Christian Retailing

Category Key: DVD Bible Studies Print Email
Written by Chris Fann   
Tuesday, 09 October 2012 02:28 PM America/New_York

ChrisFannBuilding sales of DVD Bible studies

Recently Zondervan conducted two independent surveys of consumers on its DVD Bible study buying habits. We asked small group leaders and women’s ministry leaders how they discovered the material that they ultimately used in their groups. The top two answers were exactly the same on both surveys: word of mouth and bookstore browsing. Other answers included online searching, catalogs, emails and references from other leaders.

People are coming into Christian retail stores to learn about what is new, available and trusted. How can you capitalize on this? I think there are several ways:

Understand it. Local retailers are in a unique position to learn about DVD Bible studies. Many online retailers do not get an opportunity to engage the consumer directly with personal recommendations. When I worked at a local bookstore several years ago, we were encouraged to take the product home on loan to experience it for ourselves. Consider allowing your employees to do the same so they can understand and recommend products to consumers who are browsing.

Stock it. You cannot sell it if you do not have it. I visited three local stores earlier this week and only two or three titles at each store had more than one copy each. The majority of people experience DVD Bible studies in groups—and need multiple copies. If customers cannot find the study locally, they will be forced to purchase online. My suggestion would be to stock four study guides for each DVD you carry and bring in studies from authors that your customers and employees resonate with, as well as new releases.

Organize it. With so many DVD Bible studies coming out each month, it’s difficult to know how to best display them all. Many stores alphabetize by author. This seems to be the simplest for the stores and consumers. I might also recommend adding three designated shelves—New Releases, Best-sellers and Employee Recommendations. Also consider placing the DVDs and study guides that correspond to trade books with the books.

Show it. Consumers are much more likely to purchase a DVD Bible study if they are able to experience it in some fashion. Consider playing trailers or clips on a television or computer with a looped or menued DVD.

With a little extra attention and taking advantage of the natural ways you have to engage the people that walk in your door, you can see your DVD Bible study sales increase.

Chris Fannis marketing director for small group studies and curriculum at Zondervan.