Book Publishing News – 09/15/17

Book Publishing News - 09/15/17Barnes & Noble Same-Store Sales Slide 4.4%

Overall sales fell 6.6% while same-store sales dropped 4.4%.“Barnes & Noble continues to struggle with the sea change in the book industry as Amazon.com now controls the majority of the market and has even begun challenging B&N in the brick-and-mortar world with its own stores,” The Motley Fool said. Read more …

Former WaterBrook & Multnomah Publisher Alex Field Launches New Literary Agency

Alexander Field, former VP & Publisher at WaterBrook & Multnomah, launched a new literary agency and consulting agency. The Bindery is an ambitious, full-service literary agency working closely with authors to set big goals, shape their book ideas, create robust book proposals, and build a marketing and platform strategy, long before anything hits an editor’s desk. Read more …

 

Baker Publishing and Book House Create e-commerce Site

Baker Publishing Group and independent Christian bookstore Baker Book House launched a new online website www.bakerbookhouse.com that offers the discounts and online shopping. The website features products from all BPG divisions—Baker Academic, Baker Books, Bibles, Brazos Press, Bethany House, Chosen, and Revell.

Authors Question the Novel’s Future in the Face of Declining Attention Spans

During BBC Radio 4’s “Today” program Robert Harris argued that novels have “moved away from the central position in our culture.” Claire Messud suggested that “maybe in 50 years there won’t be novels” due to perceived declining attention spans in readers. Presenter John Humphrys quizzedHarris on whether the novel could compete with other mediums.Humphrys said “You’re slightly anxious – is that the right word – for the future of the novel set against opposing attractions? Read more …

 

Print, Audiobook Sales Up – eBook Sales Slide

publishers reported higher sales of print books and downloadable audio, while e-book sales continued to slump. With a good, if not great, first half of 2017 behind them, publishers are cautiously optimistic about the remainder of the year. In his letter to PRH employees about the first half results, Penguin Random House CEO Markus Dohle cautioned that, “we face a marketplace heavy with unrelenting new-title competition each week and a crowded media landscape with constantly breaking news and attention-grabbing headlines.” Read more ...

Book Publishing News 08/18/17

Carol Award Finalists

Historical: Starving Hearts by Janine Mendenhall, Lighthouse Publishing of the Carolinas, editors Ann Tatlock and Amberlyn Dwinnell

Debut: You’re the Cream in my Coffee by Jennifer Lamont Leo, Lighthouse Publishing of the Carolinas, editor Kathryn Davis

Speculative: The Healer’s Rune (Young Adult Fantasy) by Lauricia Matuska, Brimstone Fiction, editors Rowena Kuo and Eddie Jones (Brimstone is now its own house under Ro’s management)

Read more …

 

Silver Scroll Merit Awards

Silver Scroll Merit Awards for Fiction went to Marilyn Turk for The Gilded Curse from Heritage Beacon Fiction. Congrats also to Edie Melson for her novel, Alone, and nonficiton book, While My Child is Away.

 

Good news! B&N met their profit goals. Bad news! Sales fall 6.5 percent. 

The 6 percent drop in book sales is partly due to lower sales of coloring books and juvenile titles. B&N expects the sales decline to continue in 2018.


Marketing Tips

What would happen if you spent $100k on Facebook ads?

One tip?  Create video specifically for Facebook Ads.

Book Publishing News 07/15/17

Exclusive News Excerpt from The Hot Sheet

(enjoy this article from The Hot Sheet)

A Potentially Beneficial New Road Opens in Email Newsletter Advertising

When talking recently with UK-based historical fiction writer Jane Steen, we learned not only that she’s had a good experience with the email newsletter advertising service BookBub (as most indie authors do), but that she’s spotted another venue with some promise.

Before we discuss that new venue, here’s a quick overview of Steen’s experience with BookBub: after she was featured in their newsletter, she says she netted “well over $10,000 … in a month of extra sell-through” for the $410 cost of her advertisement for the first book (which is free) in a series. When we asked BookBub’s Katie Donelan about this kind of response, she said Steen used several particularly savvy approaches, including marketing a series. Donelan says, “94 percent of BookBub authors who discount a book in a series sell more copies of other books in the series during the promotion. And making a first book in series free is one of the most successful strategies they use. First, we see 10 times the downloads on free books that we do on 99-cent books. On top of that, we see five-times-higher sales of other books in a series when the first book is offered—compared to any other book in the series—and we see eight-times-higher sales of other books when the featured book is free.” We’ll write up more insights from Donelan in a future issue.

After the successful BookBub run, Open Road Integrated Media offered to advertise Steen’s books in their newsletters. Open Road is the leading curated backlist house founded by that other Jane Friedman, the former CEO of HarperCollins. Open Road offers ebook editions of more than 10,000 titles from some of the greatest authors and estates in the business.

In the last couple of years, Open Road has found success by creating special-interest, content-driven websites and corresponding newsletters:EarlyBirdBooks.comThe-Line-Up.com, and ThePortalist.com. Open Road just passed the million-subscriber mark on their newsletters, and their sites have more than 1.4 million unique visitors per month.

They now plan to launch three additional websites and email newsletters:

  • Love So True (for romance readers, of course)

  • Murder & Mayhem (for mystery and thriller readers)

  • The Archive (for history and nonfiction consumers)

Open Road is including ads in their newsletters and tells The Hot Sheet that they’re particularly interested in working with self-published material. Here’s a link with information. They do check for a quality level they feel comfortable with, and they write the copy for the ads themselves, ensuring a professional tone consistent with each newsletter’s voice and style.

There are a few restrictions. For example, the free first-in-series book that Steen advertised with BookBub would not have flown with Open Road, which isn’t accepting ads for free books; a book must cost 99 cents or more to be eligible.

Mary McAveney, Open Road’s executive vice president for marketing, says the largest of the newsletters in operation, Early Bird Books (with 750,000 subscribers), typically produces what she describes as “a 1000 percent or more increase over baseline sales” in the days following an ad run. There’s also an increase in sales of an author’s other titles, with associated boosts in sales rankings and reviews on retail sites. Seventy-five percent of Early Bird readers are 45 and older; 80 percent of them are female; they are primarily US-based.

McAveney tells The Hot Sheet, “What it comes down to is that we’re solving our own marketing challenges here. We have to create our own earned media with these newsletters, and it helps our audience even more if we can put more good titles in front of them. Our point is to continue to build this community of readers, who are coming in through their genre preferences and staying with us.”

Bottom line: The price to place an ad in the Early Bird Books newsletter is $180. That sounds like a great rate to us, especially because an ad in an Open Road Integrated Media newsletter puts a title in the company of some of the biggest and best work in the canon. It’s no surprise to us, in fact, that publishers (including Workman and Houghton Mifflin Harcourt) are using these newsletters as avenues to reach readers. Contact Open Road at [email protected] to get more information.