Tuesday, December 04, 2007

Will Kindle help Amazon Command the Self Publishing Marketplace?

Yesterday a friend asked me about the proprietary nature of the Kindle. "Why would Amazon want to only have content in its own format?" I didn't have a good answer. My first inclination was that the use of only proprietary formats of ebooks might be simply a functionality prioritization, and that in a later release, Kindle will be able to handle other forms of e-content.

This afternoon I was cleaning up my desk and ran across the business card of someone from BookSurge - and that got my gears grinding.

BookSurge is an Amazon company that helps people self-publish their books. They offer editorial, marketing, and print-on-demand services for people who (for whatever reason) won't get published by an established publishing house. This is a burgeoning market and one where BookSurge has many competitors.

In fact, according the the Under the Radar Study by BISG back in 2005, aggregated sales of books from publishers who (individually) have less that $1 Million in annual revenue, is estimated to be nearly $3 Billion per year. That's a pretty big market to service, especially if you have way of taking a significant chunk of that $3 Billion for yourself.

From BookSurge's website, they even say the following:

Not only can BookSurge help you create a high-quality, highly marketable book, we can also provide you with exclusive tools and resources to help you gain exposure, develop an audience, and build readership for your work.

Exclusive tools? Like maybe we can distribute your titles through Kindle, and we won't take any from other self-publishers? That's a pretty big exclusivity factor for an author thinking of self-publishing.

food for thought.

1 comment:

Jessica said...

I have found the customer support for the Kindle lacking a bit. The other day I did find a new website called Kindlehelpdesk.com which actually has a lot of the information about the kindle consolidated. I hope more sites offer help like this one.