Book of the Month: Making Reading Cool Again

Kim Carabis
4 min readMar 21, 2021
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Book of the Month was originally created in 1916 by copywriter Harry Scherman with the purpose of mail-order books to its members. Now, Book of the month is a subscription service that caters to each of its member's tastes and preferred genres to read. The goal of the company, originally set by its founder, is meant to motivate members to read more, research less about what books to read, and in the long run, spend less. The subscription is broken down into a few easy steps: first, you’re provided with five “wow-worthy” books, second, you decide if you want one or more books, and lastly, you read, review and repeat each month. The subscription starts at $9.99 for the first month, then increases to $14.99 per month. What makes this a great subscription is you can skip months as you please, without getting charged.

“Books are cool again. Kidding, books were always cool. Choose from the five best new reads every month and get them delivered.”

www.bookofthemonth.com

Target Market

Book of the Month is targeting a large group — people who like to read. But how do we make that group of people smaller and target more specific people? The technical, detailed answer is by demographics, psychographic, behavioral, and geographic market segmentation. What are our subscriber's lifestyles, values, purchasing habits, brand interactions, etc. Since Book of the Month reaches a large audience due to it being an online subscription box, what sets it apart from just going to the bookstore and purchasing a book off the shelf?

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Going into a bookstore can be overwhelming, and sometimes time-consuming. There are thousands of books of different genres, plots, authors; it’s hard to choose. After reading the back of dozens of different books, you either leave the bookstore and purchased a new book to read or you have left empty-handed. Book of the Month takes that out altogether. Now, instead of driving to the bookstore, rifle through books to find one that seems interesting enough to buy, Book of the Month delivers books catered to your tastes right to your door.

Book of the Month caters to two types of readers: one that loves to read and knows what they like, but does not have the time to go and purchase or rent books frequently; or a reader who sort of enjoys reading but needs a book that will spark their interest enough to actually enjoy it. Book of the Month subscription gives its target market the convenience of delivering books to their door, recommended books that take out the search for a new book, and they make it extremely easy to skip a month or cancel a subscription.

This subscription service markets convenience and affordability to its subscribers. Book of the Month takes out the time to search for a book to read while providing affordable prices. This subscription is perfect for the lifestyle of a busy person who works a full-time job and doesn’t have the time to search for genres they’ll enjoy.

www.bookofthemonth.com

Unique Selling Point

Book of the Month is unique in that the quality and the quantity of books are extremely affordable compared to purchasing from a bookstore. New, hardcover books can be up to $20–30. Book of the Month lets you choose from five popular books for $14.99 a month and you can choose more than just one book. Book of the Month also eliminates the time it takes to research books to read. Each subscriber is given five books to choose from that are highly rated and liked by other subscribers; you can choose one or more of these books. The best selling point of this subscription service is that there is no required commitment. If you choose to skip a month, you won’t be charged the service. Unlike subscription services like Netflix or Hulu, Book of the Month does not charge you if you choose to not use their service that month. And who doesn't like to save a little money?

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