I wanted to check in and let you all know that I’m alive and I haven’t forgotten about the SFB. Things have been heating up quite a bit around here and between launching bookflipping 2.0 with Bryan Young and working on Murfbooks and the Dollar Book Swap I have had a full plate.
I have been doing some experiments and making some big strides in my businesses that I think will be very beneficial to the community.
One of the things I’m really excited about is the operations manual and training material for Murfbooks we have been putting together. I am hoping to make that available at some point in the future.
I’ve recently met with some other large booksellers and one of the things I am finding is that there isn’t a ton of agreement on best practices in regards to processing books.
I contend that the way we do it is pretty darn good and I have not been impressed with the alternatives I have seen lately.
The Dollar Book Swap is eating up large chunks of my time these past couple of months. It really is a lot of fun to start interacting with the community. I really feel like we are doing some good and having positive customer interactions is a novel feeling when on Amazon all you ever hear from are upset customers.
Over the past few months we have used over $25,000 in ad spend to grow from nothing at all to 12,000 Facebook fans, a 2500 person email list, a 1000 person Facebook group, and a bunch of earned media, all while maintaining profitability and growing our customer base.
I feel like if I can use Facebook ads to get people to come out to a dusty old warehouse in droves to buy books, I’ll certainly be able to get the word out about a real retail bookstore or our digital products.
What this process has really taught me is that having a good product doesn’t mean anything at all if you don’t have the marketing ability to get it in front of the right audience. In our case the right audience is middle class women aged 25-45. Those are the people that we target for the Dollar Book Swap.
You guys know that I love to get all the meat off the bone and with a warehouse Booksale we are able to monetize more of our books than ever now. This allows us to take greater risks on new sources and pay more for some material if we need to because our yield is that much greater.
We have also found much more low cost material that is higher quality as well.
On the recycling side we are finding more and better outlets for our book recycling which means increased revenue for our scrap as well.
I feel like our operation is light years ahead of where we were just a year ago, and that next year will be even better.
A large and growing percentage of revenue is coming from outside Amazon which is a really great feeling.
Lastly my father is retiring from his job at the end of the year and taking over operational control of Murfbooks. I’m very excited about that since it should allow me to focus more on my other businesses and spend more time with you guys.
Thanks for sticking around and checking in with me. I promise not to be gone from the blog for this long again. Have a merry Christmas and I’ll talk to you soon.
You are really close to getting actionable info to help you take your business to the next level or to start one from scratch.