With the advance of the Internet and the ever-increasing popularity of digital content and Social Networking, the old publishing model is dying and a new model is needed.
Lightwave is changing with the times and will be rolling out our new publishing plan in 2010. For churches, bloggers, ministries, and authors dedicated to ministering to families and children, this will be great news.
Lightwave’s new publishing model properly rewards authors like never before and also values and properly rewards those who partner with us ministering to the Body in churches and online. For more info about our partnership programs with churches, affiliates and authors, please click through the appropriate link below.
For decades, Christian Publishing and large para-church ministries and organizations have largely worked around the church; ministering directly to Christians via radio, television, bookstores, and the Internet. Many of these well-meaning Christian organizations would say that they exist to ‘supplement’ the local church.
The problem with this approach is that it doesn’t acknowledge God’s model; God set up his church and decided that the local church would be the means whereby his church would grow, and where disciples would be discipled. Para-church organizations that operate according to God’s model should be striving to work alongside and through the local church, supporting them and aiding them in their task.
When the statistical alarm was sounded that the Body of Christ was losing its children to the world, many ran to examine the problem. When it was discovered that the problem was that, contrary to the biblical model, parents were relying on the church for their children’s spiritual upbringing (an impossibility), the publishers and para-church ministries came to the rescue.
They were well-meaning and sincere, but failed to make a dent in the problem. Why? Because again they attempted to work around the local church. The Bible teaches that the ministry—which operates in and through the local church—is to prepare the Body for works of service. (Ephesians 4:12) Since the Bible also teaches that the discipleship of children is the ministry of (‘a work of service’) parents (Ephesians 6:4), then Biblically it’s the church’s job to prepare parents for that work of service.
So in a nutshell, it’s God’s plan for parents to disciple their children. It’s the local church’s task to prepare and equip the parents for doing the job, and any outside organization that is called to help, should be working with and equipping the churches.
It’s Lightwave’s commitment to come alongside the local church and help you equip your parents and minister to your families more effectively.
It’s pretty obvious why God’s way of doing it works. The army of family, children’s ministers, and workers are already in place with the relational connections to each family and to each community. The army doesn’t need to be replaced by bookstores and radio shows. They need to be equipped and aided in their God-given task.
So Lightwave will value your calling, your place and your connections, help you, and equip you to do your task. Here’s how we plan on doing that:
- We’ve Got Your Back – In everything we publish and do, we will build you up, support your church, and your key role in the task of training parents to disciple their children, and we will encourage others to do the same.
- Helping You Partner With Your Parents – We have realized—from years of test and trial—that when what you do in Sunday School is collated with what your parents do at home, an effective partnership is created and your results are multiplied. We are setting up a program for you called ‘Partnering With Parents.’ You’re the ones partnering with the parents—we’re partnering with you. All of the family products we develop and publish will have an in-church and at-home element so that each resource helps you connect home and church and multiplies your efforts.
- Our Gift To You – When you partner with us, we support you and any of our in-church resources (small group parenting materials, children’s music, Sunday School materials, etc.) that you need, are our gift to you. Too many churches don’t have the budgets and resources they need to finance ministries to parents, children and families. So we have a plan that will help you do it without costing you a thing.
- We’ll Help Top-up Your Ministry Budget – When you partner with us, we not only supply you with our in-church materials as our gift to you, but we have also designed a Church Affiliate Program through which we’ll pay you money every time a person from your congregation buys any of our at-home materials. This money can then be used to subsidize your family and children’s ministry efforts.
- We Protect Your Church – Many online bookstores with affiliate programs either pay a one-time commission on a sale or set a a temporary time period for payable commissions. The problem with this is that most customers, after the initial purchase, will eventually bypass the affiliate member and go directly to the online bookstore when purchasing anything further. The result is that the affiliate member loses his/her commission on any future sales from his/her own customer. How are we different? If a member of your congregation clicks through from your website that person is registered with us for as long as we can track him/her. Even if he/she comes to us directly for future products, your church will always receive the commission as long as we are partnering together. We believe that we should protect you and your congregation. We will never sell or give away your church members’ information to anyone.
- A Parenting Website For You – We all know that it’s impossible to disciple a child in two hours a week; it’s a 24/7 task. Supporting parents at home seven days a week is something that most churches simply do not have enough resources for. Lightwave has designed a website to help you help your parents everyday in the home. ChristianParentingDaily.com is designed to be an extension of your church’s ministry to your families. When members of your church sign up to receive daily help and encouragements through the website, they are welcomed as members of your church.
- A Revolutionary New Sunday School Program – We are currently developing the first ever, graded Sunday School Program that puts your church and its families in a true biblical partnership. The program integrates in-church and in-home elements and resources that effectively and progressively disciple children. This program is a huge undertaking and has been many years in the making. When it’s ready, it will be available online for you, our church partners, as our gift. We tested the first two years of the program in local churches and here is what pastors of the test churches had to say about the program:
“Our teachers and parents and even our children have nothing but praise for the material. It is wonderful to see the parents leading the way in teaching their children and having it reinforced and supported in the children’s church lessons.
Although not initially thought of as a growth tool, to date we have distributed materials to double the number of children who were initially involved.”
—Todd Martin, Pastor
Harvest Christian Fellowship
“‘Partnering with Parents’ is a breath of fresh air for our Kid’s Ministry. Coming alongside of parents to encourage and equip them to train their children places the ministry where it belongs: with them! PWP equips us to help parents, and at the same time to provide teaching to their children in an intentional way.
