Saturday, March 20, 2010

Poll Results Are In!

You may remember that on the last poll, I asked about your reactions to seeing the same book being heaped with glowing praise on blog after blog. Kinda what I call a blog blitzkrieg. Everywhere you go, there's that book.

Well, I want to thank the 117 people who took the time to respond to the poll. Here's where I get to distill your answers. (Please don't turn me into the revenuers!)

58 of you (or 49%) are trying to reduce your bulging TBR shelves and piles. You said that, if the book sounded like something you'd enjoy reading, you'd make a note of it. This response sounds hopeful, but when you're talking about bookaholics, it would be all too easy for this book to fall through the cracks.

34 of you (or 29%) said that if the book sounded good, you'd make a point of reading it soon. This is more in line with what the publishers are hoping for.

The third largest group-- 14 of you, or 11%-- said that all the hype really makes you hesitate because it's very difficult for a book to live up to all this praise.

Five of you (4%) said that all the hype turns you off so completely that you don't care if you ever get around to reading the book. I have one foot in this camp. It's the foot that tells me that I have a feeling that I wouldn't enjoy the book in the first place. Where's my other foot? Up in that first group that says if it sounds good, I'll get around to it one of these days. To be honest, the more a book is hyped, the more likely it is to fall through the cracks with me.

Four of you (3%) said that you have to read it now. It sounds to me that, unless your name is Oprah, if publishers are looking for super sales figures within the first few weeks, the blitzkrieg approach really isn't working. Of course, my poll isn't the most scientific thing going.

Last but not least, two of you (1%) were honest and said that you read the book with the express purpose of exposing its faults. Uber popular books annoy you.

From the looks of it, all the publishers and publicists can do is bring a book to our attention. After that, it's a game of chance with 61% saying "maybe", 34% saying "yes", and 5% saying "no".

Would you say that a tactic that gains you a 33% return is really working? Inquiring minds want to know!


  1. Interesting results. A lot, of course, depends on the nature of the reviews, what the reviewers liked about the book, the genre of the book, and the reviewers themselves. But batting .333 in baseball isn't too bad, maybe the same applies to book selling.

  2. I think most bloggers (like me) might want to read the book right away, but have other commitments for their immediate reading time so they have to put it off.

  3. I agree with what Kathy said above. A lot of us read the blogs and think that the book is something we want, but many of us are trying very hard to curb our buying and also curb how many books we commit to. We only have so many hours to read, wish it were more, but it's not. I was part of the group that said I would make note of it.

    I think publishers are doing the best they can to get that brand name (book name) into our minds, so that when we see it again in the bookstore, we'll say I need to buy that. My question is if they don't do this, what should they do?

  4. Kay's right. We don't have unlimited funds for books, nor does anyone I know have as much time for reading as she would love to have. Life does seem to interfere - which, much as I whine about it, is a good thing.

  5. Beth-- I was thinking about baseball statistics, too. I hope that's a good average for books as well!

    Kathy-- You have a very valid point as far as bloggers who receive a large amount of ARCs are concerned.

    Kay-- I'm thinking they may want to try more book trailers on You Tube in an attempt to get some of the people who have plenty of time to plug their eyes into TV programs to try plugging into a book instead. Seeing what the book is about on film might be a good way of doing this.

    Barbara-- I'd never want to have a "life" in which nothing interfered with my reading time. (Yawwwn!)

  6. Yes, interesting analogy to baseball stats :) I always appreciate your analysis and commentary following up on your polls, Cathy.

  7. Interesting! I'm pretty much in line with you, I hesitate to read it because it can't possibly live up to the praise. However, some books I do still read and I either like them or I'm disappointed.

    Here's the thing though. I bet the publishers are on the right track, to a point. reviewers who get the books for free are not only reviewing them on their blog where die hard readers will read about it, I bet they are also talking to friends, family, and co-workers. It's those people who don't read a bunch of book blogs who are most likely to read the book (in my opinion). I can't tell you how often I'll get a book for review, love it, and then rave about it on facebook or to those who don't follow book blogs. I would say about 40% of those people end up reading the book. Sure, they aren't all buying it, but some do buy based on my recommendation since we have similar tastes. and of course if they like it..they tell others and the cycle continues. I also get several people that will ask me every couple of months to recommend a book because they are in need of one and want to know what I've loved recently. I bet you all get that too.


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