With Fantagraphics going exclusive with Diamond to the Direct Market, I wonder how long other Small Press Publishers will hold out going exclusive as well.
Will there be a time where a small press publisher pretty much has to go exclusive with Diamond in order to sell to the Direct Market? Or will being in Previews as well as using other distributors/self distributing always be a viable way to reach the DM?
It probably has to do with how much effort they put into it. I know that I have sold books in store that were made by guys down the street. And I am a lot more likely to buy a book from a guy I have talked to and is cool, then someone I haven't. That's why we are always buddy buddy with Bob Wayne and Dan Buckley, otherwise that statement would make me a liar!
Plus, even the folks that are exclusive with Diamond, if you can't get it done through Diamond, call the publisher... it works miracles.
Sure direct contact with a retailer is always good to make a sale. But is that really going to help if you want to reach all across the nation?
For a small press publisher, it comes down to time and money. You can try to contact all 3000ish direct market shops through promotional packages, samples and etc. But not all shops are open to buying all types of comics and would be wasting money by sending samples to some shops. So they tend to focus on the "indie friendly" shops which by most counts are a few hundred or so.
Going exclusive with Diamond gives a small press publisher a little more pull with some retailers since they get a slightly better discount (well except for reorders) and can stand out more in Previews. But will more shops other the few hundred start buying the publisher's product just because of the better discount and more prominence in Previews?