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Dollagoot Dream Department Store in the
Taiwanese Publishing Market

 

2022.05.02

 

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Taiwanese cover of Dollagoot Dream Department Store

 

 

The motive for publishing a Korean book

 

Solo Press (寂寞出版社行), which published Dollagoot Dream Department Store (Sam & Parkers) in Taiwan, was established in 2008. We have been introducing fresh and new works covering unique subjects from around the world in the vast ocean of literature for Taiwanese readers. Also, we have published global bestsellers such as The Millennium Series, The Girl on the Train, and S.. This was not the first time that the Eurasian Press Publishing Group, a mother company of Solo Press, introduced Korean fiction to Taiwanese readers. Before Dollagoot Dream Department Store, it has translated and published Please Look After Mom (Changbi) by Shin Kyung-Sook in Taiwan as well.
When we first came across Dollagoot Dream Department Store, we got interested in the episodes and the author’s background. This book takes the eyes of “Penny,” a new worker at Dollagoot Dream Department Store, which only asleep people can visit, and features episodes about the relationship between dreams and people through warm sentences. Also, even though writer Lee Mi-Ye has newly debuted, she recorded a target achievement rate of 1,812% through crowdfunding, enabling her to publish the book successfully. Writer Lee Mi-Ye quit working for a large company to focus on writing, and became a rising star in the literary world drawing much attention. The book also received high expectations as it had been discussed in Korean culture communities1) in Taiwan even before it was officially published.

 

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A website screenshot of one of the Korean culture communities in Taiwan

 

 

Three months before the publication of Dollagoot Dream Department Store, Solo Press uploaded posts introducing the work to Taiwanese readers. Also, we planned marketing strategies targeting the entire course of preparation to official publication, such as book design package, bookstore distribution partnership, readers’ review, and interview requests. In addition, we directly interacted with readers through the official community platform of the publisher on Facebook and Instagram. Thanks to these efforts, Dollagoot Dream Department Store received focused attention in Taiwan, which later ranked 1st on the list of translated bestsellers of each major bookstore. Furthermore, it was listed among the yearly bestsellers as well. Recording 25 prints in only 6 months of publication selling 300 thousand copies, this was literally the “best-selling” book in recent years.

 

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When Dollagoot Dream Department Store ranked 1st on the comprehensive bestsllers’ list.

 

 

Promotion Strategy 1: Books Design and Editing

 

To express the fantasy mood of the book and the dreamy department store, we specially requested Dyin Li, a famous designer in Taiwan who won the Red Dot Design Award. Many readers shared their impressions regarding the cover design with various details, such as, "I chose this book because I was drawn to the wonderful cover design" and "I read the book while imagining the cover." The Korean publisher also greatly complemented the unique cover.

 

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Book designer’s design

 

 

The book's editor once even wrote a feature article about an interesting episode related to the book, such as Lee Mi-Ye’s story and how the publisher pursues to design books. This article was added to the cover as a QR code2). There’s this phrase in the article that goes, “Are we really losing confidence in novels? Or, are readers lost because they couldn’t find a novel they want to read?” Many novel lovers agreed with this phrase.

 

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Feature article (left) and the QR code on the cover (right)

 

 

Promotion Strategy 2: Partnership with online, offline bookstores, and e-book platforms in Taiwan

 

After the official publication, Solo Press exposed the book through various channels and built its awareness in the market.

 

1. The biggest sales channel in the Taiwanese book market: Books.com.tw (博客來)

 

We invited Taiwanese singer Ball to the “7th Edition: Sidok (試讀; like a preview for books, where a publisher gives a dummy book to a number of readers and receives feedback or advice on promotion after a certain period, and gather around together to discuss the book),”3) a collaborative literary fiction event. In only 2 weeks, the book gathered 30 reviews4) and 20 thousand views, which was the biggest number of views reached in the series.

