Use Bookstore Days to Promote Your Books

Bookstores want business and authors want opportunities to promote their books. Bring the two together and each can help the other.

As an author, you can piggyback on existing promotional opportunities to get more publicity for your books. Two upcoming events offer authors interesting marketing possibilities.

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Author Handselling Day

This Saturday (November 30) is Small Business Saturday. Author Sherman Alexie decided to start a new movement. This year, he invited authors to handsell books at their local independent bookstores on Small Business Saturday. On this day, which he is calling “Indies First”, Sherman wants authors to spend time at their local bookstore and make recommendations to people on what books to buy. He wants authors to not just promote their own books, but other books as well. For Indies First, authors are encouraged to pick a bookstore and talk to the owner to come to an agreement about how you will spend your time in their store that day.

The American Booksellers Association (ABA) likes the idea and has decided to support it. The ABA has a website page devoted to “Indies First” where authors can sign up to participate. Currently, over 700 authors have signed up and over 500 bookstores nationwide will be supporting them.

It is not too late to call your local Christian bookstore and see if they would like to be part of Author Handselling Day and host your time.

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Take Your Child to a Bookstore Day

Saturday, December 7, is the fourth annual Take Your Child to a Bookstore Day. Over 500 bookstores around the world participate in this event. The mission of the event is to introduce children to bookstores and everything they have to offer. It’s also an opportunity for children to interact with booksellers and receive personal recommendations about books to read.

If you are a children’s author, you can use this already established day designed to help bookstores to both help your local bookstore and promote your books. Contact your local Christian bookstore, tell them about this event and volunteer to be a resident author for part of the day. What richness this will add to the experience of the children who come to the store for this special day. Not only will they be able to learn about new books, but your presence will allow them to meet and interact with an author.

Opportunities for authors to promote their books abound. You can take advantage of these events to piggyback your marketing efforts and find new readers for your books.

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Take Your Child to a Bookstore

Did you know that this Saturday is Take Your Child to a Bookstore Day?

The idea is the brainchild of author Jenny Milchman. Of the day, Jenny says, “Take Your Child to a Bookstore Day began when my children were little and I was going to story time at bookstores nearly every week. Did all children know the pleasure of spending time in a bookstore? I wondered. Of being drawn into a magic world for a while, then being left to choose treasures on the shelf? I wanted to begin a holiday that would expose as many kids as possible to this joy.”

This year marks the second annual Take Your Child to a Bookstore Day.

If you are the author or publisher of a children’s book, you can capitalize on this day to get some exposure for your books. After all, not all parents may be able to physically take their children to a bookstore on December 3. Some live too far from a local bookstore, others may just be too busy.

Why not offer a discount on your children’s books for Take Your Child to a Bookstore Day? Encourage parents to take their children to your virtual bookstore if they can’t get to a physical bookstore and offer them a great discount on your books as an incentive. After all, December is a Christmas gift shopping month. Remind parents that they can purchase books for their children at the discounted price, but that they can also pick up an additional book as a gift for one of their children’s friends or maybe a niece or nephew.

The official Take Your Child to a Bookstore Day offers free digital images you can use in your promotional efforts.

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