Describing themselves as “scrappy and nimble,” Space Goat Productions is a small comics publishers who’ve been around for a bit without getting that much attention. Publisher Shon Bury is definitel in it for the long haul however, and they’ve got a few good licenses – Evil Dead 2, The Howling – and creators – notably Ted Nafeh – and a varied line up of comcis and board games. They just announced a retailer advisory board deal, and from what they’ve told me they aim to get a little more attention. It’s certainly the kind of smart, industry centric move that helps a smaller publisher move up the ladder. Details below:
Space Goat Productions, publishers of Evil Dead 2 and The Howling comic books, Backpack Editions graphic novels, and tabletop games based on hit pop culture properties like The Terminator, announced the formation of a new retail advisory group. Dubbed “The Goat Herd,” the group consists of 15 direct market retailers from around North America who have agreed to lend their perspectives and very much solicited advice to Space Goat as the publisher prepares for the next phase of its growth.
“We’re certainly not the first publisher to reach out to comic book retailers for input,” said Shon Bury, Publisher at Space Goat, “and we certainly won’t be the last. But we are committed to acting on what we learn from our conversations with the folks on the frontline of the daily effort to deliver great content to readers. Anything we can do to better serve the interests of their businesses and the passions of their customers, we’re prepared to do.”
“From the outset, we determined to keep the group small in its inaugural year,” said JD Boucher, Marketing Director at Space Goat. “We sent out invitations shortly after ComicsPRO, seeking to limit membership to 15 stores that were sincere in their willingness to work with us. Our goal here has been to go deep rather than wide.”
“We’re always interested in helping smaller publishers succeed,” said Chris Brady, owner of 4-Color Fantasies in Rancho Cucamonga, California. “There’s less of a safety net for them, so if we can help them pick their shots, we’re more than happy to do so.”
In exchange for such engagement, Space Goat has arranged for “members of the herd” to enjoy access to works in progress across the entire SGP publishing portfolio, deep discounts and free shipping for all direct orders that meet a modest minimum, participation in group exclusive variant programs, in-book ad pages promoting member stores, customized digital marketing materials, and free mini comic previews of every new #1 shipped at no charge.
“Lots of publishers ask for our advice and opinions, but only a few actually seem to listen,” added Wayne Winsett, owner of Time Warp Comics in Boulder, Colorado. “Space Goat appears to be among the latter.”
“We do what we can,” added Bury. “While we’re known to be scrappy, nimble and sometimes a little stubborn – we also know that there’s a lot we can do better. And we will.”
Heidi MacDonald is the founder and editor in chief of The Beat. In the past, she worked for Disney, DC Comics, Fox and Publishers Weekly. She can be heard regularly on the More To Come Podcast. She likes coffee, cats and noble struggle.