Wednesday, September 7, 2011

To Market To Market

We write because of our passion for words or maybe we want to educate others, motivate, or just entertain. Whatever the reason, we write because we love it. 

Some people may write for their own private enjoyment, but most of us want millions to enjoy our hard work. Unfortunately, that means we have to get out there and market our books and ourselves. It would be great if they all lined up around the block at our book signings or packed the house at one of our book readings. 

However, if you are just starting out there is a good chance that’s not going to happen. You are going to have to push up your sleeves and get busy.

I'm not on the New York Times bestseller list... just yet, but I have picked up a few tips along the way.

  • Don’t think just bookstores for signings. Who are your characters? Do they like to cook? Have a book signing in a kitchen store or the grand opening of a new restaurant.

  • I sell children’s books.  You’ll find me at children’s boutiques, festivals and grand openings of any type of company that caters to children’s activities.

  • Are your books geared towards female readers? Pair up with women who do home shows. Think Pampered Chef, Mary Kay and so on. Around the holidays your books may be just the last minute gift they were looking for.

  • How about a workshop? Have something you can teach your readers? My books are geared toward getting children to move during the story, to use their imagination and their bodies to bring the story to life. I give workshops on health, exercise and nutrition. I sell most of my books at these events. Even if you don’t feel like you could give a workshop; you could pair up with an expert. Romance novels your niche? Pair up with a marriage counselor for a free workshop on building a better marriage. Murder mysteries your passion? Pair up with a police officer or marital arts expert to give a free seminar on protecting yourself.  Maybe poems are your thing. Pair up with a chocolate shop and have a tasting and a reading around Valentines Day. 

  • The only limitation is your imagination.

 “There is no use trying,” said Alice;  “one can’t believe impossible things.” “I dare say you haven’t had much practice,” said the Queen. “When I was your age, I always did it for half an hour a day. Why, sometimes I've believed as many as six impossible things before breakfast.”

By: Martha Swirzinski, author, presenter and teacher


  1. This is a wonderful post and fits exactly what a woman who taught a seminar about publishing talked about doing. Your suggestions are even broader than hers were.

  2. Wonderful tips. My books are "western" themed, so I've done signings at western wear stores, feedstores and rodeos. I also do workshops. We have to continue our creativity beyond the page and into marketing!

    Heidi M. Thomas, author of WILLA Award-winning Follow the Dream

  3. Martha, great ideas. I especially like the "think outside the box" on book signings.

  4. Excellent promotional tips Martha, I especially like the workshopping ones.

  5. Martha, great tips for promoting your books. I love the quote!

  6. Heidi, I love that you've signed at feed-stores and rodeos.

  7. This is great and I shared it on my social links and blog. I feel everyone...even those who have been successful with marketing...can always use more tips.


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