Chiki Sarkar, publisher, Juggernaut Books, has been instrumental in bringing books on the mobile platform. How is it going and what lays ahead, shares Chiki Sarkar in a brief conversation with AABP.
AABP: What is reason behind an e-platform for delivery of content?
Chiki: Because the smartphone usage among India’s young is a place of massive growth. I wanted to find a place for books there
AABP: How has been your journey so far?
Chiki: There have been start up challenges – doing too much, as fast as we can with a threadbare team. My team constantly complains about being burnt out. But on the other side, we hit 300k downloads in 6 months, and on the physical list have had a large number of bestsellers.
AABP: Tell us about your print books?
Chiki: I am a publisher – I want to publish my books in every format. There will always be physical sales, and I want to create an aggressive small list as well growing a new marketing and creating a new behaviour.
AABP: What are your partnerships plans with publishers, in terms of growth and reaching out. What other Indian languages do you plan to focus on?
Chiki: Juggernaut is both a publisher and a reading platform for other publishers to use. For some, it will also be a writing platform. We will launch books in Hindi soon.
AABP: How does the book commissioning process work with your team?
Chiki: We have a very long ideas meeting every Monday, which is great. That’s where we get our ideas. On some genres, we use our app data to also look at commissioning – what are people buying.
AABP: What is the average number of books you plan to bring out every year?
Chiki: We plan to bring about 100 in digital and 30-45 in physical form. We have books on all genres – literary stories, crime, love/sex/romance, religion, self help, business, history, politics, etc.
AABP: When you launch a book on the e-platform, how do you promote the same to your readers?
Chiki: We promote it through social, in app notifications, ads, and traditional press (extracts, reviews, interviews).
AABP: Your reader profile currently?
Chiki: It is 30 and under, mostly men.
AABP: What are the most preferred genres your readers like?
Chiki: Love and romance!
AABP: Considering conversion & platform costs, what are your thoughts on road ahead for this technology?
Chiki: It takes time to build a new habit and behaviour, so the key is to look at if usage, loyalty, and paid customers are constantly growing.