Home > Uncategorized > 100 Huntley Street is a Strong Factor in Requests at Canadian Bookstores

100 Huntley Street is a Strong Factor in Requests at Canadian Bookstores

While a book recommendation from the pulpit by a pastor is probably still the highest form of endorsement, appearances on Christian television probably drive the greatest number of bookstore requests, followed closely by Christian radio.

Years ago, an appearance on The 700 Club or Benny Hinn guaranteed that customers would flock to the stores looking for the book or resource in question, but today, with so many different programs available on so many cable, satellite and online channels, it’s harder to isolate a single program as having the greatest influence.

Furthermore, many of today’s televangelists have product of their own, some of which is sold only through their websites and call centers. I would wager to guess that overall, about half of this product is never made available to trade booksellers, or if it does, it often exists in different forms or is packaged  in different configurations.

An example of the latter was the Gaither Gospel series, where for years, customers who ordered the VHS (and later DVD) got the cassette (and later CD) free; a deal booksellers couldn’t match.  Another would be a ministry offering a book in paperback while retailers can only access the hardcover.

Ministry organizations purchase books by other authors in what is called the “premium” market. The pricing is similar to remainder pricing, but publishers are counting on the media exposure for the title in question to drive other requests through other vendor platforms.

In Canada, the daily Christian talk show 100 Huntley Street is probably the most powerful vehicle for book promotion, followed closely by James Robison Life Today and on radio, Focus on the Family.  But finding out ahead of time who is going to be a guest or featured author on those programs can be a challenge, though in fairness, Focus once published a monthly tip sheet for retailers giving the entire month lineup in advance.

In the case of someone like Benny Hinn, the titles were often obscure Charismatic products sold only through independent distributors such as Anchor, STL and Spring Arbor, which would sell out quickly, provided the ministry hadn’t already bought out all existing stock. Today, it’s still possible to see hourly tracking of wholesale suppliers running out shortly after the program airs in key markets. 

This week, we saw requests from J. Warner Wallace’s appearance on Huntley, but not Kari Jobe or Candice Cameron Bure. You can see previous guest listings at this page on their website and there are some insights into future guests in their subscriber magazine.

So…what drives product requests in your store?



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