Sometimes getting in front of your buyer may be the best way to make a sale, and it’s easier than ever to do it this time of year. Below, I’ve compiled a list of creative ideas to get your book in front of buyers:
Craft & Holiday Fairs: Between Harvest Festivals and Holiday Festivals, regional calendars listing craft and gift fairs really do fill up this time of year. Many of these places don’t book up the way they used to, so if you’re just now considering this, it could be a great time to check on pricing of these events. Check your local calendar to see what’s happening in your area and what you can piggy-back on. And maybe there’s another local author already booked that you aren’t in competition with that may want to split the cost.
Airports: Last year as I had family coming into the San Diego airport, I noticed several book signings going on in baggage claim. It’s really quite smart. You land at your destination and realize you forgot to get a gift for someone, what’s better gift than a signed book, right? The author even had a fun sign that read: Did you forget a gift for someone special? Autographed books make great presents! And he even had inexpensive gift bags in case the person needed one, too. Not all airports do this, so contact your local airport and see what their rules are regarding this. There may be a small fee associated with it, and in some cases (if you do a book signing inside the airport i.e. by the departure gates) they may tell you that they only do events with authors carried in the airport book stores, but you won’t know unless you ask!
Events in specialty stores: When I was first in business it was nearly impossible to get authors into Barnes & Noble, let alone get them invited to do a book signing. Sadly, not much has changed in that regard. At that time I had several authors that I was working with who needed events, so I decided to venture out and try something new. I planned events in specialty stores, coffee shops (yes, even Starbucks), wine bars, and Hallmark. Hallmark in particular is a fantastic store, because folks shopping there are often looking for a gift (and often last minute). I once did a signing at a Hallmark for my own book, and sold out within an hour. You may have to work out a consignment deal with them, meaning they don’t buy books from your publisher, but simply pay you for what’s sold. If you can pull it off, it’s well worth the effort to do so. The thing about specialty stores is that you often have no competition with other authors – unlike in a bookstore. The only challenge to organizing these types of events is to help the store understand how it will benefit them. Remind them that you’ll be doing some promotion around this to your local area, too. If you frequent somewhere where the staff knows you – you have an even stronger chance of getting them to hear you out! Not sure where to start? Check your local events calendar, see who does events for any other reason, open mic nights, readings, pub quiz night, these places are used to booking events so you won’t be re-inventing the wheel.
Holiday Gift Guides: If in-person events aren’t your thing (and even if they are), why not submit to some bloggers looking to fill their holiday gift guides? This time of year many bloggers are looking for recommendations for their readers, and we have posted a few of them below to get you started. If you want to find even more bloggers do a search for “Holiday gift guide 2015” and see what pops up!
If you books fits any of these, submit away!
Read part 2: Get More Reviews
Read part 1: eBook Promo Scheduling