Research Shows Unauthorized Digital Books Leads To 'Significant Jump In Sales'

from the well,-look-at-that dept

We've seen this before, with individual authors like Paulo Coelho and David Pogue, who both found that as more people were able to get unauthorized copies of their ebooks, their sales actually increased. So, this shouldn't come as a surprise, but some new research looking at the impact on sales of unauthorized files getting out found a "significant jump in sales" (found via Michael Scott):
Brian O'Leary discussed his firm's research on the effect on sales when a title finds its way into an unsanctioned online market. The findings -- a significant jump in sales -- have surprised many in the business.
To be fair, he does go on to say this doesn't mean just "don't worry about" unauthorized access. Instead, he says it's important to figure out what kind of unauthorized access helps sales and what kind hurts -- and that still needs to be studied. But, the early results certainly suggest that the stuff that helps quite often outweighs the stuff that hurts (sometimes by quite a bit).

Filed Under: books, ebooks, sales, unauthorized


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  1. identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 9 Feb 2010 @ 7:41am

    Re:

    "It is like anything. An author (or band, or movie maker) who doesn't have a big following can benefit from giving stuff away for free. In part, it is because their downside risk is very small, because they have little to lose."

    Not sure if I agree with you there. Neil Gaiman posted free e-books of various of his novels. As a result the sales for those novels went through the roof. These were books that had been out for a few years and had sold very well originally but when he brought them to the attention of a new audience they clamoured to buy them. Considering his books are normally bestsellters I'd say that he goes against your "downside risk is very small, because they have little to lose" comment.

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