Reading Between The Lines: How To Engage New Zealand’s Bookworms

Reading Between The Lines: How To Engage New Zealand’s Bookworms


New Zealanders love to read. Around 1.9 million Kiwis aged over 10 say they read a book every week – the second most popular leisure activity after walking. In 2016 alone, Nielsen BookScan revealed that 4.9 million books were sold in New Zealand for a total value of $114.2 million.

Results from Nielsen’s Consumer & Media Insight (CMI) survey shows that there are some significant demographic differences between digital book readers (those that own a dedicated book reader device) and all book readers.

Digital book readers are now owned by 445,000 people in New Zealand, a figure that has steadily grown over the past five years. This trend, however, is changing with only 2% of the population saying they intend to buy an e-reader device next year, suggesting a shift towards other devices for reading.

The majority of digital book readers are older adults, followed by adults with young children. The digital book reader is more likely to live in Auckland or Wellington, have a higher household income than the average Kiwi and spend 23% more on all types of books.

In comparison, the average New Zealand reader (all types of books) is more likely to be female. They are also 29% more likely to have dependent children (versus the total population) – spurring a growth in both children’s fiction and picture books.

So what is the most effective way to reach and connect with New Zealand’s bookworms? Purchase a copy of the Nielsen Book Report 2017 now!


Nielsen Book is a leading provider of search, discovery, commerce, consumer research and retail sales analysis services internationally. Nielsen runs the Registration Agencies (ISBN and SAN Agencies for UK & Ireland, ISTC), provides search and discovery products through its Nielsen BookData product range, electronic trading via Nielsen BookNet and PubEasy services, retail sales analysis via Nielsen BookScan in 9 countries globally, consumer research through its Books and Consumer Survey (UK) and e-book sales through its Nielsen PubTrack Digital Service. Nielsen Book employs 100 staff. The company is wholly owned by Nielsen. For more information, please visit:


Nielsen Consumer and Media Insights is a national, demographically representative survey conducted throughout the year in conjunction with the NZ Readership Survey. It includes detailed ‘recall’ information on New Zealanders who are shopping online, including their demographics and lifestyle of Book Readers. The robust sample of 11,000 used in this methodology gives us highly accurate and versatile information. The Nielsen Book Report 2017 uses data taken from the Consumer and Media Insights database Q1 2016 – Q4 2016, unless otherwise specified. The Nielsen Online Retail Report 2016 uses data taken from the Consumer and Media Insights database Q1 2015 – Q4 2015, unless otherwise specified. All Consumer and Media Insights data in this report uses a base sample of adults aged 18+.