If you lived in a social media vacuum, you might be tempted to think it is time to do away with print books. eBooks and their rising sales are all the rage. By some reports, Barnes & Noble was selling three times as many eBooks as print books on BN.com. And though Amazon is notorious for not sharing numbers, they have touted throughout the year that they sell more Kindle books than paperbacks and hardbacks combined, with this being compounded in the last few weeks with the release of the Kindle Fire. You would also have heard about several authors that have made large amounts of dough by selling their books only in eBook form.
FUTUReBOOK, the digital blog from Europe in association with Bookseller recently did an article about the 2011 digital publishing timeline. This article featured some very interesting numbers for publishers:
In January, eBook sales in the US comprised 23.5% of all trade book sales. Random house hit 2 million eBook sales in May. In July, Penguin announced that digital sales made up 14% of their overall business. And in August, Simon and Schuster announced that digital sales have doubled for them.
These numbers are wonderful and exciting, but did you notice something? They are not 100%. eBooks are capturing more of the market (and in some cases, growing it), but they have not completely overtaken it. Nor is everyone convinced that they ever will. The point is that whatever happens in the future, print books are still alive and well and necessary!
As a publisher, if you neglect the print market, you are missing out on sales. An excellent way to keep your whole line of printing projects adaptable and manageable is by using print on demand, or POD. Bookmasters has recently added the Océ Jetstream 1000, a digital printer that offers quick, affordable, and quality printing.
With POD, you can print what you need, when you need it. This ensures that you have print books when you need them, but you don’t have large quantities of excess stock in storage while the print/ebook divide is still in flux. This is especially important for publishers with multiple books. Using offset print for books that warrant many copies, combined with smaller digital print runs for books that will have a smaller audience, and POD for books with a very small targeted audience or to keep your backlist alive is a model for success.
Because you may have some books in your list that you know are going to be selling in print in large quantities, meriting an offset print run, you may be wondering how you are going to juggle all these printing contacts. You are in luck. When you work with Bookmasters, you have the flexibility to do offset print runs when you need them, and POD and ebooks. It is a wonderful solution in this time of rapid change in the industry. And it is the kind of partnership that can sustain you as things continue to shift.
With Bookmasters, you can work with one company for all your publishing projects, choosing which services best fit your needs. For more information, call 1-800-537-6727, and see what Bookmasters can do for you.