Experimenting with Digital Delivery

The publishing landscape is changing quickly. We have seen the digital future coming for some time, but it is finally upon us. As a result, we are doing a lot of experimenting at Thomas Nelson, trying to figure out what works and what doesn’t.

books flying through the air

Six weeks ago, we introduced NelsonFree. The basic idea is that if you buy the printed format of the book, we throw in the electronic and audio versions for free. We believe this program adds value without a lot of cost and would actually induce sales of the printed format of the book. It’s too early to tell if this will be the case, but the early indicators have been encouraging. We will be adding several more titles to this program in the months ahead.This week, we thought we would try delivering one of our daily devotional books via email—something we are calling an “e-devotional.” For 30 days we will send subscribers a daily, bite-sized portion of the book, so they can sample the content. We also want to test whether or not this is a viable way to access devotional content. In return, at the end of the 30-day period, we will ask them to fill out a brief, anonymous survey.

We are beginning with Jesus Calling by Sarah Young. Honestly, I am not a big devotional book reader. But this book is now on my “must-reading” list. I rarely start a day without reading it. In fact, sometimes I cheat and read ahead the night before. I even keep a second copy in my office, so that I can re-read it if necessary. It’s truly an amazing book and currently one of our top sellers. After you read it, you will know why.

If you want to sign up for the experiment, you can do so here. Again, there is no obligation other than the survey. By participating, you will be helping us shape how we deliver books in the future.

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