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Friday, March 31, 2006

Zondervan Expands Purpose Driven Marketing Campaign

PdlThis just in from Publisher's Weekly:

Zondervan Expands Purpose-Driven Marketing Campaign to Distant Planets
By Jana Riess

Based on the runaway popularity of Rick Warren's bestseller The Purpose-Driven Life, which has sold more than 24 million copies just in the English language, Zondervan is turning its sights to the final frontier: space. Special editions of the book will release on Mars, Venus, and Mercury next year, the Michigan-based Christian publishing house reported this week, with more distant planets to follow later if initial sales efforts prove successful.

"Really, space is the great untapped market," said James T. Kirkstra, Zondervan's new manager for extraterrestrial sales. "We think that this book is the perfect product to help aliens understand the reason for their existence. And this market is completely fresh. I mean, Jupiter is simply huge, and no other Christian publishers have set up shop there yet. We are proud to be pioneers in this exciting venture."

As part of the promotional efforts, each planetary edition will have a slightly different subtitle that will mark it as unique for that particular world. For example, whereas the current edition bears the subtitle, "What on Earth Am I Here For?", future volumes will be "What on Mars Am I Here For?" and "What on Venus Am I Here For?" Other revisions and value-added content may also occur on a planet-by-planet basis, Kirkstra said.

This is not the first time that Zondervan has attempted an aggressive outreach into previously untapped markets. However, earlier efforts to get a copy of The Purpose-Driven Pet into the paws of every animal on Earth did not meet with unqualified success, since distribution proved to be a nightmare. "Let's face it, animals just weren't coming in from the wild to shop in CBA stores," said a company insider, who preferred to remain anonymous. "The best we could really hope for was that middle-aged women, our core consumers, were bringing the book home for their cats to read." Animal outreach efforts are on hiatus at the moment as the company pursues the intergalactic trade.

Kirkstra does not expect distribution to be such a barrier with the Martian publishing world, which will be the first to receive shipments of PDL. Zondervan has struck a deal with cash-strapped NASA, using capital from the lucrative Christian publishing business to fund further space exploration if NASA will subcontract for the routing and shipping of product. Financial details of the arrangement were not disclosed, but are rumored to be in the nine-figure range.

"The real challenge will be getting the books to the unchurched alien, since there won't be churches on these planets to do a '40 Days of Purpose' campaign," said Kirkstra. "But that is a small hiccup. Really, there's no reason for us not to reach for the stars."

[This is part of Publisher's Weekly's April Fools Day Coverage]

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March 31, 2006 in Humor | Permalink

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Let's not forget the PORPOISE driven life. I bet RW loves this one...


Posted by: Peter Hamm | Mar 31, 2006 10:15:50 AM

Reminds me of a story about 15(?) years ago where a seminary student was translating the New Testament into "Klingon" as a final project.
Personally, I stop with Jesus' admonition to go..."into all the world." He doesn't say to leave this earth.... I think it's just one more vain attempt of a megachurch movement to try and inflate their numbers for outreach brochures! Where will this end?

Posted by: Jeff | Mar 31, 2006 10:36:56 AM

I think it's over for this fad. On to the next one...


PS: I hope the next one isn't Joel Osteen's self-help books... or anything to do with TBN. It would be great if it had something to do with the "Way of the Master" ministry-- I've been watching some of their videos and have been enjoying them. It would be good for the church to get back to the real gospel for a change...

One thing the Way of the Master seems to leave out is info about how to live the spirit-filled life. That's also a message that desperately needs to get out...


PS: Have a Happy April 1 tomorrow-- fool someone...

Posted by: Bernie of FreeGoodNews.com | Mar 31, 2006 5:51:23 PM

Actually I have wanted to send all the additional copies of the Purpose Driven LIfe and Church that well-meaning folks have given me as a must read for every Christian leader, and the Russian program charges many thousands for every book I send into space with them. This program could turn out to be cheaper. Thanks for passing the news along.

Posted by: Mark Simpson | Apr 3, 2006 9:42:08 AM

"Zondervan Expands Purpose-Driven Marketing Campaign to Distant Planets"

Well, at least it's going back to where it really belongs.

Pssst. Hey, Rick...the inhabitants of the planet CreamPuff called and said they wanted their theology back.

Posted by: Ricky | Apr 3, 2006 10:56:51 AM

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