Death of Books
Death of Books
In the car on the way back from the Warrior Dash in Colorado, my friends and I played a game called “Would you rather?” The question popped up: “Would you rather give up TV for life or give up reading books?” Most people in my social circle know that I don’t watch much TV. So, my answer was a no brainer. Everyone else answered that they would give up books. I wasn’t too surprised by the answer, as I’m under the assumption that most people watch a lot of TV. However, I was surprised at the reasoning behind the answer. Most argued that they could read the information on blogs or news articles and that books could be listened too via audobooks.
We are in a new era. Books will die. I think the death of books may take along time, maybe even a century. But it will happen. I believe that today marks the beginning of this death. Seth Godin announced that he will no longer public books in the traditional way. This is huge! Seth Godin is a marketer with over 12 best sellers. His book Linchpin, is one of my favorite books. (Review to come)
Traditional book publishers use techniques perfected a hundred years ago to help authors reach unknown readers, using a stable technology (books) and an antique and expensive distribution system.
The thing is—now I know who my readers are. Adding layers or faux scarcity doesn’t help me or you. As the medium changes, publishers are on the defensive…. I honestly can’t think of a single traditional book publisher who has led the development of a successful marketplace/marketing innovation in the last decade. The question asked by the corporate suits always seems to be, “how is this change in the marketplace going to hurt our core business?” To be succinct: I’m not sure that I serve my audience (you) by worrying about how a new approach is going to help or hurt Barnes & Noble.
Gary Vaynurchuk was right. The internet is kicking every bit of traditional media in the pants. So what does this mean for MindSpread? I’m not sure yet. But this is the only the beginning, how many other authors will follow suit?
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