Just In Case You Forgot: Why Plan O Grams Dont Work. Part wev

Quick post today. I’m still in the middle of budgeting hell.

I’ve mentioned it in the past, I think we often do a pretty poor job of merchandising our magazines at retail. We also seem to fail at marketing our magazines to the public.

As an industry, we need to give people a reason to stop what they’re doing and buy our stuff.

But this just ain’t going to work.

Uncut is Unsold

I took this shot at a major chain bookstore that just escaped a Board of Directors overhaul from hell. This open spot was right at eye level on the front row of the first magazine rack. So when you walked in the front door, turned right to head towards the cafe, there it was, staring at you right in the eye.

Why does this happen? It’s easy to blame it on the retailer. They don’t train their staff to properly merchandise the rack. So some poor kid firmly who’d rather be working the register believes that the magazine that’s labeled in that spot absolutely, positively, has to be there. After all, that’s the way it is at the check out and on the promo wings. Right?

I lay the blame firmly at our feet. We publishers need to do a better job. We need to make our case better. We need get upfront with our distributors, wholesalers and retailers in showing them the best ways to merchandise our product.

This simple mathematical forumla explains it all:

Uncovered wood = No Retail $’s sold.

It’s that simple.

And, yes, I did talk to the merchandising clerk and was politely told that that the only magazine that can go in a marked spot is the magazine that is marked for that spot.


About Those Kindle vs. iPad at the Pool Ads

The answer, actually, about which one I would want would be neither. At least while I’m at the pool.

The opening paragraphs from this article in MacNewsWorld got me thinking about the Kindle ad that a lot of people I work with have been talking about.

If you’re at a public pool, or even a swanky 5 star resort, would you put down your $139.00 Kindle or your $499.00 iPad and go take a dip?

Where to hide my Kindle?

If you’re at a great beach in Florida, or California, or Texas, or the South of France or even here on Lake Michigan, and you decide to go take a dip. Are you going to…..?

The crab stole my iPad.

You can hide your smart phone in your shoe. If it gets stolen or blows up because a sand fly laid some eggs in it, you can get a replacement pretty easily if you’re insured.

What’s insurance on an iPad or Kindle?

I use my web enabled aspects of my smart phone way more when I’m outside than when I’m inside. In the car, at retail checks, on walks. It would be nice if it had a screen I could see in direct sunlight. It doesn’t. So reading on it outside pretty much is a non-starter. In fact, at times, the web enabled stuff is more of a pain than it’s worth.

Just so I don’t get spanked by Bob Sacks or any of his devout followers, this isn’t a print vs. digital stream of consciousness. This is just something that occurred to me. We still have a ways to go with this stuff and, yes, I am on board. All the way into the glorious future!

So at my next beach vacation (Dear Lord…Please!)  I’ll be  way more willing to sacrifice a paperback or even a much cherished hard back to the vagaries of vacation wet spots or theives than a piece of electronics. Heck there’s a reason I don’t bring library books to the beach either.

Regarding Chris Maxer’s article in MacNewsWorld, I suggest you read it all the way through. He makes some excellent points about where Apple should go with regards to subscription models.