Retailers complained that promotional activity for new titles was too close to the release date, denying them the chance to reorder based on their customers’ reactions, with sellouts of first prints too common. Stephenson replied that they would stick with their policy of fast second prints rather than massive initial overprints, but would try and make subsequent prints special with new cover art, and available with the next issue’s first print.
As for price points, Stephenson stressed they want to keep first trade paperback collections at $9.99 and encourage creators to choose a $2,99 price for individual issues rather than the increasingly more common $3.99 price.
The full returnability for big new launches was praised by retailers, but questions were asked why it was only the likes of the big name titles that hgot this treatments, with some wondering why the likes of Five Ghosts didn’t receive that kind of promotion. Eric stated that said they are reserving the returnability for titles they know will sell, not from lessor known creators. And joked that Robert Kirkman has to pay for every copy of Clone that gets returned. Eric talked about his problems with Diamond’s Previews as a marketing tool, in that it is directed to customers and retailers simultaneously. He also mentioned the aborted Showtime TV series of Chew, more of which can be read here…
We also got an update on the Jonathan Hickman, Ryan Bodenheim & Michael Garland series Secret, which stalled two issues in. Stephenson stated that Ryan had health issues preventing him from work, that the third issue will be resolicited for August and that issues 1 and 2 are both still available from Image.