Jacob’s company, Threadless.com, pioneered the idea of creating an online community that organically determines the nature of the site and the revenue streams.
I was thinking about this yesterday when my husband, George, went to 5 stores trying to find an inflatable tube for sledding. “Oh, we’re a camping store.” “Oh, we only sell hard sleds and saucers.” Five retail stores, all hurting for business in this economy, all narrowly defining themselves according to what they want to be instead of what people are asking for. It’s Wisconsin. It’s winter. The tubes are easier on your spine if you’re over 40 and joining in the fun on the sledding hill. Why not take a cue from the customers?
Authors and publishers also have to take a cue from the customers. If people find it daunting to buy a book that presents material in one form, then why dig your heels in and say, “Well, that’s what a book is. If you don’t like it, well, that’s your problem.”?