Book Subscription Service Increases Sales Following Lockdown

Book Subscription Service Increases Sales Following Lockdown
  • Monthly book delivery complimented by digital book club offers a welcome distraction and meaningful network for women across the world.
  • Book club strives to combat loneliness, anxiety and the unease Coronavirus has brought.

Since its emergence onto the scene in 2017, Rare Birds Book Club has seen growth of 86% and 57% YoY respectively, however since lock down measures commenced, the subscription service and digital book club headquartered in Scotland has reported a staggering 52% growth over the course of the past four weeks

At the beginning of the year, the club was just about to hit 1,000 subscribers per month, an almost 50/50 split of those buying for themselves (51%) and those buying as gifts (49%) however, post lock down, the emphasis on sales has shifted firmly towards gift purchasing with hundreds of orders including messages of consolation, comfort and togetherness.

The pay-as-you go option has also taken off, with people looking to enjoy the service without having to commit longer-term; a bonus in these times of uncertainty and the business has also recorded a marked increase in international sales with 10% of all orders now being shipped internationally. In the short-term, mail outs are now being done from Wood’s spare room instead of her headquarters in Edinburgh city centre.

Simple, Personal Book Club Subscription

Rachel Wood, founder of Rare Birds Book Club comments:

“My spare room is basically now a small warehouse, but it means we’ve been able to stay fully operational during lockdown. Once books are picked, packed and ready to go, they are collected by Royal Mail in a seamless operation that is completely contactless. My staff and I are all isolated in our own homes and have different responsibilities to keep us ticking over – I do the big send outs and individual orders are done elsewhere.”

A simple, yet personal subscription, Rare Birds Book Club offers members the chance to pick between two surprise books each month (or upgrade to both) before joining like-minded subscribers in the digital book club to discuss this month’s read. Its ethos being rooted in a service that was both letter-box friendly and heavily digital has been key in driving the sales spike that has kept the business operational when so many others have temporarily or indefinitely closed-down.

Never one to rest on her laurels, Wood has also launched a podcast a few weeks ago, which sees her and two friends waxing lyrical about all things books.

“The first few episodes were pre-recorded and ready to go, so we were able to launch quickly. Now in lockdown we record remotely; each of us with the same microphone we’d use together. We host the discussion through a video chat on my computer so it’s all online, and it’s recorded by connecting the computer up with our soundboard to keep the quality high. Then we edit and release as normal.” 

With COVID-19 still keeping us in our homes and with reports of mental health issues on the rise, it seems reading and podcast listening will only increase to help combat loneliness, anxiety and the unease Coronavirus has brought. For Rare Birds Book Club that suggests 2020 is set to be a year of even bigger growth.

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