A note for you from Author Carol McAdams Moore
A bookmark is an effective marketing tool that can be used by authors and retailers alike. When my tween devos came out, the creative people at Zondervan put together some amazing bookmarks. With each of my marketing efforts, I am increasingly more thankful for those bookmarks. Here is a list of seven benefits of bookmarks.
- Book signing icebreakers – All book signings have three common factors: author, reader or potential reader, and book. Let’s say your book signing table is close to the door of the store. Customers who enter the store must make a quick choice: to stop and chat (hopefully taking a look at your book) or to walk around your table into the heart of the store. Having a bookmark to offer each person entering the store is a sort of icebreaker. By offering a bookmark, the author has a natural opportunity to begin a conversation about the book or its topic. The potential reader may be drawn into the conversation or may choose to go on shopping.
- Reminders – Whether the potential reader (in #1) chooses to chat or not, the bookmark is a tangible reminder of the book. It may prompt the reader to take a closer look at the author’s book on the shelves. It may also cause the reader to follow up with purchasing the book at a later date.
- Bag stuffers – Retailers can use bookmarks as bag stuffers. These can serve as advertisements for upcoming book signings or simply to promote a new publication. Event coordinators can use bookmarks as bag stuffers as well when creating freebie bags for attendees.
- Shared items – Tucking two bookmarks inside each book (purchased or mailed for promotion) is a quick way to reach more readers. If the bookmarks are identical, the recipient has the opportunity to use one and pass one along to a friend. If the bookmarks represent two different books, the reader has been introduced to something to consider for his next purchase.
- Attendance prize fillers – Often event coordinators fill baskets for attendance prizes. The contents may be donated books, theme items, and bookmarks. Offering bookmarks to go in attendance prizes is an inexpensive way to get news of your book to even more potential readers.
- Snail mail inserts – Sending a few bookmarks to group leaders can help spread the word. A children’s author might send bookmarks to children’s ministry workers, homeschool leaders, or Christian school educators. Children’s workers are always looking for freebies to give out as prizes or take home items. Fun bookmarks can offer this to children’s workers, add another layer of advertising, and build a bridge between author and readers.
- Grass roots advertisement – A well-designed bookmark can often take the place of a business card. Casual conversation with someone on a plane or even a taxi driver can lead to book talk. Sharing a bookmark can be an easy way to pass the word on one’s book in situations where a business card may not be the norm.
What benefits bookmarks have you seen as reader, author, or retailer? I hope you will join in our discussion today.