I am a big fan of subscription boxes as I love receiving a surprise new book and bookish goodies in the post each month. And one of my favourite subscription boxes is the Nerdy Bookworm Box, a monthly box focusing on YA fantasy and science fiction titles.
Each month when I opened up the box and the beautifully wrapped books I would wonder what it was like to put together one of these boxes, and what it is like to run a subscription box service. So I asked the lovely Jen, owner of the Nerdy Bookworm Box, who has written a guest post describing a typical day in the life of a subscription box owner:
First, Natalie, thank you for having me! A day in the life of running a subscription box is never the same, which is part of why I enjoy it so much. Each day brings new tasks and challenges, and there is pretty much always something that needs to be done. In fact, there’s usually a lot that needs to be done, and I wouldn’t have it any other way. 🙂
When I first get to my laptop for the day, the very first place I go is to my email inbox to check out the support emails and orders that have come in overnight, usually from the States since they’re in a different timezone. And then it’s straight over to social media where I get to interact with other book-lovers, which is one of the most fun parts of running the box. I love seeing everyone’s photos around unboxing time in particular. A lot of hard work goes into each box, but it’s so worth it to see everyone receiving the goodies and enjoying the books. I’m also a big fan of Instagram, and I love scrolling through the gorgeous photos in my feed.
After email and social media, I move onto curating items for upcoming boxes. I’m planning several months ahead now because I work with a lot of other small business who handcraft each item. I spend a lot of time on Etsy, browsing and searching the listings. I’ve found some incredible suppliers that way! When I find something that looks promising, I shoot off some emails to see if they’d be interested in working with the box, as well as check in with suppliers on items that are already in the works. Sometimes there are mock-ups of designs to take a look at or candle scents to review. If a sample has arrived for a potential collaboration, I’ll excitedly unbox that and take a look.
Several days a week, I’ll head over to the unit where all the packing takes place. That’s where all the books and items get delivered, so I’ll go over and take a look at whatever has come in that week. I absolutely love it when the big delivery from the publisher arrives each month! So many books to get ready to send to their new homes! While I’m there, I like to do a little prep even if it’s not packing time yet for the month. Sometimes that means wrapping some books or folding up some boxes. If a poster is included in the next box, then I’ll work on rolling those up and tying them with ribbon. I like to get as much done in advance as possible so that the actual packing and shipping goes as smoothly as possible.
When I head back home, which is where I do most of the daily admin, I’ll check in on emails and social media again. Sometimes I’ll take a few photos to queue up for Instagram, and I’ll work on an article or quiz for the magazine. I try to do a little on that each day, so that everything is all ready to go ahead of time. But the best part of the day is when I open up a book and sit down to read. 🙂 The books are the most important part of the box, and I love reading potential books for upcoming boxes. I really try to find books that have unique twists to the premise, and I of course love including books by fantastic writers. I always know when I’ve found the perfect book for the box—it’s one I’m absolutely incapable of putting down. October’s book was like that for me. I devoured it in a matter of hours! Sometimes I get asked if the theme or the book comes first. For me, it’s always the book, because that’s what the box is all about. Once I’ve chosen a book, then I brainstorm potential themes before searching for some great items to go along with it.
And that’s my day! Or at least an example of one. On packing days, I’m in the unit from dawn until dusk, and on renewal day and each month’s box launch day, I make sure to be at my laptop to answer emails as quickly as possible.
It’s been a lot of fun launching this box, and I’m so glad to see that readers are enjoying it. I can’t wait to see what the future brings!
Thank you so much to Jen for taking the time to tell us all about her day! To find out more about the Nerdy Bookworm Box, check out their website here!
Whats in the box? Check out the links below to see my unboxings of previous Nerdy Bookworm boxes:
June 2016 – Dark Magic
July 2016 – Book Boyfriends
August 2016 – Dystopian
September 2016 – Queens