First Advisor

Rachel Noorda

Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) in Business Administration: Marketing and University Honors


Business Administration




Small presses -- Oregon -- Portland -- Marketing -- Case studies, Publishers and publishing -- Oregon -- Portland -- Case studies, Entrepreneurship, Small business marketing




This thesis seeks to understand the influence of a publisher’s individual experience and background on the marketing functions of a small publishing press. In order to complete this task, the biographical approach was used. This approach requires interviews of small business owners in order to gain an understanding of their motivation, history, and background. Three Portland publishers of similar size but varying genre focuses were interviewed. The interviews were analyzed and treated as individual case studies. The results of the interviews and analysis was an understanding that the impact on a press from the owners’ knowledge, personalities, and backgrounds change the structure of the individual press so wholly that from one publisher to another nearly an entirely new service is being provided despite the same product being produced--books. The thesis describes the importance of the qualitative knowledge and expertise of small business owners, specifically small publishers in the Portland publishing market. Using the biographical approach revealed that some of the key components of marketing within a small press are the relationships within the publishing community, the impact of distribution, and the overall desire to make a quality book for readers and create a quality experience for the author.


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An undergraduate honors thesis submitted in partial fulfillment of the requirements for the degree of Bachelor of Arts in University Honors and English and Marketing.

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