Library Planning Research

What is the value of an ebook?

In “In the Era of eBooks, What Is a Book Worth? (I),” a very important discussion has begun. Indeed, what is the value of an e-book?

At ACA, we are developing new library service concepts to support e-book technology. Our research shows that print titles are no longer required to take up the majority of library space. Furthermore, book technology continues to expand with digital portals and new learning styles. But, what is the e-books value? Does its value go down if there is no extra cost to duplicate the content? Do libraries matter in this debate?

In the next couple of years, publishers are going to have the difficult task at defining their marketplace. They will design and develop new product offering to create a viable cost system. In the end, this system is going to show that “library as place” matters as a promotion tool. Librarians should develop ways to market and support e-book growth.

According to conversations our team had at ALA midwinter with Overdrive, libraries are going to be a marketing opportunity for book publishers. Publishers are going to continue to provide new titles to libraries just to generate a community buzz. The library space will need to support the book world, because there will be less retail space for browsing and testing e-book products.

Librarians know patrons will experience e-books via Mobiles, Pads and Laptops in their library. From our perspective, its’ the space that matters…Indeed, the Library’s spaces are going to be the driving factor in e-book marketing efforts. This is an exciting time to be a librarian. It is an exciting time work in a library and generate new and different ways to interact with the new types of book technology.