Thursday, January 27, 2011


My life is a dichotomy when it comes to breaking rules.

I've broken them when I had to move forward, such as in areas of typography, and business.

typography: I designed books differently than the usual publishers. I get criticized and praised for that. Almost always by those whoa re not peers.

business: just because everyone else is offering a 50% discount to resellers doesn't mean I have to. My books sell, I don't need to give them away like Verizon gives away phones, to get people to bring me "some" business.

On the other hand, if you don't have some strong guidelines, then all hell breaks loose as some people feel they are an "exception" to anything. I have a rule about that!

Recently I mentioned to some of my subscribers of my publications that I would be giving away the new book by Frank Brady, on Fischer, titled, Endgame. I just sent in the order this morning. I ordered a few extra for my business because after all, the winners would own the book (from me) and therefore, most likely not buy one from me. It usually works like that.

I'm the one giving away the books and paying for the postage so I get to make the rules. To get into the "select" 20 for this $25.99 book (And I will ship them out as soon as I get them) you had to have purchased at least $750 worth of stuff from me since the beginning of Feb. 2009 to the end of 2010. And, you had to have a profit margin to net of 33% or higher. That last part is the stickler.

Some bought a lot of things but I didn't make much from the sale. And, if I don't make much, I'm not around for long. Giving away some things as I did to get people to purchase helps a little, but not in the long run.

So those who ordered things (DVDs, and Books) along with publication works created by me, stood to do the best.

The numbers are taken from 150 buyers in that time period. Dealers and non chess purchasers were excluded. That means 1 in 13.

I ended with 21 who satisfied the requirements, but one was at 31% in the profit ratio. So I sat on a thumbtack and I decided to give him a copy of ENDGAME, and he would be #21. Since only if you get a copy of the book will you know if you were a winner--you'll have to wait a few weeks. The numbers were taken from my accounting program and the winners worked out from an Excel Spreadsheet. I want to congratulate you as well as those who came close (I know that is paltry consolation, but there has to be a cut off). Since those who didn't win won't get a FREE book that means send the book won't lower my profit margin from you! (The silver lining in the cloud, as it were.)

A few big spenders were actually way down on the profitability list, that meant you could lose ground next year and get mad at me!!! (Yes, me.) Some only order stuff that's been heavily discounted, or given away, etc. As you no doubt understand, that's a hard-to-calculate "goodwill" percentage.

If you want to start off well for THIS year (only this year will be considered the next time, the dual year was a one time thing), I have the following available:
Chess Book Camp 2011 Las Vegas (Min. $199, Max. $250).
Gold Card for 2011 $50
Chess EXTRAS $65 ($50 is you have a Gold Card 2011)
The Chess Reports $69.95 (will include a CD)
Purdy Chess Chronicles $69.95.
My Search for Chess Perfection $39.95 by Purdy
The Chess Assassin's Business Manual $30
The Critical Secret for Success at Chess or Anything Else $79.95
My various Andrew Martin DVDs.

My margins are high on these because I don't get paid unless I make some $$$. I'm still paying off my expenses on these gems.

Hope to hear from you.

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