The publishing industry is changing. The increase of digital book sales coupled with the decreasing marketing dollars many publishers have to spend on promoting books is changing how books get promoted. With these changes, the industry is seeing a decline in in-person author book tours.
BookTour, Inc. was founded in 2006 to provide a directory of author events. The service provides information on authors including biography, books, and upcoming engagements. The company offers online publicity tools that aggregate events, interviews, and signings and make it available to readers. BookTour also provides tools for book promotion that allow authors to locate receptive live audiences.
Earlier this month, BookTour announced that they will be shutting down on Thursday, September 1, 2011. They gave the following reason for their closing:
“Fewer author tours and changes in book marketing budgets have made our company financially unviable. And while we would like to continue providing the valuable service that is BookTour, everyone here has families to feed and bills to pay. As such, the founders are working on new and exciting ventures in publishing and software development.”
So, as of Thursday, all BookTour services will end and the data on their website will be unavailable. Yet another sign along the road showing that the book industry is undergoing a shift, making some services obsolete and creating room for new services that fit the new paradigm.