Kindle Forum banner
1 - 20 of 47 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
942 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi everyone. I don't usually start threads of my own, so be merciful.

I'm going to the RT Booklover's Convention in Kansas City in May. I'll be sitting behind a table in a vast room filled with hundreds of authors for the Expo--one that is designed for graphic artists and digital-first writers. They have a deal with AllRomance so you can sell your ebooks right there to the readers who come by (though why they would buy an ebook in this way is unclear to me) or you can sell physical books that you bring with you.

OK. So. I have to tell the RT organizers how many copies of my book(s) I'm going to bring... but I have no idea if anyone will buy one, let alone ten or twenty.

Does anyone have any suggestions? I've been publishing now since Feb of 2011, so I might have some fans but, if so, they are shy, quite types who don't start national organizations to flatter me. (Yet.)

Any advice on how many copies of my books I should bring? Any specific advice for RT?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
406 Posts
Good question. I'm also curious about this.

I have a local event this weekend and will accidentely have close to 40 books to sell (error in a shipping date where I thought the books wouldn't arrive on time so in a panic, I had to order more... and now they will all be here in time!  :eek: )

Anyway, I was wondering the same thing. I wouldn't want to have too few books but I also don't want to show up with all 40 and look silly when they are still there at the end of the day!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,698 Posts
In my opinion, it has to do with how well of a sales person you are.  You can sit there and hide behind your table/booth and only talk to people that pick up your book on a whim and you might sell half a dozen.  Or you can stand in front of your booth, engage every single person that walks by and have something to offer them, like a sample or bookmark, even if they don't buy your book.  These people will sell out.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,299 Posts
SBJones said:
In my opinion, it has to do with how well of a sales person you are. You can sit there and hide behind your table/booth and only talk to people that pick up your book on a whim and you might sell half a dozen. Or you can stand in front of your booth, engage every single person that walks by and have something to offer them, like a sample or bookmark, even if they don't buy your book. These people will sell out.
Too many variables. What's the event (some types don't attract buyers)? How many in attendance? How closely aligned is the crowd to your genre/age/target demographic? As SB said, how good are you at selling? How attractive are your books? How attractive is your price point? Are you offering discounts?

Then there's the unknown.

I took 50 copies of my book to a zombie walk (not expecting to sell very many; folks go to stare at other people, eat brats and swig beer), but I sold a couple dozen. I did a signing at a local paranormal books even and sold two (I think I was out-competed by the other author in attendance).
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,839 Posts
Gretchen Galway said:
Hi everyone. I don't usually start threads of my own, so be merciful.

I'm going to the RT Booklover's Convention in Kansas City in May. I'll be sitting behind a table in a vast room filled with hundreds of authors for the Expo--one that is designed for graphic artists and digital-first writers. They have a deal with AllRomance so you can sell your ebooks right there to the readers who come by (though why they would buy an ebook in this way is unclear to me) or you can sell physical books that you bring with you.

OK. So. I have to tell the RT organizers how many copies of my book(s) I'm going to bring... but I have no idea if anyone will buy one, let alone ten or twenty.

Does anyone have any suggestions? I've been publishing now since Feb of 2011, so I might have some fans but, if so, they are shy, quite types who don't start national organizations to flatter me. (Yet.)

Any advice on how many copies of my books I should bring? Any specific advice for RT?
I'd bring 50. Leave 30 in the car...creates the scene that you've only got a few HOT-SELLERS left. Not too few, not too many. Once they're out, take a restroom break, re-stock from your car and repeat the success cycle. My two cents...or two pence! :D Wish you the best of sales with your event!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
78 Posts
SEAN H. ROBERTSON said:
I'd bring 50. Leave 30 in the car...creates the scene that you've only got a few HOT-SELLERS left. Not too few, not too many. Once they're out, take a restroom break, re-stock from your car and repeat the success cycle. My two cents...or two pence! :D Wish you the best of sales with your event!
That is an excellent plan.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
78 Posts
Darn it. Do you think there will be a way to hide them under your table? Invisibility cloak or such like?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,413 Posts
I almost always find that I brought too many and have the headache of lugging books back. I think it's better to have fewer and sell out. I would go for 20 - 30. If you can drop ship them from the printer (if there's time), that's a great way to get them there. Media Mail is your friend.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
267 Posts
I take ~40 of each book. I only put out enough to decorate the table and hide the others in boxes under the table.

