Update Announcements

by Craig Stark

29 April 2013

Part II of a two-part Easton Press series today, this time some discussion about marketing to maximize outcomes in the midst of a marketplace downturn. If you missed Part I, click here.

Also today, a primer on pagination. Few booksellers paginate their books, let alone collate them, but higher dollar books can sometimes benefit from more complete descriptions. See how it's done in our second article.

An announcement: BookThink's links page has been gutted and revised/updated to restore its usefulness to booksellers. We all know only too well what happens to links pages over time: They gradually grow obsolete, eventually becoming near useless, and since few seem willing to maintain them, there are very few worth bookmarking. I'd like to change that here, keep our links page fresh and relevant, but I'll need a reason to do it - i.e., traffic. If I see that the page is actually getting used, I'll review the links regularly and edit them when necessary. I welcome suggestions for new links and reports on broken links, but please note that BookThink does not participate in links exchanges nor do we accept links for promotional purposes. Click here to view the page.

I truly appreciate the feedback I get from you guys, but as you probably know, for the most part I don't publish it. However, I received a note from bookseller Eric Griffin this week that caught my eye particularly because it so clearly illustrates that what we're trying to teach here might actually work! So, here it is:

Hi Craig,

I have been visiting BookThink and receiving The BookThinker for several years. I just wanted to write and say thanks for the information you offer and the impact it has made on my business. I started out 4 years ago selling exclusively on Amazon. I mostly sold books that could be located with a scanner. I slowly grew and expanded to most all sites available through AOB [The Art of Books]. About two years ago I took to heart your challenge or warning that the future was in older, antiquarian, or books collected more for an object than content to read. I have been selling through an eBay store for about a year and I am aggressively increasing my average listing/selling price. I just can't tell you how much I have learned from the information you offer. I have purchased some from you, but not nearly enough to compensate you for what you have delivered. I consider myself internet and network savvy. I have sought information on book selling aggressively (it's a sickness, I know). I was telling my wife just the other day that I am astounded at the information you offer (archives) and that absolutely no one that I can locate is providing the same professional content as BookThink.

If my book selling was as profitable as I wanted it to be I would send you a big check along with my thanks. But ... 3 kids, 2 in college ... you understand. I am very serious when I say I appreciate what you offer. You have impacted my business and helped me grow a business I love. Thank you!

Chapter 12 of BookThink's Guide to Online Bookselling has been delivered to subscribers. This is a comprehensive, in-progress bookselling how-to available by subscription here. It's approximately half completed, and new subscribers will receive current and all remaining chapters as they are issued.

Chapter 12, by the way, is the first in a series of chapters on how to buy inventory, and it presents an inductive, statistical method for identifying authors and titles that currently generate the most interest in the marketplace, present the most opportunities for us in the field, and provide the highest returns. Can't ask for much more than that, and believe me, this is a method anybody can master.

For those of you not familiar with the guide, a list of completed chapters may give you a better sense of what's going on:

1. Essential Book History for Booksellers

2. How Books Are Made

3. Why Bookselling?

4. How to Make Money Selling Books While You're Learning How to Sell Books: First Things First

5. How to Make Money Selling Books While You're Learning How to Sell Books: Closing the Gap on Your Competition

6. Trust: The Sine Qua Non of Bookselling

7. Getting Down to Business: Why Your ASP Will Make You or Break You

8. How to Identify First Editions: Books That Aren't, Part I

9. How to Identify First Editions: Books That Aren't, Part II

10. How to Identify First Editions: Books That Are, Part III

11. How to Identify First Editions: Books That Are, Part IV (The Essential Reference Library)

12. How to Buy Inventory: Part I, Building Hot Lists

BookThink's popular First Edition Library Checklist has been reformatted to PDF and now includes thumbnail photos of cover art for all FEL titles. The FEL, for those not familiar with it, is a series of extraordinarily faithful first edition facsimiles of over 100 notable publications, most of them issued with protective slipcases. Many are now out of print and all are enthusiastically collected. As booksellers, it pays for you to know of them and about them. Our checklist package includes a checklist of all 111 FEL titles, thumbnail images of cover art, indications of most and least valuable titles, indications of rarest and most common titles, detailed issue points (where applicable), explanatory notes, and the full text of Stan Shelley's superb, illustrated primer on the First Edition Library.

If you have purchased the earlier version (which was available in DOC and TXT formats), you can upgrade to the new version for $5. The price for first time buyers is $14.99. Either option can be exercised by clicking here.

BookThink's forum is up and running again. You can get to it by clicking this link.

Also, BookThink's complete Gold Edition is now available in PDF format. All 59 Gold Editions have been recently updated (and in some cases expanded) and combined into a PDF format e-book. A table of contents presents clickable report titles, and the entire document is searchable by keywords. The PDF format ensures 100% compatibility with all computers, tablets and smartphones, and it's easier than ever to take the Gold Edition with you on scouting trips. Purchase it here for $59.99.

Click here to see several sample pages. (And yes, we're working on converting and updating 50/50 and QMR as well.)

Important: If you have previously purchased a complete Gold Edition package, this e-book is available to you at no charge. Email me at editor@bookthink.com for your copy. Also, if you have purchased any Gold Edition issues either singly or in groups at any time, we will subtract those purchases from the price of the e-book. Again, email me at editor@bookthink.com and we will research your purchases and forward a discounted invoice reflecting them.

Finally, the entire BookThink output of Gold Editions, 50/50's and QMR's is available to purchase as a complete package here. Again, if you have previously purchased any issues, we will subtract these from the total, and once you purchase them, you will be entitled to any future updates at no additional cost.

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