Decoding the Subscription Economy
The industry is abuzz with talk of ebook subscriptions. Media reports regale the emerging subscription platforms as the "Netflix of books" and a boon for consumers, while industry pundits view the subscription model more cautiously, wary of the potential cannibalization of publishers' retail sales.
Though a well-trod conversation has emerged, actual insight on the worth of subscription models has eluded publishers. In hopes of beginning to fill this knowledge gap, the Book Industry Study Group (BISG) conducted its latest study, Digital Books And The New Subscription Economy. The study presents findings on how publishers regard new subscription models, the utility of subscription across various publishing segments, and the advantages and disadvantages of subscription.Published in July, the study combines extensive background research, over 50 publisher interviews, and an online survey that reached publishers from trade, scholarly, professional, and higher education segments. Below Nadine Vasallo, project manager of research and information at BISG outlines the study's most pertinent findings and explores the trends found within different publishing segments.