The Potato Chip Story: Pick the Medium; Package the Message

October 2004
by Mike Goodman

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Dialogue Press is about to celebrate its fifth anniversary as a small publisher. My wife and I started out with a few part-time employees/contractors and one title, then added a second title, did some consulting/packaging and ghostwriting, and now teach classes and offer other services for small press/self-publishers and novice authors.

Before we started this, I was a full-time management consultant, specializing in business planning, marketing strategy, and innovative marketing solutions. Clients spanned the full spectrum from small startups to Fortune 100 corporations, consumer and industrial companies, B2B–you name it.

Considering that my roots go back to brand management at Procter & Gamble, Frito-Lay, and International Playtex, you might think that I got into publishing with all the marketing knowhow we’d need. Well, the background certainly came in handy, but, as we learned early on, publishing is different enough from other industries that significant retooling of strategies and tactics is necessary in order to succeed.

More specifically, we learned that (1) marketing fundamentals always apply–good marketing is good marketing in any industry; (2) some issues are so peculiar to publishing that you might never understand them if you don’t have someone to explain them; and (3) translating solid marketing principles from other industries into publishing could take quite a while if you don’t recognize the differences up fron…IBPA Members – Click here to view the full article (login required).

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