Finding an Audience for Every Book

audienceMore books are being published today than ever before and the number continues to increase. At the same time, the number of readers for those books isn’t increasing at the same rate. It begs the question: Are there enough readers for all the books?

Obviously, some (ahem: most) books just aren’t going to get read. If you’re managing a publishing house or an imprint, your books not being read is just not acceptable – for you, your authors and your employees.

That’s where audience development comes in. As Jim Hanas, the new director of audience development at HarperCollins puts it: “Every piece of content…has an audience of a certain size…and audience development…is the role of building systems and maintaining content strategy that make it as easy for us to reach that audience with that piece of content.”

Every publisher probably has at least one person dedicated to this concept. Who is finding an audience for each of your books?

More in our Q&A with Hanas.

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The rest of the day’s top news:

Discoverability and Books Without Borders (DBW)
Join Digital Book World for a free webcast exploring how readers find what to read next and how authors find an audience in the digital and social world.

How Much Back-List Is Digital? (PW)
PW examined 100 best-selling books from 1992 and 1982 to find out just how many of them were available digitally. Just over half had digital editions, though many more of the fiction hits had been published as ebooks compared to the nonfiction best-sellers.

Penguin Settles Ebook Anti-Trust Probe With European Commission (Bloomberg)
Penguin has followed its four co-defendants in an anti-trust inquiry relating to ebook price-fixing and collusion in settling with the European Commission. Like the other publishers, Penguin will go off its current agency pricing contracts with retailers.

An Interview With Hybrid Author Michael J. Sullivan (DBW)
Sullivan was one of the first indie authors to sign with a big publishing house and he’s going it alone for his next book, due out in 2014. DBW expert blogger Bob Mayer sat down with him to find out why.

Are Libraries Stocking Enough Self-Published Ebooks? (DBW)
Now that ebooks are hitting best-seller lists like never before, do libraries have the access they need and are they stocking these titles?

Breaking Down the Distribution Advantage (Newbie’s Guide to Publishing)
Author and self-publishing advocate Barry Eisler breaks down what he sees as the main advantage of working with a traditional publisher: distribution. Related: How the New York Times Got It Wrong – It’s All About Distribution.

Remembering the Godfather of Ebooks (The Hindu)
World Copyright Day (April 23) is perhaps a good time to remember the man who is widely credited with inventing ebooks in 1971. This item in India’s The Hindu excerpts one of Michael Hart’s last interviews before his 2011 death.

Less is the New More (DBW)
Short form content is opening up an ocean of possibilities for some.

Canada Says OK to Random-Penguin (Pub Lunch)
Canadian regulators have given the go-ahead to the Random-Penguin mega-merger.

Amazon Says Privet (TechCrunch)
Amazon is reportedly hiring to fill Kindle positions in Russia in advance of launching its business there. Kobo plans to be in the country within the next 18 months.

German Judge Rules Used Ebooks Illegal (The Digital Reader)
A ruling in a regional German court has declared that ebooks are not software and therefore are not covered under a European ruling from last year that made the resale of software licenses legal. Related: Ebooks Software? In a Way, Yes | What Happens to Publishers and Authors if a Used Ebook Market Becomes Legal?

Lack of Metadata Holding Arabic Online Marketplaces Back (Pub Perspectives)
A lack of good metadata is preventing the Arabic ebook business from taking off, say operators.


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