I'd recommend investing in an easel and poster showing your books. It will draw folks to your table (at least it did for me).

I also had printouts with a photo, short synopsis and QRC bar codes for anyone who wanted to buy the ebook.

Here are a couple photos of how I do my convention table.



Hope it helps.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
942 Posts
Discussion Starter · #11 ·
maritafowler said:
Hope it helps.
That's awesome! Thank you. I love the easel idea--I even have one. I love the covers for the Fat Bodyguards, btw--just a fantastic fat-positive vibe. Thanks for posting the pictures.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
942 Posts
Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Hugh Howey said:
I almost always find that I brought too many and have the headache of lugging books back. I think it's better to have fewer and sell out. I would go for 20 - 30. If you can drop ship them from the printer (if there's time), that's a great way to get them there. Media Mail is your friend.
Thanks for the media mail tip. I'm using CreateSpace, staying at the hotel; I suppose I could have them sent to me there?

And all of you are recommending way more books than I'd intended. I was thinking, like, five. So twenty or more would be a shock, but I'll do it.

And I'm still in awe of Marita's photo. That gives me such great ideas. I hear bribes involving processed carbohydrates are also good. I'm better with winning people with food than hand-shaking charm, though my dad was a car salesman (maybe that's why...)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,642 Posts
If you are flying, do not bring more than 20 books. If you get down to one or two, offer free shipping on sending it to them.

I *highly* recommend finding a way to get your books up from being flat or low. Since you're flying, you'll not want a lot of junk with you, but you can build a little rack from the books themselves. I have this rack for events.

 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,839 Posts
Hi, Gretchen. Is there a contact for the event that you can drop ship fifty books to, prior to the event, then pick them up on the cab ride to the location? Or, ship them directly to the location?  ;)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,462 Posts
I'm going to one later this year and was wondering the same. I was thinking of taking a small suitcase - with wheels and a handle to lug the unsold books back again. (Am used to lugging small children around, so I'm thinking a suitcase on wheels can't be that bad lol)

Deanna - love the dip-dye hair!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
942 Posts
Discussion Starter · #18 ·
Yeah, thank you another great picture of a great setup, Deanna.

For this event, though, I won't have room for quite so much greatness, but it gives me a place to start. Looks like I'll have about two feet to work with. Here's a picture from last year:


It's an ebook-specific event, but I wanted to have some print books out as an option since I won't be at the primary booksigning.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,299 Posts
Even with such a small space, you can do a lot vertically with the right types of racks (Staples/Office Depot have these):


Given your limited space and the ebook emphasis, I'd go easy on the print book copies and push:
1. Bookmarks or cards with your book cover and a QR code that sends a browser using a smartphone directly to where they can buy the book, and
2. A laminated sheet(s) with your book(s) (cover images, brief pitch and a review blurb or two), all with associated QR codes.

You may also want to consider (if you have the resources) printing booklets of your first chapter. (The "Free Sneak Peek" in the image above was mine.) Include links/QR codes at the end. These take up significantly less space and are something a bit more substantial than a card/bookmark.

Finally, as others have said, limit tabletop print copies. I usually place a single copy on the table with a "Display copy only - ask for availability" sticker on it, because they can get ratty and folks like having a pristine copy without other people's fingerprints on it ;)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
267 Posts
Gretchen Galway said:
It's an ebook-specific event, but I wanted to have some print books out as an option since I won't be at the primary booksigning.
With only two feet of space, wire plate holders might help you display your books.

 
1 - 20 of 47 Posts
Top