Millennials Value Books both in Print and in Digital Format

Deloitte, a global consultancy, has published their annual Technology, Media & Telecommunications Predictions report for 2015. More than billion new smartphones will find an owner this year, having a profound impact, among many other things, on ebook and ereader markets. The report estimates that ebooks already have about 20% share of the global book sales.

If we set the launch of the Amazon Kindle ebook system as the starting point for the global ebook market development, ebooks have gained their relatively large market share only in seven years. Hundreds of years old print book culture gave way to ebooks amazingly fast. There are, however, big differences between large English-language book markets and small markets, like many small countries in Europe concerning ebook adoption. For instance, in the US, ebooks have up to 30% market share, but in many Scandinavian countries ebook market share is around 1%.

The dynamics of the markets are also very different. In the US, where the growth was very rapid during the last few years, the annual ebook sales growth rate is under 10%, but in markets that are in their early stages, the annual growth rate can be 100%.

deloitte: millennials media spend, TMT Predictions 2015
Source: Deloitte Technology, Media & Technology Predictions 2015.

Back to the Deloitte’s Technology, Media & Technology Predictions 2015 report. There are some interesting estimates about the near future in the report. Deloitte predicts that 18-34-year-old (millennials) U.S. residents and Canadians will spend more on media products than is the total value of Internet advertising in the US and Canada.

Many people thought that these young adults who have grown up with the Internet and free content wouldn’t pay for media products anymore. Not so. The millennials are happy to pay for both digital and analog content if they consider it to be worth their money. Will they spend all their money on movies alone? No, books have a lot of value even for generations who have grown up with the Internet and mobile phones.

In the figure above, Deloitte predicts the amount of money 18-34-year-old North-Americans are going to spend on media products in 2015. Pay-TV takes the largest share, while (print) newspapers are practically doomed.

Two somewhat surprising items in the millennial media spend prediction are streaming video (SVOD) and music. The relatively high spend on music comprises live music, digital downloads and streaming services, like Spotify. Live music gets the largest share of the total, actually explaining millennials’ large budget on music.
Streaming video on demand services (SVOD), like Netflix gets more publicity than money from young adults. The report doesn’t say this, but in the future, it is easy to envision pay-TV lose money in favor of streaming video services.

Millennials are expected to spend a solid $60 on books annually. The number includes both print and digital. The average purchase price for a book is around $12.

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