What "Marketing" Means

February 2003
by Brian Jud

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One of the most misused words in the publishing business is “marketing.” Some people think it’s synonymous with “selling,” but it is not. Others think it means “publishing,” but it does not. Marketing involves a distinct philosophy that, if understood and applied properly, will help your business become more profitable.

Four concepts of marketing are popular with publishers. Only one will yield long-term success.

What I call the “Publishing Concept” holds that consumers will favor titles that are widely available and low in cost. Its devotees focus on a mass market and concentrate on achieving high production efficiency and wide distribution.

The “Product Concept” is the “better mousetrap” philosophy. It assumes consumers will favor titles that offer the most quality in terms of appearance and content. Here the emphasis is on cover design and writing, and publishers sometimes get caught up in love affairs with their titles, failing to notice if the market is less enamored.

Product-oriented publishers often create their titles with little or no reader input. They believe readers cannot know what kind of books they want until they see what is available. Trusting that their authors and editors understand the market, they often do not even examine competitors’ titles.

The “Selling Concept” rests on the belief that consumers, if left alone, will…IBPA Members – Click here to view the full article (login required).

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