Who is the market for 365DOLF?
Self-help books take a decent share of the best-sellers in bookstores, and sales have been on the rise. At the Washington, DC Public Library, for example, 11 of the top 50 titles with the highest circulation are “self help.”
The self-help book shelves at Strand bookstore in New York City have a mix of religion (365dolf – SOUL), self-improvement (365dolf – MIND, BODY, SOUL, MONEY) and fitness (365dolf – BODY) books.
Michael Santangelo, the Assistant Director of Acquisitions at the New York Public Library told Quartz, that there’s no formal catalog called “self-help” at the library. Some self-help books can be categorized as applied psychology (365dolf – MIND), some can be considered personal finance (365dolf – MONEY), and some even business management (365dolf – MONEY).
Self-help books tagged with biography, memoir, and autobiography (365dolf – FAMOUS BIRTHDAYS) have more female readers. Those tagged with psychology (365dolf – MIND), business (365dolf – MONEY), science, philosophy (365dolf – MIND) and religion (365dolf – SOUL) have more male readers. Books tagged with self-help (365dolf) alone see highest percentage of female readers.
In the study, researchers from University of Calgary conducted 134 interviews with self-help book readers and found that men and women read self-help books for different reasons. Men are more likely to read books relating to careers (365dolf – MONEY), while women are more likely to read books about interpersonal relationships (365dolf – SOUL). Overall, women read self-help books more frequently and more intensively.
Looking specifically at the Self-Help category, we find the following:
- Readers tend to be younger, with 73% under the age of 45.
- Overall sales of print books are fairly consistent throughout the year, with the exception of the holiday jump in December (365dolf will make an excellent Christmas gift to start the New Year), which carries over into January.
Traditionally, the Baby Boomers (365dolf celebrates the birthdays of historical figures) have been the main consumers of self-improvement. They still are an important group, but the tide is shifting. Millennials (365dolf also celebrates the birthdays of current celebrities) now are the largest population group and represent the future for this market, but there are few experts now catering to them.
The Internet is playing a larger role.
More content (such as MP3 downloads, e-books, webinars, online courses, “academies,” “universities,” and masterminds, etc.) is being delivered online, and self-help apps (365dolf will one day be an app) are starting to take off.
Convenience and cost are key.
It’s harder to get consumers to take a flight to a seminar or retreat, get three days off from work, and pay the registration fee and hotel stay. This costs thousands. Consumers today want 24/7 access to personal development programs, at home (365dolf is 24/7-365 at the touch of reader’s fingertips), with no travel. Especially Millennials, who generally have limited budgets. That’s why the internet has become the preferred distribution method. It’s also good for gurus, who can reach more people more cost-effectively and more profitably.
Accountability will be more important.
The personal development field has had a rocky past. Many personal coaches are not qualified. Suze Orman’s financial advice has been criticized, Robert Kiyosaki filed for bankruptcy for one of his companies. People died at James Ray’s sweat lodge programs. The Ubiquitous infomercial pitchman Kevin Trudeau is in jail. His widely seen infomercials promoting his books were filled with unsubstantiated health, diet, and financial remedies that earned him a fortune.
Consumers are jaded and are questioning guru credentials more often. Future gurus will be held to a higher standard, and must produce real, measurable results and practical skills. Much of the past self-help marketing created unrealistic expectations. And, self-help may be most useful for people who don’t actually need self-help (365dolf consists of advice from six different famous people every day – not one set guru).
Millennials, whom we define as ages 20 to 35 in 2016, numbered 71 million, and Boomers (ages 52 to 70) numbered 74 million. Millennials are expected to overtake Boomers in population in 2019 as their numbers swell to 73 million and Boomers decline to 72 million.
Millennial women may be on a collision course with financial disaster
- Millennial women seriously lag men in their financial aspirations, compared with data from the same study two years ago.
- The reasons for this gulf include social media, career goals and family priorities.
- This financial gap could mean women are setting themselves up for financial derailment in the future.
“Men tend to value money and feel more pressure to provide for a family,” Bohlsen said. “For women, it’s time and flexibility. The long-term goal is having that work-life balance.”
“There are now 5.5 million women in the US versus only 4.1 million men who are college graduates aged 22 to 29. That’s 33 percent more women than men. (This is the demographic of 365dolf)