Friday, October 05, 2007

Audio Book as Book Promotion Tool?

Would you buy a book after you've listened to the audio version of it? Stephen Colbert seems to think you will. He's selling an audiobook version of I Am America (And So Can You!) as a book promotion vehicle. In other words, he's hoping that people who pay $17.49 to download his audiobook from will be so enchanted with the book that they'll spring for an actual copy of it ($16.19 for a new copy at


In the spirit of full disclosure, I have to confess that I'm not a huge fan of audiobooks. But, if I wanted to use an audiobook as a book promotion vehicle, I'd probably want to give the audiobook away at a discounted price. Yes, I know that audiobooks usually cost more than their hard copy counterparts. But if your goal is to sell the hard copies and the audio copies of your book, then something has to give. Are you really expecting your potential readers to be so enamored with your book that they'll pay for it -- twice?

Well, maybe Stephen Colbert can expect that of his fans. But for the rest of us? I think I'd stick to other book promotion vehicles, such as media appearances and blogging, and keep readers purchasing hard copies of the book.