William H.

Denny Hatch is the author of six books on marketing and four novels, and is a direct marketing writer, designer and consultant. His latest book is “Write Everything Right!” Visit him at dennyhatch.com.

That Bookspan—the amalgam of the old Book-of-the-Month and Literary Guild—was cited and fined for treating customers badly is a shame. It’s true that the negative option book club is—without question—the most complex of direct marketing business models. It operates under a crushing schedule of 15 mailing cycles a year. Ten to 15 different kinds of communications between the member and the club could be in the mail at any given time: packages of books, returned books, announcements of new books, rejection (do-not-ship) slips, bills, statements, dunning efforts, payments, bonus book orders and bonus books shipped. All of these transactions are date sensitive. If a rejection

By Denny Hatch John Stevenson and Bill Houghton led charmed lives. As president and proprietor of Greystone Press, John Stevenson pioneered the publishing and marketing of the continuity series that dominated the 1960s and '70s. Among them: The Practical Handyman's Encyclopedia, and The Practical Encyclopedia of Good Decorating and Home Improvement. Born in England, Stevenson attended the London School of Economics and, after working as a journalist in Australia, came to this country where he worked for 20th Century Fox in Los Angeles and later as promotions manager of the New York Post and at Doubleday. He started Greystone on

More Blogs