I would highly recommend it to any and every church looking to effectively disciple their children and activate the parents in their God-given task.”
—Mike Schroeder, Pastor
Generations Christian Fellowship
If you’re interested in joining our Church Program, please click here and we’ll send you more details when we officially launch the Church Program.
Many churches have already asked to be notified when our Sunday School Program is ready. If you’re also interested and would like to be notified, please click here and we’ll send you more details when we officially launch the Sunday School program.
Many have predicted that as people get more and more comfortable with digital content and buying online, that the traditional bookstore will be a thing of the past.
Large online bookstores are positioning themselves to be the online answer. They’ve done a good job of providing books online and making books more available to many. The problem with this is that the reason why large publishers have always been in control of publishing is because they controlled the access to the customer through an extensive—and expensive to develop—relationship with bookstores and other booksellers. With the explosion of online sales and social networking, this is no longer the case. The customers are shopping online and no one has exclusive access to them.
Even though the playing field has changed, everyone involved seems to be willing to play by the old rules.
According to Wikipedia, Amazon has close to a million Associates (affiliate members) who send traffic to their site. Together, affiliate sales and sales through third-party sellers, account for 40% of purchases through Amazon.
The reality is that today, the ones who truly have access to the book buyers are the many bloggers and website owners who each have access to their own niche audience. These are the new bookstores. Unfortunately, whereas bookstores were given 40% of the purchase price for access to their customers, these new bookstores receive only around 4% as affiliates.
What if publishers decided to partner with this new online network of bookstores directly and reward them properly?
Lightwave is planning to do exactly that. We are building an Affiliate Network with churches, Christian bloggers, ministries, and Christian businesses that have websites. These sites do much good, speak to and minister to a vast audience, but unfortunately for them, they have not been well rewarded for recommending resources that they believe in.
In Lightwave’s new model, you our affiliates replace the bookstores—online and otherwise—and promote and sell our resources, and Lightwave rewards you with 20% of the purchase price. That’s half the 40% that brick & mortar bookstores make with none of the related overhead; no purchasing, no stocking, no bookstore employees, no rent to pay, no customer payments to handle etc. Therefore, your risk/reward ratio is far greater.
Another problem with many online bookstore’s affiliate programs is that when you send them a customer, you are literally sending the customer away. When that customer (yours) continues to buy from the online store, you get nothing unless they click through from your site again. The affiliate commission is more of a headhunter’s fee given to you for handing over your customers.
Again, Lightwave is working on a more rewarding program. When you become one of our Affiliates, as long as you continue to promote LPI’s product with blogs and links, we will protect your customers for as long as we can track them so that you get rewarded every time they buy from us.
Many owners of great Christian sites and blogs are losing hope in their endeavors, because most don’t make nearly enough to live on. Lightwave would like to help change that.
We must answer the question here that some will ask, “Aren’t you cutting out the Christian and/or Family Bookstore”? It’s true that we won’t be shipping product to them and expecting them to pay for it and stock it. However, if they have a website and want to join our Affiliate program and earn 20% for doing none of that, we welcome them. In this way Christian Bookstores could actually make some money.
If you would like to get started building your customer base and you have a Christian themed web presence (church, family, blog, ministry, etc.) please click here and we’ll put you on our list and send you an online application when we’re ready to move forward. (Note: as we begin our affiliate process, we will be limiting the number of affiliates we take on.)
For it is written in the Law of Moses: “Do not muzzle an ox while it is treading out the grain.” Is it about oxen that God is concerned? (1 Corinthians 9:9 NIV)
In order to completely turn the old publishing model on its head, Lightwave will reward Christian authors like they’ve rarely been rewarded before. Lightwave will pay 20% of retail to the authors instead of the usual 10–15% of wholesale (no hard-line negotiations necessary). Lightwave will not be selling through online or brick and mortar bookstores or any other third-party wholesaler or retailer. We will rely solely on our Church and Affiliate partners. (Read ‘Lightwave’s Affiliate Program’.) So there is money in the equation to finally properly reward authors.
Also, it’s Lightwave’s plan to help authors get online and help them promote their own work through Social Networking and their own websites. Traditional publishers don’t reward their authors for doing this. Lightwave authors will also be Lightwave Affiliates. When they cause a consumer to buy one of their own books, they’ll be rewarded by an additional 20% of the retail. Under the old model, authors needed to purchase and ship their own books and sell them at their speaking engagements to make this kind of money (40%); now they can do it without leaving home or ever handling a book or a payment.
Under the Lightwave system, authors won’t have to go through the process of setting up time-consuming Blog Tours because our online Affiliate network will be ready to promote their book as soon as it’s released. Bloggers and website owners are accustomed to getting a few free copies of a book and a very small affiliate commission from online bookstores. Under this new model both authors and our Affiliates will be rewarded properly for their efforts.
Another beautiful thing for Lightwave authors is that they can all promote each other’s books and receive the 20% Affiliate commission for doing it. Having the authors work as a block to promote each other will move all of Lightwave’s author ministries forward.
It’s Lightwave’s goal to do everything it can to help its authors make a living at what they are called to do, something most authors were unable to do under the old publishing model.
Lightwave is currently not taking any unsolicited manuscripts. If you are a Christian author with previously-published books for church and family, and you’d like to be notified when we are looking for submissions then please have your agent contact us here.
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