By Hannah Johnson
Amazon recently announced a new feature as part of its relatively young Amazon Marketing Services: Amazon Pages. These are branded landing pages that allow companies to showcase their brand and products on Amazon.com, post news and updates, integrate their Amazon page with social networks, and measure ROI through a built-in analytics tool.
It’s free to register your brand through Amazon Pages, which offer a number of customizable templates and widgets. The analytics tool is also free and “gathers a wide variety of metrics using proven Amazon ecommerce software.”
So should publishers consider setting up their own landing page on Amazon? Of course it’s a question of time and resources (another profile to update and maintain, in addition to Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and whatever other social networks you’re using), but it’s also a question of how (or if) publishers want to brand themselves.
Amazon Pages isn’t the answer to this question of publisher branding, nor will it drastically boost book sales, but it could be a powerful tool for publishers looking to build more brand equity with their readers.
With about a 25% market share of book sales in the United States, Amazon is one of the leading sites to reach readers online. A reader might not think to go to a publisher’s website to find a new book, but he or she very well might land on a publisher’s branded Amazon Page, where the publisher can tailor their marketing message and communicate more effectively about their brand and offerings.
It seems that many people in the industry still debate whether or not to brand the publishing company or the author. After all, how many readers actually know who publishes their favorite authors? The argument against focusing on publisher branding says that readers feel a stronger connection to authors, that your time is better spent on building the author as a brand.
However, it’s not uncommon for authors to switch publishing houses, taking their brand equity with them. An author brand that took one publisher months or even years to build could walk out the door at any time. Does it really make sense to start from scratch with each new author or book a publisher takes on?
By communicating with authors about what the publisher’s brand stands for, what kinds of books and authors they publish, readers can more easily connect with a publisher. Consumers might even turn to a publisher first when looking for a new book to read. After all, most publishers have a reputation within the industry for publishing certain kinds of books. Why not share that with the readers as well? In an increasingly competitive marketplace, consumer decisions like that could have a positive impact on a publisher’s bottom line.
Publishers are increasingly savvy when it comes to direct-to-consumer marketing, and online platforms like Facebook, Twitter and now Amazon Pages offer constant contact with readers and marketplace trends. A stronger connection with readers means that publishers can take more control over how readers connect with their books, authors and brand; it means publishers don’t have to rely as heavily on third parties like book reviews or retailers to publicize and sell their books.
READ MORE: About Amazon Pages via TechCrunch