The Amazon Kindle has been with us for three years now. In that time they have become much more affordable and sophisticated and I was delighted to find one in my Christmas Stocking. Now the purpose of this blog is not to get into a debate about the attributes of kindle versus the Apple ipad versus android tablets or whatever. The debate is about the growth of online advertising and the relentless way it seems to penetrate every aspect of our lives. It also highlights the fundamental difference between advertisers/marketers and PR/Corporate communications. The former still seek to bombard us with messages the later to engage stakeholders and build relationships.
Currently if I buy a book on Amazon (or anywhere else) the next time I log into Amazon or sift through my email there will be targeted advertising or promotions based on search history and data collected about me. E-books are cheaper than traditional books. There are clearly not the overheads of printing and distribution so, it could be argued there is less money to be made in e-books unless you are the book seller. Michael Sinanian in his MediaBeat blog predicts that with the link between e-book stores and social media it would be a natural next step to introduce adverts. The adverts could even change based on who’s reading the book. Both Google and Amazon make a lot of money through online adverts so maybe it’s just a question of time?
For me the pleasure of reading is not in whether something is in a traditional hard copy or e-format it’s about the undistracted experience of immersing myself in an absorbing subject. So before online advertisers take over the world I’m off to enjoy a good read.