”One of the most important promotional objectives for 2024 is driving foot traffic into your stores,” Marvel Comics President Dan Buckley told retailers at the ComicsPRO 2024 Comic Industry Conference, and he backed that up with a number of initiatives, including the Marvel Must-Haves program, consistent pricing with the base cover price set at $3.99, and access to low-cost Spidey and His Amazing Friends comics to attract young readers.

On price, Buckley said, “The bulk of the line will be $3.99,” which drew applause from the audience, although he qualified it by saying “number ones and top titles with top talent and top characters will be priced at $4.99.”  Event books, one-shots, and anniversary issues will also be exceptions to the $3.99 price point but will have more consistent pricing.

The Marvel Must-Haves are free comics that collect issues that focus on currently popular characters; they will lead in to trades or tie in with upcoming Marvel Studios productions.  The first issue, available on March 6, will include Spider-Man/Deadpool #1, Immortal Thor #2, and Ms. Marvel: The New Mutant #1. Buckley also announced that the “Red Band Edition” of Blood Hunt comics will not be available digitally (see “‘Red Band Edition’ of ‘Blood Hunt’ Will Be Print-Only”).  “The basic concept is you cannot get it if you are not there to buy it,” he said.  "[Marvel Comics VP of Print & Digital Publishing] David Gabriel and team will also be developing sales programs with PRH that will allow you to have access to specific products without placing further financial burden on you.”

“My optimism has been burnished by the recent explosion of sales in manga and original graphic novels for early, middle-grade, and young adult readers,” Buckley said.  “And while these products are not predominantly sold in your shops, this is a booming new audience of young readers of graphic fiction.”  In order to help draw them in to comic shops, Marvel will offer retailers low-cost access to Spidey and His Amazing Friends comics beginning in July or August.  The audience applauded this announcement as well.

In addition, Buckley said, Marvel will coordinate with Marvel Studios to promote comics related to major events in order to bring MCU fans into comic shops.

Buckely also made a reference to reviving Bullpen Bulletin.  "We at Marvel need to embrace and convey the fun of working with super talented creators and beloved characters," Buckley said.  "We need to convey the fun that Stan and so many other creators and others in this industry since have projected because it is infectious."  He cited Ryan Reynolds' Deadpool & Wolverine World War III Tweet, the recently announced Uncle Scrooge comic (see "Jason Aaron to Pen Marvel's 'Uncle Scrooge'"), and "the reappearance of Bullpen Bulletin" as examples of that.