Category: Marketing

If I was Barnes & Noble

The New York Times published a couple days ago a piece about Barnes & Noble. The title would set the mood: “The Bookstore’s Last Stand.” Well, that’s disheartening, specially when the focus of the story is about the nook (B&N’s response to the Kindle).

Really? The bookstore’s last stand is an e-book reader?

So, I started thinking: “What would I do if I was Barnes & Noble?” (or at least its CEO).

First of all, if I was Barnes & Noble, I would focus on the joy of reading a “live”, real book, instead of trying to catch the digital counterpart. Let me explain.

In that article I learned that B&N’s history goes back to 1873, before there were cars, the time when reading meant much more than today. Just imagine what a book did for a person at that time.

Funny thing is, books still have that magic. Specially paper books.

So, if I was Barnes & Noble I would use my budget to bring back the joy of reading a paper book. Imagine the possibilities. B&N could be the leader in the “offline” reading world: book clubs, dads reading to their kids, promoting the joy of turning the page and figuring out what’s next.

If I was B&N I would redesign my stores and make them more accessible for readers. I would put more tables, more chairs (confortable chairs). I would take off all hint of digital life (staring by turning off the free wi-fi) and make it a place to relax.

If I was B&N I would use my partnerships with the publishers to make readers feel special. I would do events, sure, but imagine that B&N hosted special readings with the authors’ true fans.

Why am I writing about B&N? Because I like them. I truly do. I spend at least 45 minutes there every time I visit (I have one within walking distance from where I live).

Sure, books may be cheaper at Amazon, and some of them are to be bought used (for which I’d recommend Better World Books), but for that feeling of walking through knowledge and world inspiration, B&N is the leader.



The True Meaning of “Free”

Cell Phone

We marketers are a creative crowd. Through our work, we can inspire people to join a movement, make a candidate win or simply buy a product or service.

However, there are marketers that like to “stretch the truth” at their convenience. Oddly enough, they are the ones that usually have long disclaimers via “fine print” that just contribute to send the profession’s image even closer to the bottom. Please note, however, that I’m not talking about spammers, “multi-level” promoters or the like; I’m talking about the “geniuses” at companies like AT&T, Verizon or Sprint with their “FREE Smartphone**” or “Buy one Windows Phone, Get One Free**”. I’m also talking to the creators of the “FREE $50 Gift card with your purchase”** or “FREE financial plan” (when you buy high commission, high expense financial products from me). Continue reading

Love this post… That’s what the free market is all about… I applaud the Chilean government for their free market mentality!

Oakley and the Chilean Miners - Publicity Goldmine Doing Well By Doing Good Move over, Lance Armstrong. Oakley has 33 new “celebrity” product endorsers. Unless you were trapped in a cave somewhere yourself over the last few weeks, you probably heard about the dramatic rescue of 33 Chilean miners who were trapped undergro … Read More

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