Trade Shows: A Book Promotion Tool

Often members and prospective members of Christian Small Publishers Association (CSPA) ask how attending the International Christian Retail Show (ICRS) might be helpful to them in promoting their books.

There are many ways that authors and publishers can benefit from attending ICRS. These include:

  • Introducing the Christian book trade to your book
  • Learning about the industry
  • Gaining education on how to become better at publishing and marketing books through seminars available at the show
  • Finding people and companies to partner with in furthering the distribution and promotion of your books
  • Access to publishers seeking foreign rights of Christian books
  • Obtaining media coverage for your books

However, you don’t have to just take my word for it. Watch this testimonial from Lori Hynson, a CSPA member and author of SuperGal vs. God, who attended ICRS 2014 last week. Listen to what she was able to accomplish by attending the show.

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3 thoughts on “Trade Shows: A Book Promotion Tool

  1. Dear Marketing Christian Books, I find this post quite interesting from my experience as a published author of a “Christian book/novel.” My title, Winds Of Change, was published by CrossBooks in November 2012. This year, I paid for and allowed them to exhibit the title at the ICRS. -An email was sent to authors advising that they were free to attend the ICRS show, but not to hang out at the exhibit where their title would be featured. Hence, I did not go or seek to attend. I was led to believe my title would appear in their catalog, and that the books displayed would be similar in scenario to one going to a book store to browse at books. Whether or not people were directed to specific titles is not known to me. Additionally, for $500 paid to the publisher to exhibit, results remain unknown as to that having been a good investment. I am reasonably put off by this publisher based on experience, and will unlikely publish a Christian book ever again! Presently, I am contributing short stories with a component of faith-base to an eclectic anthology authored by H M Schuldt who is a believer but not bound to a category per se within the fiction realm. Kindest reaction, David Russell

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  2. David: I believe the greatest value in a trade show is in both having your book exhibited and in attending. If you were to attend a trade show, you would see that hundreds of books are on display. Most stores have very limited shelf space, so unless you have a unique title, it is easy for display titles to just get lost in the shuffle. On the other hand, attending allows you many other opportunities for connecting with others in the industry and developing leads to help you in promoting your book further. CSPA does not allow our attending authors to hang-out in the booth either, but hanging-out in a booth is not necessary to make connections at the show.

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  3. Also David, using an expensive vanity press is not the only option for publishing a book. If God leads you to write and publish another book, I recommend you check out other options for publishing the book yourself that are much more cost-effective.

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