• About Tom Dougherty

    Tom Dougherty CEO, Stealing Share

    Tom Dougherty is the President and CEO of Stealing Share, Inc., and has helped national and global brands such as Lexus, IKEA and Tide steal market share over his 25-year career.

    An often-quoted source on business and brands, he has been featured recently by the New York Times and CNN, discussing topics ranging from television to Apple to airlines.

    Tom also regularly speaks at conferences as a keynote and break-out speaker. To find out more on inviting him to your speaking engagement and view a video of him speaking, click here.

    You can also reach him via email attomd@stealingshare.com.

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No question, Barnes & Noble is in trouble

What is wrong with Barnes & Noble? If you ask investors, they would tell you the bookseller has lost its importance because the market B&N served has changed. The way it buys and uses books has changed. They would say that Barnes & Noble is a dinosaur.

IMG_1444Look at the recent earnings report and you would have to agree. The company reported a net loss of $87 million, or $1.56 per share, for the fiscal first quarter ending July 27. Compare that with a loss of $39.8 million, or 76 cents per share, a year earlier. If you were an options trader, last week was the time to sell Puts.

I think Barnes & Noble still has a whisper of a chance to both survive and prosper but the brand and the brand promise needs a complete overhaul. It needs to be less about what you buy (books) and more about why. When Barnes & Noble closes its doors, many of us will mourn the loss of the bookstore experience.

Sadly, we will only miss it when it is gone because Barnes & Noble ‘s brand has no such brand promise and elicits none of that fear. The brand currently is only that of “booksellers.”

Does the Barnes & Noble brand flood you with the distinct and expansive scent of books? Does it fill you with the wonder of discovery that is so pleasant on a rainy Saturday afternoon when, with no particular book in mind, you leisurely discover a gem you did not know you needed?

Barnes & Noble can’t compete on price or selection. The Internet will always have lower prices and a greater selection. But the experience is an emotional difference — not a rational one. Understanding that difference and executing it is how you grow market share. Know what you are good at and become legend.

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