Wednesday, March 12, 2014

Off to the Tucson Book Festival: Why Festivals Rock as Book Marketing Tools

One of the best ways to invest your marketing dollars is in book festivals. You can't look at a festival as a singular marketing strategy. Festivals return on investment (ROI) comes from the outreach and networking done to promote your book and get copies right in the hands of readers.

When attending a festival as an author, here are some activities that will deliver precious ROI:
  • Reviewers--hand the book and pitch it right to book reviewers. Meeting and talking about your book directly to a reviewer is much different than an email pitch. Make it memorable. Have you elevator speech prepared and deliver it effectively in 30 seconds or less. Make sure you collect the reviewer's business card so you can follow-up.
  • Readers--try and useful trick to build your following; do book giveaways with the request that the readers post Amazon reviews in exchange for the copy. If you have a series you're working on copy giveaways are worth it. Fan following equals bigger sales for the second book. So make a small investment in free copies to grow that baseline.
  • Agents--look for agents to either sell the next book (if you don't have one) or do future activities like sell foreign rights. Again, nothing makes a bigger impression than meeting someone face-to-face. Make sure you have a book proposal on-the-ready to give to the agent. Collect business cards and follow-up.
Different genres of books have various festivals celebrated throughout the nation. Some of the major mainstream fiction festivals include: Portland Book Festival, Miami Book Festival, RT Book Lovers Convention and Book Expo of America in New York City. 

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