 

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Sidok (July edition)

 

 

2. Eslite Bookstore, the Assembly Area for Art and Humanities as a large offline franchise bookstore in Taiwan

 

The book Dollagoot Dream Department Store was published in Taiwan in August 2021. It was around the time when the COVID-19 situation was easing. Therefore, we signed a partnership with Eslite Bookstore and displayed promotional materials and the book for people who go out more frequently. Backed by the cooperation with Eslite Bookstore and promotions, the book received much love from people, ranking 1st for 7 weeks and becoming a bestseller for 32 consecutive weeks.

 

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Dollagoot Dream Department Store displayed in Eslite Bookstore

 

 

3. Readmoo, the biggest e-book platform in Taiwan

 

This book simultaneously recorded three best-sellers in Korea's paper book, e-book, and audio book categories. In Taiwan, the book was invited to a special author’s interview5) hosted by Readmoo, the biggest e-book platform in Taiwan, and had time to share creative and imaginative stories about the book.

 

Promotion Strategy 3: Exposure to news and TV media

 

Around that time, the sequel of Dollagoot Dream Department Store was published in Korea, and the rising popularity of the book in Korea could be felt in Taiwan as well through the cover of the central news outlet6). And the book could get closer to Taiwanese readers as we shared the author’s ideas and image of Taiwan. Also, Hsieh Che-ching (謝哲青), a writer and MC who got famous through the Taiwanese TV program “Youth Loves Reading,” and psychologist Lee Wai Hong (李偉康) carried out debates7) on the “dreamy world” with high school students, expanding the readership.

 

Promotion Strategy 4: Going viral in communities

 

Apart from readers who like reading literature, more Taiwanese began to take an interest in Korean pop culture. So, using this trend as a strategy, we plan to make a list of idol singers in Korea who recommended reading Dollagoot Dream Department Store, and cooperate with news communities on the Korean Wave, to expand the readership.

 

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Translation review of Korean books on Social Media

 

 

Lastly, Solo Press has been providing real-time information on the latest sales performance and publishing through the official community on Facebook and Instagram. We successfully drew attention from people through the event “What dream do you want to have?,” ranking 1st in readers’ book reviews. There are more than 450 posts with hashtags about Dollagoot Dream Department Store (#歡迎光臨夢境百貨) on Instagram, and the number is increasing even at this moment.

 

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Advertisement on Social Media

 

 

Dollagoot Dream Department Store 2 is scheduled to be published in Taiwan in April 2022. As we created an Instagram account only for the series (@dreamstore.tw), we are looking forward to having closer and more effective communication with readers.

 

 

〈Reference〉

1)
Dark Horse Writer! Novelist who quit Samsung Electronics succeeded with her first book selling 300,000 copies
https://www.koreastardaily.com/tc/news/133286
A famous drama producer in Korea publishes the Chinese edition of Dollagoot Dream Department Store, the novel of the year set to be made into a drama
https://www.koreastardaily.com/tc/news/136903
2)
Shall I dream a little tonight? The dream I had after leaving Samsung Electronics – Dollagoot Dream Department Store
https://www.booklife.com.tw/baike-detail/5/1609
3)
Books.com - (博客來) Sidok (July edition)
https://activity.books.com.tw/crosscat/show/A00000025704
4)
5)
“This dream is still very vivid.”- Feature article on writer Lee Mi-Ye of Dollagoot Dream Department Store
https://news.readmoo.com/2021/08/25/selling-dreams/
6)
JoongAng Publishing House - Author's Special, Consolation for Korean Readers in the Corona Crisis from Samsung [Special]
https://www.cna.com.tw/news/firstnews/202108140043.aspx
7)
Public TV program “Youth Loves Reading” 20211226 – What is the essence of dreams? Is a dream just a fantasy created by our subconsciousness? “Dollagoot Dream Department Store: The Dream You Ordered is Sold Out
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WnlZCwDrzHM

 

 


Written by ChengHsiaoWei (鄭曉薇) (Solo Press (寂寞出版社))

 

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ChengHsiaoWei (鄭曉薇) (Solo Press (寂寞出版社))

#Dollagoot Dream Department Store#Taiwanese#Solo Press#Taiwan#Lee Mi-Ye
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