Good marketing takes stepping outside of the usual and doing something unusual. I recently read an article in my local newspaper about how Little Free Library boxes are becoming quite a trend across the United States. The article got my creative juices flowing and I began to think about how these little boxes can represent a wonderful marketing opportunity for authors.
The Little Free Library trend started back in 2009 when a former school teacher in Wisconsin built a model of a one room schoolhouse. He filled this model with books, put it on a post in his front yard, and put a sign on it that said free books. His neighbors and friends loved it. He then built several more and gave them away.
The idea was simple. Visitors could take the books placed in the box to read. If they wanted to replenish the supply with their own they could, or they could return the book when they were done reading it if they wanted to. Five years later, there are over 20,000 Little Free Libraries worldwide registered with the Little Free Library group. Some people think this number is a low estimate for Little Libraries because it only represents those officially registered with the Little Free Library network.
Here is how you, an author, can make use of this neat idea to promote your books:
- Start a Little Free Library in your neighborhood. You can download free plans to build your own little library or you can order a kit starting at around $200. Once you have built your Little Free Library, you can stock it with books, including your own published books.
- Visit local Little Free Libraries in your city and leave a copy or two of your book in each one. You can find a map listing all the registered Little Free Libraries on the network website.
By joining the Little Free Library movement, you will not only be spreading the word about your books, you will also become part of a wonderful tool that shares the love of reading and can also help spread the Gospel.