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CBD Scales Back Music Marketing in Print

CBD Fall 2013While the Christianbook.com website is buzzing with music releases, customers looking for the latest tunes in the 96-page September-October print catalog are in for a shock: There’s only 13 CDs listed.

The baker’s dozen music items consist of the new WoW 2014 CD on page 2, and a top dozen in another part of the catalog. While we didn’t see any children’s music-only resources, it’s possible that there are a few of those.

CBD’s catalogs consist of regular numbered pages as well as a series of pages inserted into the middle in some editions, but not others.  So presumably everyone gets pages 1-64, and some people get pages A1-A32. (Does anyone know why they do this?) The music is on a half page in the insert section. The rest of the media pages in the catalog are devoted to DVDs.

The question of course is: Why?  Why has a major mail-order and online retailer chosen to so radically de-emphasize its music department in print? Of course the downloads have never been listed in the print catalog but over the years CDs and accompaniment discs played a big part.

Is this a signal that music sales are declining faster than anyone wants to admit? Wouldn’t it make more sense to make music cutbacks after the Christmas gift-giving season? We’ll have to wait for the November-December edition to speculate on CBD’s long-term strategy.

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  1. September 4, 2013 at 12:35 pm

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