Soooo you’ve written a book. Great! Now how are you going to sell it? One of the greatest tools and outlets that authors have every year are book fairs. There are literally hundreds of them around the country that you can get involved and showcase your book(s). We have participated in several and here are six reasons why you should too:
- Sell Books – The primary reason you go to a book fair is to sell books. That’s it. It’s the purpose for participation. Depending on when and where the book fair/festival is, you can actually sell hundreds of books. Some of the larger book fairs such as the Harlem Book Fair or The Book Expo in New York City, draws thousands of people and is totally focused on authors for book sales.
- Awareness – Part of your marketing plan should include bringing awareness to your book and the fact that you are a published author and have a story to tell or an expertise to offer. Your marketing materials should include signage and a take away for the people that stop by your booth or table. We have found that the majority people that become aware of our books actually purchase our books.
- Network with Community and Other Authors – There’s nothing greater than being in the midst of Community. When you attend local book fairs, it brings you face to face with people that live and work in the community and allows you the opportunity to network with them for further opportunities. You also get to meet authors that you may or may not have heard of, hear their stories and connect for future endeavors.
- Gain a Following – Book fairs allows you to the opportunity to increase your fan base. If you are relativity unknown or even somewhat a little known, you can list build with people signing up to stay in contact or with cool giveaways from your table/booth.
- Media Attention – If the event is marketed and promoted well, you can get media attention from local or national news outlets for you and your book(s) Most news outlets are interested in covering things that help the community and you should also market via social media
6. Sell Books – Yes, this was the first reason and the last reason why you should attend a book fair. Books are not meant to sit in the box they came in. Books are to be sold and distributed to the masses because you have a story to tell or you have something that will help someone else along the way. If the book fair/festival has time slots in which you can speak, be sure to try to get a spot on the schedule. Speaking and telling your story increases the likelihood that someone is going to buy your book.
Hope these tips are helpful. We have sold over 100,000 copies of our book Surviving Marriage in the 21st Century, and attending book fairs/festivals has given us a great boost. Being featured authors this year at Essencefest was not only great exposure but allowed our book to be elevated on the celebrity table.
We attended Philly’s Iqra Book Fair in September and as able to connect with numerous community people. Once you publish a book, it’s up to you to continuously market it and promote it. You constantly have to keep reaching out to new eyes. People cannot buy a book if they don’t know it exists. Have fun and happy traveling.