My girflriend just became a "Read 180" teacher. I am totally struck by how much energy is devoted by the publisher (scholastic) put into developing the program that demands their books. I was talking to someone about this, saying "it is amazing the lengths they go to to create the demand for their books." My friend said "Well I think the demand was already there, they just filled it with a good product, right?."
In a way she was right, there was already a need for books to help kids read better. But that demand is general. Plenty of books could satisfy that general demand. What Scholastic did was invent an entire program that solves an educational problem and demands that schools buy their specific books.
I'm sure that this has been going on for decades, but somehow, with the eyes of a trade publisher, it never really dawned on me before. I'm determined to find a way to apply this sort of real marketing to a trade book some day. It has to be possible, right?