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Friday, December 7, 2012
Pushing Book Sales During the Holidays by Jennifer Hudson Taylor
It's that time of year again, when people are shopping, have budgeted to shop, and are in the mood to shop! This is good news for authors and publishers hoping to push book sales. As readers log into their favorite sites to purchase books during the season, authors are in the perfect position to promote their books to online consumers worldwide in a way that was never possible for authors in the past with print-only, store-only books.
Throughout the holiday season, publishers will be watching and hoping for increased sales to make up for any slumps that were suffered over the past year. Since ebooks sales grew 50% in 2012 and now make up 28% of all U.S. adult fiction and non-fiction sales, publishers will be paying close attention to ebooks in particular. This is where an author's online platform could make a difference in promotion efforts.
Book sales are expected to increase with iPads, tablets, Nooks and Kindles given as Christmas gifts. People who have these new gadgets and their new gift cards will be eager to try them out after the holiday and into January.
It isn't too late to pull together an effective marketing plan for the holidays. You still have 3 weeks left until Christmas and the whole month of January to convince these new gadget holders to download your book and try it out.
Offer Holiday Specials
Unless you are a self-published author who is in control of your sales prices, you don't have any control over discounts. If you do, offer some kind of discount to lure would-be readers. If not, find out if your publisher will be offering any discounts and promote it through your connections like crazy. You could always offer special pricing through your own website from your own stash of books, which would afford you to buy more books from your publisher. Consider bundle packages if you are a multi-published author with a few series out.
Create a Festive Theme
You could create a cute little graphic ad that you could post on your website/blog, newsletter, all your social media sites, and make it available for others to share. Write blog articles related to a theme or story in your book and post links to your social media accounts. Be sure to include your branded graphic with a link where to buy your book.
Partner with Other Authors
There is always more impact with more numbers. Approach other authors with your ideas and see if they would like to participate in a short blog tour, scavenger hunt, social media party, host a big contest with you, and swap blog articles.
Feel free to add a few more ideas in the comment section for others. What do you have planned for the holidays?
[note - please check the submission guidelines on the Submissions tab above!]
Joyce Hart, Owner and principal agent
Joyce Hart, owner and principal agent of Hartline Literary Agency has been a literary agent for more than a decade. She was formerly the vice president of marketing of an inspirational publishing company and as the president of Hartline Marketing has nearly thirty-two years of successful experience marketing and promoting books. Joyce has been a pioneer in selling high-quality fiction to the inspirational market and has built an excellent rapport with leading inspirational publishers. A member of ACFW, and the National Association of Professional Women, Joyce is a graduate of Open Bible College, Des Moines, IA now merged with Eugene Bible College in Eugene, Oregon. Joyce is based at Hartline Literary's Pittsburgh headquarters.
Terry Burns. Agent
Terry has been with the Hartline agency for over ten years, five years as an agent, and has a substantial list of clients, a growing list of credits, and a reputation for presenting to conferences all over the country. He is consistently listed near the top on the Publisher's Marketplace list of agents helping debut authors to publish. Terry comes from a writing background, has over 40 books of his own in print, most recently, adapted the Christian movie "Footprints" into book form, his Young Adult entitled Beyond the Smoke won the Will Rogers Medallion and has a book out on the skills needed to get published entitled "A Writer's Survival Guide to
Publication" that was developed out of the month long course he held for ACFW. A bookstore of his available works as well as a periodic blog can be found at http://www.terryburns.net. As an agent Terry says "I'm looking for a good book, well written in a unique voice, aimed at a market that looks promising, and where I feel I have the contacts appropriate to be able to sell the book in that market. I'm pretty open as to genre but I don't do picture books, sci fi or fantasy. He's a member of the Association of Author's Representatives (AAR).
Diana Flegal, Agent
Diana currently lives in Asheville NC. A Bible College major in Missions and Anthropology, Diana has been a medical missionary to Haiti, a women's speaker and bible study leader. One of her life's highlights has been teaching apologetics to high school students as preparatory for college. Avid reader and intuitive editor, Diana's represents nonfiction and well written fiction. She has a passion for getting great writers published.
Linda Glaz, Agent
Linda is an experienced editor, reviewer and writer, and for a couple of years was a final reader for Wild Rose Press, then for White Rose Publishing and she worked as an editorial assistant for Hartline Agent Terry Burns. She has judged for numerous contests including the Genesis for the American Christian Fiction Writers, as well as the Emily Award for the West Houston Chapter of the Romance Writers of America. She has been on the faculty for Faithwriters.com annual conference, Maranatha, and is slated for numerous others in 2013. Linda understands writers because she's a writer herself with 4 books releasing in 2013.
Andy Scheer, Agent
Andy has a wealth of experience as a publishing professional with over 18 years as the managing editor of Moody Magazine, 8 years as the managing editor for the Christian Writer’s Guild, and as a free-lance writer and editor. He is a frequent instructor at writing conferences around the country. A journalism graduate from Colorado State University, he also attended Denver Seminary. Andy is a consummate professional and will be a great addition to the Hartline team.
Jennifer Hudson Taylor, Publicist
In House Publicist / marketing advisor
Jennifer has over fifteen years experience in the publishing industry, working with other authors, agents and traditional publishers. Before breaking into publication, she worked for other companies providing website and graphic design, creative writing and copy editing services, print and online marketing. Jennifer will begin working with authors as they become a client to build platform and name identification, when they sign a contract, then again when they have a book to launch. If there are functions a client does not feel qualified to do she also offers additional assistance beyond her Hartline role at http://firstname.lastname@example.org