business news in context, analysis with attitude

by Kevin Coupe

I was talking to my sister, Amy Coupe, last night when she drew my attention to a recent and highly successful promotion run by independent bookstores in Connecticut.

Amy is a media specialist at a local elementary school, and is a devotee of independent bookstores; she’s visited them all over the country, and trumpets their advantages over the Amazon experience. (She’s been known to take me to task for my affection for Amazon.)

According to Amy, 20 participating independent bookstores in Connecticut decided to celebrate Independent Bookstore Day on Saturday, April 28, by offering the following incentive: Shoppers could obtain a Connecticut Independent Bookstore Day Passport at any participating store and, if they visited 15 out of the 20 stores on April 28 and 29 - and got it stamped - they could will receive a $25.00 gift card from each participating location.

More than 100 customers won the promotion, Amy said … and she was one of them.

That’s remarkable. Certainly worth noting. And an Eye-Opener.

I’ve never argued that bricks-and-mortar stores are dying … just that mediocre bricks-and-mortar stores are endangered, and that they deserve to be, because they are not doing what they need to do to survive.

This is an example of a segment of the retail community taking control of its own destiny. It was a terrific idea … though, it must be said, that it must be followed up by more terrific ideas and strategies and tactics that differentiate these stores from their physical and digital brethren.
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