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How Independent Bookstores Have Thrived in Spite of

Der überraschende Befund: „Between 2009 and 2015, the ABA [American Booksellers Association] reported a 35 percent growth in the number of independent booksellers, from 1,651 stores to 2,227.“ Ryan Raffaelli (Harvard Business School) hat sich auf eine umfassende Spurensuche begeben. Nach Auswertung seiner Feldstudien sieht er die Ursache für das Wiederaufleben der Buchläden in den “3 C’s”:

  • community: „Independent booksellers were some of the first to champion the idea of localism; … by stressing a strong connection to local community values.“
  • curation: „Independent booksellers began to focus on curating inventory that allowed them to provide a more personal and specialized customer experience. …“
  • convening: „Independent booksellers also started to promote their stores as intellectual centers for convening customers with likeminded interests—offering lectures, book signings, game nights, children’s story times, young adult reading groups, even birthday parties. …“

Verstärkend kam hinzu, dass die ABA den Erfahrungsaustausch der Independent Booksellers aktiv unterstützte. Das Resümee des Feldforschers dürfte auch die Buchhandlungen, Bibliotheken und Volkshochschulen hierzulande interessieren:

“The theoretical and managerial lessons we can learn from independent bookstores have implications for a wide array of traditional brick-and-mortar businesses facing technological change,” Raffaelli says. “But this has been an especially fascinating industry to study because indie booksellers provide us with a story of hope.”

Carmen Nobel, Harvard Business School/ Working Knowledge, 20. November 2017

Bildquelle: Pj Accetturo (Unsplash)

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