Bookshops say that they have the viral TikTok trend #BookTok to thank for a recent increase in sales. The trend, which encourages young adults to purchase and read featured books, appears to have had a positive effect on the publishing industry.
#BookTok is a subculture within TikTok, where users create short videos to discuss, recommend, and review books. This has grown astronomically in popularity, with the hashtag acquiring over 176 billion views.
Sarah McConville, fiction buyer at QBD Books, has seen a significant increase in book sales, that she attributes largely to the #BookTok phenomenon.
“Young people have always been a big part of our customer base, but I would say that portion of our customers has gotten bigger in the last couple of years”, McConville said.
“#BookTok has been huge for us [QBD books] over the past couple of years and young people are driving that” she said.
Many bookshops across the country now feature a BookTok section in their bookstore, a dedicated shelf for the most popular books seen on the social media app.
“It’s generating conversations and ultimately selling books, and that’s what we in the industry are here for”, McConville said.
“I also like how no one can market to TikTok readers; they choose what they like and what to talk about”.
In an age where attention spans are shrinking, #BookTok has found a way to make books more accessible, as it continues to grow and evolve, this digital community plays a vital role in shaping the publishing industry and author recognition.
BookScan analyst Kristen McLean claims #BookTok is one of the industry’s most vital platforms for discovering and promoting new authors.
“#BookTok is really important for book discovery,” McLean said.
“In today’s social media-driven world, #BookTok is especially important as a place to find books for younger readers,” she said.
In the age of digital media, #BookTok has emerged as a cultural sensation, revolutionising reading habits among young people.
Society City is a secondhand bookshop and event space that offers a safe and cozy environment to relax whether that be to study, read or connect with friends. Society City is located along Crown streets, opposite spotlight and is open weekdays from 11 am to 5 pm and 10 am to 4 pm on Saturdays.