Monday, March 8, 2010
Indie booksellers on Twitter know how valuable a tool it is not just for contacting customers and keeping them in touch with our stores, but also for staying connected with other booksellers across the country. Through it, we've been able to trade answers to the two most frequently asked questions amongst booksellers: "What are you reading?" and "What's working for you?"
There is no shortage of people talking about what they're reading, especially thanks to projects like #fridayreads. But the Emerging Leaders Project decided that we want to gather ideas on what's working all in one place, to make it easier to start and continue conversations about how indie bookstores are improving their stores and the communities they serve.
To that end, we'd like to start a new tradition on Mondays: #indievolution.
It's simple enough: as you go to work on Monday and start working through your inbox and recovering from the busy weekend, take a few minutes to think about what went best for you. Did you try a new type of authorless event? Did you take advantage of a coop opportunity? Is there a title that is outperforming even your wildest expectations? Did you move the staff picks wall? Did you change bags? We're constantly tinkering with our businesses to make them better. Which change did you make that worked?
Although the daily experience of bookselling is obviously our focus, you can also use the #indievolution hashtag to share broader ideas about the future of reading, bookselling, publishing, and literary culture. That zooming out is just as important as the nitty gritty. Like evolution, it isn't only about the small things we do every day to survive. It's about the grand arc of where we've been and where we're going.
Then, go to Twitter and post your thought with the hashtag #indievolution. That'll make it easy for everybody to look at other people's ideas and keep up with the conversation, even if they can't get to Twitter until later in the day, and it'll make it easier for us to collect the ideas and disseminate them more widely so as many people as possible can benefit from them.
If Twitter isn't your thing, then become fans of the Emerging Leaders Project on Facebook. Post your questions and ideas there. And we'll try to bring over some of the ideas culled from the Twitter hivemind.
Together, as a species of book people, we will survive. Let the #indievolution continue!