Barnes & Noble’s Big Problem – and a Solution

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nookBarnes & Noble has a big problem. It’s not Amazon, the decline of physical retail or a falling stock price. It’s Nook.

Nook is supposed to be the company’s white knight, according to CEO William Lynch, who told investors after B&N’s third-quarter that Nook was about to scale to profitability. In the fourth-quarter, Nook continued to lose money and actually had less revenue and fewer tablet sales than in the same quarter a year ago. Very worrisome for proponents of the ailing book retail chain.

What should the nation’s largest bricks-and-mortar bookseller, a multi-billion dollar concern, do? It’s simple: copy Amazon.

Amazon’s Kindle business is the cream of the crop when it comes to selling ebooks. It has low prices, tons of exclusive content and the best customer experience. Read much more about Barnes & Noble’s problem and the solution here.


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The rest of the day’s top news:

Canada’s Indigo Bookstore Chain Mirror’s B&N’s Poor Performance (Pub Lunch)
The largest bookstore chain in Canada reported a weak holiday sales quarter, led by lower-than-expected revenue on selling e-readers. Sound familiar?

The Main Factor in an Author’s Decision to Self-Publish or Work With a Publisher (DBW)
During a recent appearance on NPR’s All Things Considered, future Hachette CEO Michael Pietsch said that the reason authors choose publishers is “marketing.” That might be true in his vast experience with a select subset of authors, but our survey of nearly 5,000 authors reveals this not to be the case. What is the main factor in an author’s decision? Distribution. Learn much more about what authors want in our free webcast on the topic later today.

Building a Marketing Strategy From Scratch (DBW)
New how-to micro-zine start-up Holocene will be focusing on transparency, openness and two-way dialogues when it comes to building its marketing strategy. How would you build a marketing strategy from scratch if you had the opportunity?

HarperCollins Had “Favorable Second Quarter” (Pub Lunch)
News Corp released a financial statement detailing its second-quarter performance but said little about its HarperCollins publishing unit.

Innovative Publishing: Shuffle From Tonto Books (DBW)
As e-reader adoption begins to wane and consumers buy more tablet computers, publishers are scrambling to provide the enhanced, innovative reading experiences readers are coming to expect. Here is the story of a one such award-winning experience.

Ebooks in Turkey (DBW)
China, Russia and India may represent the next big opportunities for publishers when it comes to ebook expansion but smaller markets shouldn’t be overlooked when possible. Ebooks have grown by 120% annually in Turkey since their introduction in the country in 2010.

Readmill Now on iPhone (DBW)
Digital reading platform Readmill now has an iPhone app to “cater towards the growing number of people wanting to read ebooks via their smartphones.” More on that trend here.

HMH + Samsung for Learning (DBW)
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt has inked a partnership with Samsung to brings its learning app to the increasingly popular Galaxy tablet computer.

Wiley Adds ReadCube Reader to Online Library (EContent)
Wiley Online Library has added the ReadCube Web Reader for PDFs. The reader allows in-line citations, annotations and more that enhances the experience for users.

Boring But Important: KDP Goes EFT (Catherine, Caffeinated)
Amazon will now offer the option to Kindle Direct Publishing self-published authors to receive royalty payments in the currency of their choice via electronic fund transfer, simplifying the process by which authors get paid.

Bookish: Another Review (Book Riot)
The nut: Bookish is “attractive” with an “above-average recommendation engine” but it might not be enough to compete with Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Goodreads and others. Related: Bookish Launch | Why Bookish Will Fail – Or Succeed.

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Image Credit: nook image via Shutterstock

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