Is 2009 the Year of the E-Book? (Part Two)

More on the Mike Elgan Future of eBooks article (part one is here if you’re curious):


4. The rise in aggressive e-book marketing: an early bird gets the worm kind of argument that goes a little like this: there are people who are coming on strong in this world and if you’re not with them, you’re going to be left behind.

*WHO CARES: Anyone who spends time online (so…everyone)


  • Get involved on Twitterit’s the single best thing you can do to hear the conversations and figure out where to get started.
  • Experiment. It’s better to be first than to be perfect and, as a wise man at BNC says, you’re only learning when you’re making mistakes.
  • Pay attention to the new marketing channels that are coming at you when you’re online and consider how to use them for your purposes.


5. A rise in books written for electronic reading:

*WHO CARES: Millenials


  • e-books don’t need to take two years to write, edit and distribute so figure out how to shorten your cycle. Barack Obama’s inaugural address was ‘published’ the day after it was made (it was either free or $10 depending on where you got it from).
  • Customize! Use the fluidity of e-book production to create custom editions (and you can even print them out in store if you’re using PODhello Espresso Machine!)
  • Take a book beyond its pagesfor ideas, check out Harlequin’s enhanced editions
  • Chunk your contentkeep sections up to date and accessible by selling them separately or as whole (Lonely Planet and O’Reilly Media are great examples of this)


6. The decline of the newspaper industry: hmm. I guess this makes sense although I feel like this is more about the rise of the e-reader than the rise of the e-book. So that’s what I’ll focus on.


  • Support EPUBmost devices support it and those that don’t need encouragement to do so.

Is 2009 the year of the e-book? It remains to be seen whether these six factors (and the other minor ones not mentioned here) will drive adoption at such a speedy rate. That said, now’s as good a time as any to start gearing up and working with new channels.