You all know this, right?!?
Actually, I think most consumers do not know that publishers pay to have their books placed on tables, end caps and displays. I know this because I worked in cereal and in the supermarket you pay to play. Publishing is not so different.
"If you took everything out of a supermarket that was bought and paid for promotions, it would look like Soviet Russia," says Lorraine Shanley, a principal of Market Partners International, a consulting firm. "Books have a kind of halo effect because they are advertisement-free, but they are not promotions-free."Barnes & Noble monetizes only a scant 3% to 5% of a store's total space, far less than supermarkets. The miles and miles of shelves crammed with books with only their spines showing don't cost publishers anything. But because Barnes & Noble, Amazon and Borders control distribution, they have immense clout, deciding which titles stick out when customers browse their stores and Web sites. They are empowered by a scarcity of space: There are so many books but only so much square footage available in stores.
Read the full article here: Bookstore Baksheesh: The Real Estate Deals That Sell Books | The Penenberg Post | Fast Company
So the next time you find yourself wandering into a Barnes & Noble and stop at a table to thumb through a book that catches your eye, remember that a publisher paid to put it there, hoping you would do just that. It's not that you've been punk'd. You've just been marketed to.