Sharon Souza - small
Hi, everyone. I hope you all had a blessed Christmas and will enjoy a happy, healthy, productive and prosperous New Year. In September I wrote about marketing to libraries. I conducted an extensive campaign to public libraries over the summer months, marketing my books to more than 2,300 libraries. Since writing my September post I've begun to check back at the libraries I targeted to see the results. I'm about half way through my list, and so far I've found that libraries have purchased several hundred copies of my books since my campaign. And quite often I find that one or more of my books is checked out. Of all the marketing endeavors I've undertaken to promote my books, this has been the most successful. That includes TV and radio interviews, blog tours, you name it.

I realize that selling a few hundred books to libraries won't turn my books into bestsellers, but I'm reaching an audience I might otherwise have missed. Readers who never knew about my blog tours or radio interviews have discovered me on the shelves of their library, and hopefully they're telling their friends about my books as well.

Judy Gann, who is such a fabulous resource for our group, shared information a few weeks ago about a survey conducted by her library system in Washington state. Results of the survey showed that the number one reason for a visit to the library is not to conduct research, borrow DVDs or meet friends, but it's still to check out books. Fiction is checked out more than anything else, and patrons are requesting more Christian fiction than ever before.

I won't belabor the point, but suffice it to say I'm very pleased with my marketing campaign to libraries. I only wish I'd started sooner, and you can believe it's the first thing I'll do with my next new release. Once again here is the link to the library site I found most helpful, but you can also Google California Public Libraries or the state of your choice to find other websites.

Please share with us your own library marketing experiences and any tips you've found along the way.

Sharon K. Souza is the author of Lying on Sunday and Every Good & Perfect Gift, as well as the novella and play A Heavenly Christmas in Hometown.

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