Former Perseus ceo Jack McKeown and Verso Advertising president Denise Berthiaume will start a 2,000-square-foot bookstore, Books & Books Westhampton Beach, scheduled for a July 4-opening. In an unusual initiative, store owners McKeown and Berthiaume have created a marketing and branding affiliation with Mitch Kaplan’s renowned group of four Books & Books bookstores.
They’ll use the layout and design of Kaplan’s stores on Lincoln Road in Miami Beach and in the Bal Harbour Shops mall. As an “event-intensive” venture the Westhampton store will work with Books & Books’ Florida staff to schedule author events, and they expect to share web, social network and e-mail resources–where Berthiaume’s advertising and marketing experience will come to bear. They’re even working on a staff “exchange program” to share employees during each others’ respective “high season” period. Kaplan will serve as “a consultant and all around guru” for the new store.
Berthiaume notes in the announcement, “everything will be headlined Books & Books, because that is a name that resonates within the publishing world to such a large degree. We will be working together to extend that recognition further into the Internet as well, by using the resources of our Verso Digital online network to reach consumers directly.” To that end, the Verso Digital network “will serve the entire Books & Books Group in driving foot traffic through uniquely targeted ad campaigns, including geo-targeting within local communities.
In other store news, Arlington, VA children’s store Aladdin’s Lamp will close at the end of June after 20 years in business.