Readers’ Union phases out book clubs


Readers’ Union, a direct marketer of books, is phasing out its
book clubs. Some of the clubs will be relaunched in July as
online offerings supported by print catalogues. “We feel
this will be a much better way to continue to sell books in these
niche areas, as the book-club model had become uneconomical to
continue,” says Renee Webb, product and content manager at
RUBooks.co.uk, Readers’ Union’s recently launched website, which
sells books on photography, equestrian, painting, history, and
nostalgia. Other clubs, however, are being closed altogether.

A letter to customers explained that the number of members in
certain clubs had reduced “below the level that allows us
to continue to run [the] club profitably”. One of those
being wound down is the country-sports club, “but we are
actively looking to see if any third parties could take over this
list,” Webb says. As well as RUBooks, Readers’ Union has
launched RUCrafts.co.uk, specialising in craft items. Webb says
the company is receiving positive feedback on the two new
websites.

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