Ebooks have become ominpresent online as part of educating, entertaining and marketing. Playlist Research's State of the Music World series has kicked off to inform independent musicians about the various ways artists are making money these days. The ebook will be frequently updated to include fresh music facts. It features a recent Illoogle cartoon of the Eric Jarrison Band.
The book is a summary of perspectives and statistics that define the modern music industry. The project involved not only researching music stats, but ebook stats as well, to find out how viable ebooks are. It turns out in 2017 the total number of ebooks sold was 266 million, in which 148,311 were self-published. Like music and almost everything else, ebook sales are dominated by a short list of big companies. Those publishing giants are Penguin Random House, HarperCollins, Hachette, Simon & Schuster and Amazon Publishing.
About a quarter of consumers read ebooks and their preferred way of purchasing is from online retailers. Amazon, of course, has been a huge supporter and driver of the ebook revolution since it introduced Kindle in 2007. Ebook formats that work on Kindle include Mobi and AZW. Epub is actually the most popular and widely used format, as it is used for devices such as iPhones, iPads, Sony Readers and the Nook. PDF is the most universal format, although it can be hard to read on smartphones.
The most popular ebook genres, according to Author Earnings are: 1. Literature & Fiction
2. Mystery, Thriller & Suspense
4. Science Fiction & Fantasy
5. Business & Money
Down the list in the top 10 were Biographies and History. Does a fact book about music have high demand? Not really, but it can be very helpful for people learning the industry. You would think that musicians would use ebooks as an extension of their marketing, since ebooks can contain links. The links could be to the artist's website, songs, videos, product pages and social media. It's interesting, though, that when it comes to print, the leading genre is Textbooks, followed by Children's Books, then Business & Money.
Digital products are alive and well, including ebooks. Although sales declined in 2017 from the previous year, it's clear that ebooks are here to stay. It's simply easy to transport them on a portable device that can hold not only thousands of books, but thousands of songs.