Writers and Editors (Pat McNees's blog)
RSS feed

Open Sky turns bloggers into a sales force

October 1, 2010

Tags: blogs, marketing

Erick Schonfeld wrote about Open Sky for TechCrunch in April in Launch: OpenSky Wants To Turn Bloggers Into Sellers Without Sacrificing Their Souls. "While OpenSky sounds at first like an affiliate network, it isn’t," writes Schonfeld. "Instead of sending customers off to other online stores, they send them to their own stores where they can track sales and follow up with personalized messages. OpenSky hand picks the publishers who are allowed to set up shops and sell in its network. It then strikes deals directly with manufacturers and distributors who agree to drop-ship any sold items to readers who click to buy through an OpenSky shop. Instead of the blogger getting a 3 to 10 percent affiliate fee, they split the net profits 50/50 with OpenSky. The economics work best obviously with high-margin products." Worth reading.

Mike Shatzkin describes how Mary Ann Naples has been taking Open Sky into the book business. Writes Shatzkin: "From the perspective of a guy who has been telling publishers to use their content as bait to attract and aggregate eyeballs because they’re bound to have remunerative value, Open Sky provides an answer to the question I face the most when I lay out my thinking. ('Great, Mike, but how am I going to make money?')

Shatzkin also writes about the new business model for college textbooks: Flat World Knowledge as well as an initiative by Macmillan and Ingram to provide POD delivery of "long tail" titles.

I love the Shatzkin Report. It gives us a better sense of where publishing may be headed. Definitely not your mother's book world.