TARGET has tripled their store count for Betty K. Bynum's Los Angeles-based independent book publishing company Dreamtitle Publishing in a show of support for her sales by upping their store count from 218 stores to 751 stores. Target's ongoing shelf presence of I'M A PRETTY LITTLE BLACK GIRL!, the five-stars rated classic picture book title with a glowing review by Publishers Weekly and a back-cover quote of endorsement by comedian Chris Rock reflects their motto, "Celebrate Diversity". The title has shown strong sell-out numbers for Target and other retailers including Amazon. Other major retailers have followed Target's lead in continuing strong reorders of stock to fill the demand of customers for this title.
Now in it's fifth year anniversary on TARGET stores shelves, I'm A Pretty Little Black Girl! is setting the pace for a greater demand for Dreamtitle's specialty yet affordable book list. "I really felt back then, in 2013, like I was David in the arena with a bunch of publishing Goliaths. But that indie versus majors platform has rapidly changed with how books are now sold and distributed."
An aggressive and broad social media footprint by Dreamtitle and its' website www.DreamIam.com ramps up sales for the re-release of their boys book, I'M A BRILLIANT LITTLE BLACK BOY! (PaperUp Publishing) co-authored with University of California at Santa Barbara film major and actor, Joshua B. Drummond. Well-reviewed by Kirkus Reviews and a five-star rated book on Amazon, this title bears a bouquet of celebrity back-cover quotes of support from major stars Denzel Washington and Samuel L. Jackson. Jackson leads the video star-studded book campaign, #Bbrilliant with Vin Diesel, Omari Hardwick and several notable Black male celebrities. Both titles can be purchased at Target.com.
Ongoing customer demands for this book title proves that African American parents and children will purchase beautifully rendered children's books that celebrate African American/Black culture with love and honor by showing children in a modern, identifiable everyday manner that will create delight and more inspiration to read.
Target was the first retailer onboard with Dreamtitle Publishing. "Five years ago, Target invited me to their corporate offices in Minneapolis like...six times for six different meetings about my book series which was still in development. Target had the vision for the future of children's books. And to me, that future needed to represent very young children of color with books that were beyond books about struggle and slavery. Children will get that in their school curriculum, anyway, right? The Target team is a vibrant, visionary group that opened the door for me as an independent publisher and new business. Target not only changed the game, Target changed my life as a passionate Black woman with a small business and big ideas", says Bynum.
In addition to the 751 Target stores carrying her books, Betty has a lot more of her company's developments in the works. "Animation is the next frontier for my titles. And we now have that in the works with a major Hollywood production company. I can't say any details just yet, but this is all very exciting. And it's very hard work, let me tell you!"
Even with her sellout titles her biggest struggle like any small business is funding for growth, as the demand keeps her distributor calling for more inventory, says Bynum. "As soon as I place an order, in a matter of weeks, the books have sold out of the warehouse. And I'm like, wait.. people are loving this book that much, still?! Then I thought, maybe I need to offer a few more goodies. We are introducing coloring books this fall but just on a limited release to try it -- because I am getting emails and requests from all over for them. And besides our books, tee shirts, pillow shams and dolls, we are trying to grow our brand."
When asked about why books for children of color don't expand with brand items, Betty replied, "The demand is there. In the same way that Disney monetizes their children's animated films with store items, but those animated films don't represent our Black boys, actually. Girls always go for the "princess" thing. I am a member of the Writers Guild, West, so having sold a film script to a major studio and also writing television pilots mean the next natural thing for me is to take my book titles to the screen, whether animation or live action. I have a broader idea, but getting the funding to make it all happen is always the challenge. The books are the anchor of the business. It's actually stunning and such a blessing to see my title sell out constantly. Our children are happy seeing themselves so gloriously represented in these books. We continue with a showing of very strong sales. So, the rest will happen."
I'M A LOVELY LITTLE LATINA! (with a glossary for learning Spanish words) is a third title now available that is written in Spanish and English can be purchased on DreamIam.com or Amazon. This title will be set for a re-release with celebrity endorsements in 2019.
Find out more about Dreamtitle Publishing books and products at www.DreamIam.com.