MarketWatch First Take
Sex sells -- and sells and sells7/9/12 1:15 PM ET (MarketWatch)Print
NEW YORK (MarketWatch) -- You had better believe that sex sells -- and sells and sells. Just ask the people raking it in the money from sales of the hot-selling "Fifty Shades" series
The erotic trilogy is expected to reach the milestone of 20 million sales in the U.S., according to The Wall Street Journal. It's one of the "fastest-selling book series in recent memory," the newspaper declared.
The saga depicts the fictional adventures and sexual encounters of a 21-year-old English-literature student. Its runaway popularity with women readers -- seemingly of all sorts of age groups --has enabled the series to become among 2012's "it" books, the ones everyone has either read, wants to read or can't stop whispering about to their friends.
As of July 2, the trilogy," beginning with "Fifty Shades of Grey" has already amassed sales of 19.4 million in print and e-book forms since its U.S. publication in March.
What does this trend mean? Its lesson is simple and timeless: sex sells.
The erotic book series has a universal, timeless appeal and follows such previous eye-catchers, from previous generations, as "Story of O" and Erica Jong's "Fear of Flying."
What makes these books stand out, perhaps, is more than their explicit content. Today, there are so many forms of media and outlets for publicity, thanks to the Internet, that a specific book's word of mouth appeal can gather momentum faster than ever.
Maybe the publisher should think of adding this subtitle to the next installment of the series: "Fifty Shades of Ka-ching."