Today we’ll discuss several of the more expensive ways to promote your books. Remember, I’ve said it takes money to make money, and when you promote and market yourself, it does take bucks.
How many bucks you want to invest in your marketing strategy depends on your financial situation. Mine is quite limited, but here are three techniques that have worked for me over the years:
1. Rent vendor’s space at conventions, conferences, or gatherings of like-minded folk. One of the best places I’ve sold books is at the annual PA state homeschool convention held every May for two days in a huge hall with over 150 vendors. Yes, the vending fee is expensive, and each year I just about break even, but as I’ve said before, “exposure is the key to successful book sales.” Thousands of homeschoolers attend this event every year. Usually, if families buy one or two books, they come back for more the next year or buy others online or at book stores. Last May, even with the poor economy, I sold 200 books at the homeschool convention over a two-day period. I’ve also had vending space at craft fairs and “horsie” events, most with reasonable vending fees, which paid off in the long run.
2. Offer special deals with your book sales. I have all kinds of special deals. These three are the most popular:
a. Buy a set of two or more and I tie them together with binder twine (used on hay bales) and include a free bookmark and a tiny plastic horse that is tied onto the front of the set. I also void the state tax (which I cover).
b. Get a nice 12″ high free horse model if you buy the entire Keystone Stables set.
c. Buy any four, get the fifth one free.
3. Buy ad space in magazines. This venue I’ve used very little except in local craft fair booklets or regional homeschool ad books. I can handle $25 or $50 per quarter of a page, but horse lovers’ magazines? Writers’ magazines? Farm or ranch magazines? Kids’ magazines? They start at $300 per quarter page, $1200 for a full page, which is far beyond what my budget can afford, so I stick with the “small stuff.”
So there you have it. Decide how much money you want to invest in making money and get busy.
Next time, we’ll discuss the pros and cons of self publishing.
Best-selling Author of the Keystone Stables books
(Writers Conference Information)
(Horse Facts Blog)