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Success Drivers of Fiction Books: An Empirical Analysis of Hardcover and Paperback Editions in Germany


  • Christina Schmidt-Stolting
  • Eva Blomeke
  • Michel Clement


Despite consumer's widespread interest in reading, enjoying, and buying books, very little research has considered the critical success factors of books. This article focuses on similarities and differences between success factors when selling fiction books sequentially in hardcover and paperback form. Using a large dataset gathered in cooperation with a leading German market research institute, this work estimates a seemingly unrelated regression model and finds that key marketing considerations—such as popular authors (stars), special genres, publisher strengths, and book cover designs—have different (and sometimes conflicting) influences on sales of the same book title depending on the edition format.

Suggested Citation

  • Christina Schmidt-Stolting & Eva Blomeke & Michel Clement, 2011. "Success Drivers of Fiction Books: An Empirical Analysis of Hardcover and Paperback Editions in Germany," Journal of Media Economics, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 24(1), pages 24-47.
  • Handle: RePEc:taf:jmedec:v:24:y:2011:i:1:p:24-47 DOI: 10.1080/08997764.2011.549428

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    References listed on IDEAS

    1. David A. Reinstein & Christopher M. Snyder, 2005. "THE INFLUENCE OF EXPERT REVIEWS ON CONSUMER DEMAND FOR EXPERIENCE GOODS: A CASE STUDY OF MOVIE CRITICS -super-," Journal of Industrial Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 53(1), pages 27-51, March.
    2. Ravid, S Abraham, 1999. "Information, Blockbusters, and Stars: A Study of the Film Industry," The Journal of Business, University of Chicago Press, vol. 72(4), pages 463-492, October.
    3. S.S. Vickner, 2004. "Media Coverage of Biotech Foods and Influence on Consumer Choice," American Journal of Agricultural Economics, Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, vol. 86(5), pages 1238-1246.
    4. Leif Brandes & Egon Franck & Stephan Nüesch, 2008. "Local Heroes and Superstars," Journal of Sports Economics, , vol. 9(3), pages 266-286, June.
    5. Victor Ginsburgh, 2001. "Economics of arts and culture," ULB Institutional Repository 2013/1869, ULB -- Universite Libre de Bruxelles.
    6. Victor Ginsburgh & David Throsby, 2006. "Handbook of the Eonomics of Art and Culture," ULB Institutional Repository 2013/152412, ULB -- Universite Libre de Bruxelles.
    7. Mohanbir S. Sawhney & Jehoshua Eliashberg, 1996. "A Parsimonious Model for Forecasting Gross Box-Office Revenues of Motion Pictures," Marketing Science, INFORMS, pages 113-131.
    8. Charles J. Mullin & Lucia F. Dunn, 2002. "Using Baseball Card Prices to Measure Star Quality and Monopsony," Economic Inquiry, Western Economic Association International, vol. 40(4), pages 620-632, October.
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    Cited by:

    1. Luca Aguzzoni & Elena Argentesi & Lorenzo Ciari & Tomaso Duso & Massimo Tognoni, 2016. "Ex post Merger Evaluation in the U.K. Retail Market for Books," Journal of Industrial Economics, Wiley Blackwell, vol. 64(1), pages 170-200, March.
    2. Sumiko Asai, 2016. "Determinants of demand and price for best-selling novels in paperback in Japan," Journal of Cultural Economics, Springer;The Association for Cultural Economics International, vol. 40(4), pages 375-392, November.
    3. 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;The Association for Cultural Economics International, vol. 38(2), pages 109-130, May.
    4. Nataliya Kochkina & Evgeniya Popova, 2017. "Are Books Luxury Goods in Russia or not?," ACEI Working Paper Series AWP-06-2017, Association for Cultural Economics International, revised Jul 2017.

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