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The sales effect of word of mouth: a model for creative goods and estimates for novels

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  • Jonathan Beck

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Abstract

Weekly sales of creative goods—like music records, movies, or books—usually peak shortly after release and then decline quickly. In many cases, however, they follow a hump-shaped pattern where sales increase for some time. A popular explanation for this phenomenon is word of mouth among a population of heterogeneous buyers, but previous studies typically assume buyer homogeneity or neglect word of mouth altogether. In this paper, I study a model of new-product diffusion with heterogeneous buyers that allows for a quantification of the sales effect of word of mouth. The model includes Christmas sales as a special case. All parameters have an intuitive interpretation. Simulation results suggest that the parameters are estimable for data that are not too volatile and that cover a sufficiently large part of a title’s life cycle. I estimate the model for four exemplary novels using scanner data on weekly sales. Copyright Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2007

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Bibliographic Info

Article provided by Springer in its journal Journal of Cultural Economics.

Volume (Year): 31 (2007)
Issue (Month): 1 (March)
Pages: 5-23

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Handle: RePEc:kap:jculte:v:31:y:2007:i:1:p:5-23

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Web page: http://www.springerlink.com/link.asp?id=100284

Related research

Keywords: New-product diffusion; Word of mouth; Creative industries; C22; L82; M3;

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References

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Citations

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Cited by:
  1. Beck, Jonathan, 2009. "Diderot's rule," MPRA Paper 17404, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  2. Fernández Blanco, Víctor & Prieto Rodríguez,Juan, 2009. "Análisis de los hábitos de lectura como una decisión económica/," Estudios de Economía Aplicada, Estudios de Economía Aplicada, vol. 27, pages 113-138, Abril.
  3. Aguzzoni, Luca & Argentesi, Elena & Ciari, Lorenzo & Duso, Tomaso & Tognoni, Massimo, 2013. "Ex-post merger evaluation in the UK retail market for books," DICE Discussion Papers 98, Heinrich‐Heine‐Universität Düsseldorf, Düsseldorf Institute for Competition Economics (DICE).
  4. Khim Yong, Goh & Kai-Lung, Hui & I.P.L., Png, 2008. "Social Interaction, Observational Learning, and Privacy: the "Do Not Call" Registry," MPRA Paper 8225, University Library of Munich, Germany.
  5. Edoardo Gaffeo & Antonello E. Scorci & Laura Vici, 2008. "Demand Distribution Dynamics in Creative Industries: the Market for Books in Italy," Department of Economics Working Papers 0804, Department of Economics, University of Trento, Italia.
  6. Jason Potts & Stuart Cunningham & John Hartley & Paul Ormerod, 2008. "Social network markets: a new definition of the creative industries," Journal of Cultural Economics, Springer, vol. 32(3), pages 167-185, September.
  7. Ohio University & Department of Economics & Hailey Hayeon Joo, 2009. "Social Learning and Optimal Advertising in the Motion Picture Industry," 2009 Meeting Papers 513, Society for Economic Dynamics.
  8. Edlira Shehu & Tim Prostka & Christina Schmidt-Stölting & Michel Clement & Eva Blömeke, 2014. "The influence of book advertising on sales in the German fiction book market," Journal of Cultural Economics, Springer, vol. 38(2), pages 109-130, May.
  9. Jonathan Beck, 2007. "The sales effect of word of mouth: a model for creative goods and estimates for novels," Journal of Cultural Economics, Springer, vol. 31(1), pages 5-23, March.
  10. John Ashworth & Bruno Heyndels & Kristien Werck, 2010. "Expert judgements and the demand for novels in Flanders," Journal of Cultural Economics, Springer, vol. 34(3), pages 197-218, August.
  11. Pérona, Mathieu & Pouyet, Jérôme, 2010. "Le prix unique du livre à l'heure numérique," Opuscules du CEPREMAP, CEPREMAP, number 19, May.

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