Canadian book buyers: increasingly "websocial"
BookNet Canada ran a study in the first half of 2012, to determine the evolution of book-buying behaviour (works in print) in Canada. In light of the growing importance today of ebook sales worldwide, BookNet will continue to track book buyers’ consumption patterns until December 2013.
Characteristics of the typical book buyer
The average buyer’s profile is that of a Canadian-born woman between 30 and 44 years of age who works full-time in a professional or executive capacity, and whose annual household income is between $50,000 and $74,999. She lives in a city or nearby, in a suburb, and buys her books when shopping in big box retail stores such as Costco or Walmart. This fictitious person reads primarily for her own enjoyment and likes to give books as gifts.
Useful data for adaptation of marketing strategies
The study data show that the buying process for a book is largely similar to that of any other consumer product – i.e., highly spontaneous – and that traditional marketing activities such as display techniques (17.9% had heard of the book they bought while browsing through store displays) or friends’ recommendations (12.4%) had a genuine impact on sales.
Keeping these data in mind is that much more important, since we know that buyers’ behaviour appears to be increasingly social and they acknowledge talking with others frequently about what they read (51.6%, compared to 45% in 2010) and seeing people talk about books on Facebook and Twitter all the time (21%, compared to 11% in 2010).
An uptick in on-line purchases, social media conversations about books, recommendations from friends… The Web is creating a new discussion space for books, where everyone can express themselves freely. Be sure you don’t miss out!