In this episode we are going to talk about how you can use bookmarks and business cards to sell more books. Many authors have no idea they are using these promotion pieces poorly. But don’t worry, we will teach you how and when to get the most out of bookmarks and business cards.

Show Notes

Bookmarks vs. Business Cards

  • Bookmarks are for Readers
  • Business cards are for influencers

What is the purpose of business cards?

  • Make follow up with you easy.
  • Help connect you with influencers.
  • To sell books? Not really. That is what bookmarks are for.

Format

  • Fancy Front (Glossy Color or Fuzzy Matte)
  • Matte Back (So people can write notes)
  • Leave room for white space on the back.
  • Standard size and shape, this is not the time to shock brocca.
  • Thick cardstock

What to put on the business card:

  • Name
  • Email
  • Phone Number
  • Website
    • No HTTP
    • CamelCase
    • Dubs are optional.
  • Face?
  • Book Cover?
  • Social Media Links?

Why Bookmarks?

  • Bookmarks creates a chance to sell your book and other books in the series.
  • Readers love bookmarks
  • Readers always need more bookmarks
  • Creates a small sense of reciprocity. A bookmark feels like a small gift.
  • A chance to promote your book inside someone else’s book
  • Less likely to be thrown away than a business card.

Bookmark Design Principles

  • Less is more
  • You want people to enjoy looking at the bookmark.
  • Avoid Design By Committee (Episode 19)
  • Keep your bookmark focused. A bookmark is not a catalogue. That is what your website is for.
  • Like a coin with a heads and tails (or a Dollar Bill with a face and back.)
  • The higher quality the bookmark, the longer people are likely to keep it. But remember, bookmarks tend to disappear into unfinished books.

Front Bookmark Elements

  • Book Cover OR Book Over Elements
    • Title
    • Author
    • Image
  • Short Blurb or High Concept
  • Landing Page at BookTitle.com (Example: CourtshipInCrisis.com)

Back Bookmark Elements

  • Series Book Covers  
  • Series Blurbs  
  • Website
  • Author Photo & Bio  
  • QR Code? Probably not.

What to do with bookmarks

  • Go to local bookstores to see if they will give them away for free at the counter.
  • Hand them out at events you speak at or attend.
  • Include them in SWAG bags when possible (and not too expensive)
  • Include them with signed copies you mail out.
  • Take them to local libraries to see if librarians will give them away for free. Some libraries have a table for these sorts of giveaways so you don’t even need to ask.
  • Put them in your books if you’re in the library
  • Give them anywhere there is a waiting room. Your dentist’s office may be happy to have a stack of bookmarks at check in especially if you give the receptionist a free copy of your book.
  • Mail several to each person on your launch team along with a hand written note

Where to get a professional business card & bookmark designs.

  • Your cover designer, especially for the bookmark.
  • 99Designs.com $149 for Business Card, $299 for Bookmark. If you are getting your cover in 99d you can pay a little more to make the project a “custom project” at that point you can ask the designers give you both a book cover AND a book mark.
  • Fiverr.com (Affiliate Link + 20% discount) $5 – $50

Where to get your Bookmarks Printed

  • Moo.com – Has a Luxe Paper stock option. (Wow factor)
  • VistaPrint.com – Lots of free templates for DIY design.  
  • PrintRunner.com
  • Post your favorite printer in the Facebook group

Final Tips

  • Print half as many as you think you need. Authors tend to overprint card and marks to bring the cost per unit down.
  • Think long term, you want what you print to not go out of date right away.

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