Thursday, 05 May 2016

Marketing, does it make a difference to the reader?

Nina Pottell says it does.

nina 400x400"When I walk into a bookshop, what is it that draws me to buy a book? Is it the cover? The author and title? Is it the placing in the shop? That it's been a Sunday Times bestseller? Or because it has a sticker on it saying that it's been shortlisted for a book award?

"As a Twitter user, I know that there is a huge book community there, and publicists who put together amazing campaigns for their books. Theirs is clever marketing, which entices me as a reader, building momentum until publication date. All this is planned way ahead of that date.

"For me, seeing tweets for a new book, getting sampler chapters, be it in paper or ebook form, proof copies, all these build interest. I feel that authors being part of the marketing for their book is invaluable. An author getting involved in Twitter conversations is so great for a reader. I’m a huge fan of events with authors being interviewed, be it at a book festival or in a bookshop, and multiple authors whose books share a similar theme are always so interesting.

"But there are some marketing campaigns that go that bit further: the ‘share cards’. The quotes from others stating their love of the book, as seen for This Must Be The Place by Maggie O'Farrell; the train tickets for The Girl On The Train by Paula Hawkins; the sheep given to booksellers for The Trouble With Goats and Sheep by Joanna Cannon.

"There are PR people and publicists who go above and beyond marketing their books: Alison Barrow and her team at Transworld; Georgina Moore and her team at Headline and Tinder Press; the HarperFiction PR team; and Karen Sullivan from Orenda Books.

"I know that if I see someone whose reading opinion I admire talking about a new publication, I would feel encouraged to read it too. I always look at book recommendations in magazines, particularly Red magazine, and Woman and Home, as these always appeal to my reading tastes.

"As a reader, marketing and the right training can surely make a difference to which books get on those bestseller lists, get those stickers on them, get put at the front of bookshops, and make readers like me buy them."

The Publishing Training Centre marketing courses will provide you with the background knowledge to develop the right marketing strategy for your books.

Nina Potell is a hairdresser who loves to read. She blogs at and you can follow her on Twitter @Matineegirl


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