It’s hard to believe that it’s over a week now since Ganxy launched at The Frankfurt Book Fair – feels like an eternity for the team. While the learning, networking, and schlepping from meeting to meeting were certainly exhausting, the Ganxy team is back to business as usual and totally exhilarated by what we saw and experienced.
Here are a few observations we made in Frankfurt:
People are still reading books — physical books: Just as the demise of television has been predicted for years now, so too has the demise of the physical book. Yet, TV has managed to stick around and will certainly continue to do so for at least the foreseeable future. The same applies for physical books. A quick walk through the halls made this pretty clear. Not to say that things aren’t rapidly changing, but physical books aren’t out of the game yet.
Europeans are putting the right eBook infrastructure in place: While the continental European eBook market is lagging behind the US and the UK in terms of adoption, the Europeans certainly aren’t wasting any time getting the right pieces in place to create, drive, and take advantage of the burgeoning market. Check out companies like epubli.com and Bookwire to name a couple. These companies look just as impressive – if not more so – than their US and UK-based equivalents.
If you want them to buy, make sure they can sample: One of the points that we heard repeatedly mentioned in conversations and panels is that when customers purchase online, the ability to preview or sample the book is crucial to making that final decision. One thing for those promoting books to think about is how they’re going to make sure that their customers have a good experience when it comes to getting a feel for a book. Will reading a PDF on a tiny phone screen suffice? Remember, anything that detracts from the brand of your book as part of the book-buying experience will ultimately cost your book sales and popularity.
Last but not least, embrace the change! Sure, we’re in a time of unprecedented technological change, and the future feels more unpredictable than ever, but we at Ganxy believe that the opportunities are aplenty for those who are willing to optimistically embrace the change around them. Look to publishers like O’Reilly, OR Books, and Profile Books who are taking new and bold steps. You may not necessarily believe that every new thing they’re doing is appropriate for your business, but keep your eyes and ears open and learn from them. There will certainly be missteps among the innovators out there, but through risk comes reward.
Finally, what’s the next step for Ganxy? We’re still on the go, rolling out new features that we’ve been planning for a while, and listening to our new users to figure out what comes next. We look forward to telling you all about those new features in the weeks to come, and we invite you to start a conversation with us to tell us about some of the issues that you’re facing as you attempt to promote and sell your books online.