US children’s book sales up on back of ‘Harry Potter’ and ‘Pokemon Go’
US children’s book sales have risen across both fiction and nonfiction, boosted by the release of ‘Harry Potter’ and Pokemon Go titles, reports the Bookseller.
The findings, which were presented at the 2016 Nielsen Children’s Summit in New York, recorded a 5% growth to US$122m (A$159.4m) for children’s fiction in the year to date, largely due to renewed interest in the ‘Harry Potter’ series, and a rise of 6% to US$38m (A$49.6m) in nonfiction, boosted by the popularity of Pokemon Go books.
Children’s nonfiction was highlighted as a major growth story, and successful trends in the category also included books that tap into child-centred interest, activities and empowerment. Children’s nonfiction also grew in the US independent bookstore channel, with indies now accounting for 11% of sales.
Other observations on the children’s market include continued ebook erosion in the children’s sector; higher board book sales; a return to classics such as Dr Seuss; a slight drop-off in YA; the popularity of ‘cross-platform media tie-ins’ and fantasy; and the ‘explosion’ of graphic novels and comics across both children’s fiction and nonfiction.
Discoverability was highlighted as a main issue by David Kleeman, senior vice president of global trends at Dubit, with consumers ‘paralysed’ by too much choice in a market where the biggest brands are ‘taking up more and more of the oxygen’. Kleeman advises the use of ‘old models with new platforms to overwhelm audiences’. Kleeman also foregrounded the dominance of video, and YouTube in particular, as a top influencer for young people, advising publishers that ‘it is to kids what Google is to parents’.