This article is from a guest poster and is about some of the easy little things we can do, and forget to do, besides just all the social media marketing that has become commonplace.
We are all learning the advantages of social media and the internet when it comes to reaching out and selling books. However, in dedicating so much time to the digital world, we have not grown to improve our business building skills between us and our face to face customers. As writers, many of us don’t like to step out be outgoing with strangers nor do we always like to toot our own horn. Marketing online only may work, but you create a personal following when you come out of your house and strut your stuff to the public around you.
- Bookmarks: Having a bookmark image designed and printed is a great way to connect with potential readers. Leaving a small stack of them in bookstores generates a want in people. Leaving them on the table after you eat out will make it possible to have your name land in someone else’s hands. Remember that it only takes one loud person to discover your book and you will have more readers than you know what to do with.
- Business Cards: While bookmarks can be expensive, you can create a business card that you can give out to people you run into. Hand them to your checker at the grocery store. Mail them with your bills (I know, we pay so many of them online). However, to just spend the 42 cents on a stamp for marketing, you are reaching those people you would never know. And if you are running a special, print a label you can stick on the back with a coupon code or dates of free downloads.
- Book Signings: While these can be very scary to some writers, they are a great time to come out as a celebrity. You can do them in bookstores or have them elsewhere like in a hotel conference room or the library. Even outdoor booth space type shows or events can constitute as a signing. Create a buzz about your event online and offer prizes for those who bring someone with them. This doubles your exposure. At the signing, hold a drawing for your newest release. The forms you collect from the drawing will give you the information you need to add them to your social media contacts. Part of getting people’s attention and making them interested enough to stop requires a very visual set up. A large poster, of your book’s cover, your other signing dates, and maybe your bio, on an easel in close proximity to your table will help you.
- Vinyl Letters on your Car: Having your book’s title and your web address cut out of weather resistant vinyl and spread across the back window of your car will show that you are most proud of your work. How many customers do you miss everyday sitting in traffic? This is a low-cost way to get your website in front of the average person. White is simple and shows up well while neon colors are attention grabbing. Never do black, it will blend into the interior of your vehicle.
Although the internet is the easy, risk free way to market to people far away from you, it is still important to make an image for yourself. Be that author who makes regular appearances for their fans and future readers. Their voices get pretty loud when they are excited about what you do for them…which is writing. Share the love.
Jessica Reynolds loves spending time with her family and living life through photography and art. She has spent considerable time running her own businesses while raising her kids. Currently, she blogs for Poster Session, a large format poster printer.