Friday, July 17, 2009

Marketing eBooks: Or, Will Booksignings Go Bye-Bye?

There's been a rumbling about ebooks on a couple of my favorite blogs this week:  check out Nathan Bransford's post about releasing a text in electronic format only *after* it's been in hard back for a few weeks.  Also, check out a great (new!) blog called Pimp My Novel, which discusses the $9.99 price point for ebooks.

All interesting.  But all this echatter started my wheels turning in *this* direction:  if ebooks truly are our future, how does an author best promote his/her titles?  As (correctly) pointed out to me by "AM" in Mr. Bransford's comment section, an author can cost-effectively reach thousands of potential readers through blog tours and websites.  And there are many wonderful ones out there, but the King is, of course, the distributor:  Amazon.  And if all authors are competing for space on the Almighty Amazon, who do you think will win?  Prolly not debut authors, when Stephen King has a new kid on the block.  Prolly not a midlister, when Stephanie Meyer waxes poetic.  

I don't mean to sound bitter, I'm truly wondering how it might work.  Limited distribution channels mean limited opportunities for author promotion.  

And, too, taking this to an extreme:  will booksignings fall by the wayside?  I insist on stubbornly clinging to the idea that readers *like* meeting an author in person.  And getting something signed.  

Because as much as I love my Kindle, I love my signed books even more.  

Please, weigh in!  :-)  


Shelli said...

FRom a marketing perspective - if you meet someone in person - it takes 7 times to touch an online person in the same way. I thinkn consumers love to meet authors - online marketing shoudl be in addition to

Kristin Tubb said...

Hi, Shelli! Oh, I totally agree - I *love* meeting authors. I suppose my thinking is along these lines: if in the future there are only 2-3 places to purchase an ebook, how does a consumer find a book he or she likes that isn't by a MEGAAUTHOR? The point-of-sale marketing opportunities are slim. Bookstores allow so much more opportunity to a debut author. I say all of this knowing how much I love my Kindle. Just musings, of course - I may be old-fashioned on this one, but I can't see books being totally replaced by electronic files, a la music downloads. :-) Thanks for chiming in!