April 18, 2011

FAQ For Upcoming Gliebers Dresses Novella

In the next two weeks, I will publish something new ... a novella (i.e. longer than a short story, shorter than a novel) titled 'Gliebers Dresses:  Catalogs on Trial'.  Below, enjoy an anticipated list of frequently asked questions.  And then please buy the novella, ok?

Question:  Will the novella be available in print?
  • No.  And I can already hear folks howling ... "I don't have a Kindle, how will I be able to read this?" or "I don't have an iPad, how will I be able to read this?", or "are you an idiot, you need a multi-channel approach of print and digital".  
  • Here's the deal, folks.  Sometimes, you have to test things.  You have to try to do something out of the ordinary, or how are you ever going to learn how to chart a course to the future?  So I am going to test a digital-only strategy.  I will tell you how a digital-only strategy performs.
  • Even more important ... why should I charge you $7.95 so that Createspace can take $3.00 and and Amazon can take $3.00 and I get somewhere short of two dollars and you get the book in a week and you spend money compensating Amazon and Createspace for something that you have no idea will be any good?  How does that benefit you?  You know what benefits you?  $0.99 where I get very little money and you spread the word when you like the novella ... if I don't do a good job, you don't spread the word, and I don't make money.  Isn't that a better business model?
Question:  How do I gain access to the book if it isn't available in print?
Question:  How much will the novella cost?
  • I anticipate that the novella will cost no more than $0.99.
Question:  Why should I buy this, when you've always written these stories for free?
  • Again, how do you ever learn if you don't test things?  If you follow best practices, you're going to end up with a very boring, sanitary, mediocre outcome.  Let's try something different.

Question:  Why Fiction?
  • Where do I start?  I've written real posts, I've tweeted real messages, and I've written the Gliebers Dresses story.  You are more likely to absorb information if the message is written in a fictional story.  If I write the truth, folks have a tendency to criticize not the entire message, but a fraction of the message, throwing out the entire message as a result.  I've learned that it is really hard for a reader to critique a fictional character.  So, we'll go with fiction!
Question:  What is the story about?
  • In this novella, newly appointed CEO Roger Morgan is struggling with a floundering catalog business model that did not achieve the lofty expectations of experts who predicted that a multi-channel business model would produce unfettered success.  So, Mr. Morgan orders that catalog marketing be "put on trial".  Chip Cayman, well-known new media consultant, will play the role of the prosecuting attorney.  Faith Kelley, executive administrative assistant, will defend catalog marketing.  Mr. Morgan will be the Judge.  The Executive Team will be witnesses.  If catalog marketing is found guilty of being irrelevant in a new media environment, Gliebers Dresses will make dramatic changes to the business model.  If catalog marketing is found innocent, expect a significant doubling of efforts in catalog marketing, going forward.  What do you think will happen?
Question:  Why should I care about this novella?
  • When is the last time your Executive Team had to truly defend your business model?  Imagine being responsible for DVDs through the mail at Netflix ... could you defend the investment in your channel?  Or being the retail executive at Blockbuster ... could you defend a continued investment in stores?  Or being the CEO of Cuddledown of Maine ... could you defend your business model against a new media expert demanding that you stop mailing catalogs and instead supplement your business with iPad apps and social media and trigger-based e-mail marketing and paid search methodologies that are deeply integrated with your merchandising system?  Could you, as a business leader, defend your channel in a court of law?  How would you answer the tough questions?  Could you be objective?  Do you have the data to defend your channel?  Give this a read, and then see if your Executive Team should be put through the paces that the Gliebers Dresses team is put through.
Your opportunity to purchase this novella is coming, in less than two weeks, maybe even later this week!!  Be ready.

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