Posts Tagged ‘louisville’

Photo: Frankie Steele, The (Louisville) Courier-Journal
Carmichael’s Kids indie bookstore at its opening. Writer Shea Serrano recently directed his Twitter followers to the online store. The move generated more than 1,100 orders in a day.

Say what? I thought it was agreed that online shopping has killed retail. But wait! Maybe social media can save the day.

USA Today recently reposted an article by Jeffrey Lee Puckett from the Louisville Courier-Journal that highlights the possibilities. (Hat Tip: ArtsJournal.)

“Two years ago, [writer Shea Serrano] and some friends started the FOH [not translatable for family blog] ARMY and began practicing random acts of kindness such as raising money to help send a teacher to Turkey.

“Wednesday [May 17] was the group’s first FOH Indie Bookstore Day. Carmichael’s [Kids] was endorsed by Serrano after one of the store’s employees, Mark Schultz, messaged Serrano and questioned his decision to include a link to Amazon in an earlier tweet.

” ‘Some guy who works there sent me a message one day and he seemed nice so that’s why I decided to try and do the 1K in a Day thing for them,’ Serrano said in a Twitter message. …

“Serrano is best-known for his 2015 book, The Rap Year Book: The Most Important Rap Song From Every Year Since 1979, Discussed, Debated, and Deconstructed. …

‘The really cool thing is that he’s not encouraging people to buy his book. He’s encouraging people to buy any book,’ said Carol Besse, co-owner of Carmichael’s. ‘The orders have been so interesting, all across the board, all good stuff.’

“To pay back Serrano’s kindness, Carmichael’s will offer free shipping on all FOH ARMY orders, Besse said.” More here.

This twitter effort strikes me as a variation of the cash mob, which I don’t believe can be the salvation of a retail business in and of itself. Although I have to say the West Concord 5&10, which was the focus of a cash mob I described here, is still going.

The Holy Grail for retail will probably be some combination of online and bricks-and-mortar that recognizes customers like to have their purchases delivered to their homes and that also takes into account what sorts of products absolutely need to be handled before purchase.

But the article shows that it doesn’t hurt to have employees who notice Amazon references on social media and say, “Hey, what about us little guys?”

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