The Christmas rush! It's been fairly good for me, but with the season drawing to a close, I'm thinking ahead to next year and this whole marketing learning curve I've been on. What worked? What will I do differently?
I loved reading at schools! It was the children and teachers, however, not the sales that made it a great experience. I wish schools could help the author out a bit by advertising to parents. Some of the readings I did involved driving (gas money) and several hours of time, but I only sold 2 or 3 books. That doesn't cover costs. Next year, I'll see if schools might be willing to put up posters the week before, and I'll have to think of something better than colouring pages to send home with the children. One other thing I will do, is advertise myself as willing to come in to do writing workshops. (Thank you to MIllwoods Christian School-that was a great idea, and it helped pay a few bills!)
I've done some work talking to independent book stores, but the consignment agreements vary and if they take too large a percentage, they aren't worth the time and effort I'd have to put in. Some take up to 45%, or require an upfront fee to carry the book! I won't try that route until I need to unload stock. Shout out to Inspirations Book Store in Sherwood Park!!!! This store is treating me very well, inviting me to come in and read and sell my books for no charge! Thank you for supporting a local author! Also a shout out to the Common Word Book Store in Winnipeg!!! Their consignment fee is only 20% and that is doable for me.
Next year I will start reaching out to stores in October, to give myself a lot more time!
I've sat at 3 different craft fairs. One of them was largely a waste of time (and even a loss when I count gas money and the coffees I bought!) The other two resulted in 25 sales, so they were worth the time as long as I work on resisting the urge to buy the other crafter's things. I will do a few craft fairs again next year, but only if I have a second book to offer. (And that is the plan.)
Any sales experiences/advice you'd like to share with me?