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Old 05-01-17, 01:18 AM   #1
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Evolution of the Direct Market

Interesting reading from the founder of Mile High Comics about the real history behind the direct market. Lots of developments from the 1970s I was only vaguely aware of and how Star Wars possibly saved the comic book industry in 1977.
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Old 07-26-17, 03:52 PM   #2
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Re: Evolution of the Direct Market

I'm only partway thru it, but it is fascinating so far. Thanks PS.
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Old 07-26-17, 11:22 PM   #3
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Re: Evolution of the Direct Market

I feel like I've read part of this before, though that may have just been a different account of the same occurrences. I'm still working my way through but his summary of the letter he wrote Marvel back in '79 struck a chord with me:

o paraphrase my basic theme, I asked rhetorically "Why should I commit the rest of my life to working within the comics world if you idiots are rapidly running Marvel into the ground through your remarkably stupid and unprofessional policies?"
And then in the actual letter itself:

Another point is that we do not just salvage customers you otherwise would have lost, we also create new ones. At 40 cents and up, comics are no longer able to sell themselves. You have made the product so thin and unattractive with advertising that it takes salesmanship to get them to sell, even to collectors. How much salesmanship do you get in a 7-11? We go out of our way to sell comics, they are our main business. (For example, the Superman the Movie book from DC...I set up a stand in a local theater and sold over 1200). Isn't it about time we got some help and support?
Also the guy was only 24 years old. I'm just getting to the Jim Shooter part but Shooter at the time must have been around 26, having started more than a decade earlier in comics at the tender age of 14.

Excellent analysis of the real cost of focusing on the direct market, and removing the entry point for a lot of potential readers, in this part:

Last edited by fujishig; 07-26-17 at 11:47 PM.
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