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MBS Direct Expert Q&A: Bill Dampier on Benefits of Scale

Posted by Liz Schulte on Mar 5, 2018 5:30:00 AM
Topics: mbs direct, online bookstore, benefits of scale

Anyone can ship a book. MBS Direct, however, does far more than simply shipping books from one point to another. They provide customers with economy of scale, personalized service and 25 years of industry experience. We sat down with Bill Dampier, executive vice president MBS Textbook Exchange LLC to discuss the benefits MBS Direct provides to its customers.

MBS Direct Expert Q&A: Bill Dampier on Benefits of ScaleWhat sets MBS Direct apart from other companies who provide a similar service?

Our people and our technology. We have been in the industry the longest. Over the years, we have built a strong team dedicated to improving the client experience. We have people who work to bring the latest industry advancements to our customers as well as a devoted Client Services team who provides our partner schools with the great service and industry knowledge that developed through real-life experience.

How does MBS’ scale save students money?

MBS has one of the largest inventories available, and with a staff of over 1,100 employees at peak times of the year, we work tirelessly to provide the course materials our clients’ need.  Between wholesale and the partnership with Barnes & Noble College, we can provide the most cost-savings options for students. We have more used books available to our schools than the competition.  Utilizing used, rental and Marketplace options, partner schools can help their students keep costs down.

What are the main benefits to choosing a partnership with a large company like MBS Direct?

Through the Barnes & Noble acquisition, we now have access to more content experts and deliver through any format.  Whether it is our experience of delivering physical course materials with an accuracy of over 99.995%, to digital expertise through Barnes & Noble Education’s LoudCloud platform, we can offer partner schools a strong digital platform with a broad catalog of excellent digital course materials that have good content and price points. We maintain significant relationships with publishers. Our scale gives our customers confidence that we are a stable company who will be with them for the long haul.

How does MBS Direct’s Client Services team differentiate the company from the competition?

Their level of detail is unmatched. The Client Services team gives partner schools the personalized service they need to make sure the Online Bookstore experience is successful — ensuring students have their course materials on the first day of class. This close working relationship, provides schools an account manager who can help them with questions or facilitate requests and importantly, access to a content and industry expert. The Client Services team invests in our partner schools’ success.

What does MBS Direct offer that other companies don’t?

The breadth of expertise our people have. Anybody can ship a book, but MBS Direct has 25 years of experience that enables us to handle orders efficiently and to make sure our clients have what they need in time for classes to start.

How does having more used books benefit MBS Direct’s customers?

Having access to a large inventory of used books provides more value and savings for the school and the student.

What are the benefits of using a single provider for everything?

It simplifies the entire process. With one login, one website, a student can see their courses as well as the choice in formats: new, used, digital, rental or Marketplace. Multiple websites can be cumbersome or confusing for students to navigate. Will they get the right edition? Will they get the book in time for class to start? Through the Online Bookstore the process is simple, providing options, savings and the knowledge students will have the materials they need before the first day of class. There is never any confusion about where they need to go. Also, students have the option to use student financial aid to purchase their books.

What are MBS’ digital offerings like for our customers?

We continue to bring new digital products that go beyond traditional eBooks, like interactive content, Open Educational Resources and custom course packs. We are constantly expanding to meet the needs of our school. No matter what their goals are, MBS Direct strives to meet them.

How does the process from sales to implementation to Client Services support our customers?

We call our process the transfer of trust. The sales team makes the contact and forms great relationships with our schools, then implementation makes sure that the whole process is smooth for our new clients and done correctly to their expectations. They help to make sure that the relationship gets off on the right foot. Client Services then steps in and they are engaged and invested in our school’s success going forward. They go above and beyond to meet our clients’ needs. From the beginning, partner schools are valued and given personalized attention.

What types of products and services does MBS Direct offer customers?

MBS Direct expands our services to include what our clients request. We offer an inclusive access program which allows schools to go a step further in making sure students have the course materials they need by the first day of class. Through the Marketplace and the Online Bookstore, schools can easily serve students both on and off-campus while maintaining reduced pricing on an expansive inventory. Spirit wear and merchandise can be made available to students with no overhead through Promoversity. There are exciting digital offerings available from LoudCloud. And our continuously expanding catalog provides schools more options every year.

About Liz Schulte

Liz Schulte is an author and business owner with a background in customer service, marketing and higher education development.

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