When the decision makers at Diamond Comics Distributors – the power player who exclusively distributes nearly every major comic book publisher in the direct market of retailer shops – announced at a recent retailer summit that they were considering moving the comics on-sale date to Tuesday along with other changes, it was not done without a lot of talk. As CBR reported during C2E2, the idea of Tuesday comic sales – and perhaps Monday shipping to match it – came about thanks to a lot of talk amongst Diamond and their retail partners, and today that conversation moved to the next level.
CBR News has learned that Diamond this week sent a survey to their retail partners both to solicit their opinions on the move and inform them of the potential benefits of a Tuesday street date. “At the Diamond Summit in March, during our annual Dialogue With Diamond presentation, we discussed the idea of direct market retailers receiving their new product shipments a day earlier to help with the processing of their orders, and we discussed some of the pros and cons of moving New Release Day to Tuesdays," Diamond’s VP-Sales & Marketing Roger Fletcher said via e-mail. “While that served as a good starting point, we wanted to continue the dialogue by giving all of our retailers a chance to provide feedback”.
The survey, which is due back to the distributor by June 11, includes questions about the general idea behind the proposals – "Do you think the Direct Market would benefit from receiving products a day early?" – and ones focusing on the specific changes such programs could invoke – "If given the choice between Monday delivery for Tuesday on sale and Tuesday delivery for Wednesday on sale, what would be your preference?"
In addition, a two-page FAQ surrounding some of the specific issues including shipping during holiday weeks (as now, on sale dates would move one day forward to Wednesday) and sales times (stores would not be allowed to start selling new product Tuesday at 12:01 AM, for example).
Diamond promised in their e-mail to release the results to their survey by the end of this month, so check back to CBR to learn more about the potential changes coming to your local comics shop!