I’m so excited that a new Barnes & Noble bookstore is opening up across from my office tomorrow! I’ve been saving the gift card I got at Christmas for this moment and I know exactly what book I'm going to buy.
We haven’t had any bookstores that primarily sell new books in this area since Barnes & Noble closed two of their stores many years ago. A few local bookstores sell new books, but don't carry much, if any, romance, urban fantasy, or science fiction. So I’m super excited to be able to walk across on my lunch hour to buy books.
I’m also envisioning my lunch breaks on days when it’s too hot to take a walk. I’ll take my fold-up Bluetooth keyboard, find a table at B&N, and work on my book or answer email using just my phone.
However, from a business person’s perspective, I can’t understand why they aren’t making a big promotional push to let the community they’re opening. There’s a sign in the store window giving tomorrow as the opening date. Yet there’s nothing on the B&N website. I haven’t seen any advertisements in the local media, and even the management company’s website for the shopping plaza B&N is a part of doesn’t have any details about the opening.
Not only has B&N dropped the ball on those large announcement opportunities, but they should have reached out to do something with our office building. I see women reading on their lunch breaks all the time. If I was B&N, I’d have put up fliers or made an offer to the management to give a small discount to people who came over from our office.
So while I’m excited to have the B&N there as a reader, as a professional, I’m skeptical whether this is going to be a lasting venture for them. If little ol’ me, who is far from a marketing expert, can see that they’re already falling down on the job, how do they expect to drive enough traffic to make the store profitable?
C’mon, Barnes & Noble. Get your act together. There are a bunch of rabid readers across the street really hoping you can make this work.