India is one of the biggest emerging markets at the moment. I owe it to our authors to make the most of this new opportunity – at least, that’s what I tell them while I’m sitting in Mumbai enjoying the sun! Joking aside, I had a productive time out in India recently and I’m delighted that several companies are keen to work with us.
Face-to-face meetings are particularly important – you can get down to business in a way that’s just not possible when you’re bogged down with emails, and it’s so much easier to build a rapport with people. There’s nothing quite like seeing someone’s workplace to help give you a feel for the ethos of the company and how they work. And just by chatting to people – including taxi drivers and waiters – you can gain insights into people’s reading habits and how they and their friends like to relax. For instance, reading on smartphones is relatively popular in India compared with the UK, as people like to use one device for everything rather than buying a separate e-reader. And when people have less leisure time, they may prefer to read in shorter chunks or buy summaries, especially when it comes to business-related books.
Online libraries are another popular and cost-effective option, so we’re pleased to say that we’re negotiating an agreement with a large digital library service.
We’re also finalising an exciting two-way agreement between Help For Writers and a very lively and creative Indian ebook store, which should provide our authors with unprecedented opportunities to promote their work to an Indian audience. In return we hope to give independent Indian authors a platform in Europe and the U.S. and get their voices heard by a wider, global audience. Based in Leicester, a city with a large British-Indian population, India is a country and culture which is very close to our hearts and we are proud to help strengthen those links.
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