I just read “What Do Children’s Book Consumers Want?” an article in a recent issue of Publisher’s Weekly. Being a reading teacher nerd, I find this kind of information interesting. I thought I would pass it along.
Here are some of the results of a recent consumer study:
1. Women buy nearly 70% of kids’ books and most purchasers fit solidly in the middle class both in terms of income and education.
2. BOOKS ranked #1 over all other media for the youngest ages (0-6), beating out DVDs and television. GO BOOKS!
3. Moms, teachers, and dads, in that order, affect book selection for 7-12 year-olds.
4. Teens overwhelmingly turned to parents, teachers, and close friends for book suggestions.
5. School libraries and public libraries topped the list for where children get the books they read for fun.
6. Teens (61%) said they are most influenced to pick up/buy a book when it is the sequel or the next book in a series. (NOTE TO SELF: Write a story that is part of a series.)
Here’s what I think is most interesting about the results:
Children are still reading, despite all of the influences out there competing for their attention. In fact, some other articles I have read lately stated that the children/young adult genre remains strong, even though the book industry in general is struggling as it deals with changes in adult readership, e-books, etc.
That parents and schools are influential when it comes to what children and teens read isn’t breaking news, but it is an important reminder. Children turn to parents and teachers for thousands of reasons, including what to read, how often to read, and whether to read at all. So, recommend or buy a book for a young person if you haven’t done so recently. Today, my daughter and I bought a book for her little friend’s birthday tomorrow, so I’ve done my good book deed for the week. Your turn!