Edelweiss360 is a free email marketing tool that allows bookstores to promote titles and events to just the right customers—and then track conversion to sales. It includes a Campaign Builder that draws from a bookstore's own inventory and customer database as well as a Recommendation Engine that matches titles and events to customers based on past purchases. And, with Collaborative Consumer Marketing, publishers can sponsor placement in these email campaigns with the funds being paid out to booksellers.
Family-owned Letterpress Books adopted Edelweiss360 during the pandemic to support their email marketing. We spoke with Katherine Osborne, the Owner and Manager of Letterpress, about the process of getting started on 360, how they are currently using the tool, and the benefits they have seen since adopting it.
What is the story behind Letterpress Books? Could you share some background on the shop with us?
I have been a bookseller in the Portland, ME area for more than 30 years and my Mom (Karen) likes to say that I have wanted to run a bookstore since I was 5 years old, so when my parents moved back to Maine, we decided to open Letterpress Books together and the store will be 10 years old in October!
When did you get started using Edelweiss360? What was your experience like learning how to use the tool?
I attended a webinar offered by Edelweiss and 360 was really appealing because it looked like we could streamline our email newsletter process by using it. We used Mailchimp previously and keeping track of the new releases in a spreadsheet was a hassle. Edelweiss 360 is a real time-saver because I can just add the titles to our campaigns as I complete my orders. The learning process was pretty easy. We find 360 to be very user-friendly.
How has 360 changed your email marketing process? So far, what are the benefits your store has seen since adopting the tool?
Our email marketing process is about the same. 360 is similar to what we were doing before, but much easier. The time savings and also the monthly coop is great.
Is there a recent email campaign of yours using 360 that you are particularly proud of?
Since we started using 360 during the pandemic, it is primarily an informational and new release newsletter with book blurbs and staff reviews. We haven’t been doing author signings or special events.
When there are a lot of new releases that week, like at the beginning of the month, we split the newsletter into hardcover & paperback, or into adults & kid’s books—so they are not too long.
Do you have any tips or advice for other booksellers who might want to start using Edelweiss360?
Just to say that they should definitely try it. It’s easier and more beneficial that Mailchimp or Constant Contact.
Have you read anything recently that you are really excited about? Are there upcoming books that you are looking forward to?
We are big Sci-Fi/Fantasy fans. We have recently really enjoyed Legends & Lattes, the Murderbot Diaries, and Project Hail Mary. I am very excited for Martha Wells forthcoming book The Witch King and Alix Harrow’s Starling House.