300 Seconds: Upcoming IndieNext Deadlines

Here’s a 5-minute marketing task. It’s time to send in nominations for the October 2017 IndieNext list. They are due tomorrow, August 4, 2017, at midnight Pacific.

Just a reminder… these blurbs do not have to be perfect. The folks at the ABA will even help with grammar and whatnot. Either email your nomination to indienextlist@bookweb.org or use the online form.

And if you’re feeling especially productive, nominations for the Winter 2017-2018 Reading Group List are due August 15, 2017. Send them to the same email address or use the same form above. (Look at you working ahead!)

My Favorite Tweet of Late

I really liked this tweet from Magers & Quinn Booksellers in Minneapolis, Minnesota. Here’s why:

  • I love the use of humor.
  • I really like that it offers a ‘peek behind the curtain’ at the alluring lives of booksellers.
  • I like that it has broad audience appeal. Booksellers and non-booksellers alike will smile.
  • It’s a gentle reminder that there are books to be bought. Preferably sooner rather than later.

Follow Magers & Quinn on Twitter @magersandquinn.

Instagramming ‘The Readymade Thief’

Here are some images for The Readymade Thief by Augustus Rose from our Books & Whatnot Instagram feed.

All of our original content is intended for use by independent booksellers. Feel free to use these images in your own feed.

One-to-Few Marketing

One-to-Few Marketing

In a recent post on the Buffer Social blog, Alfred Lua wrote why he thought engagement was replacing traffic and revenue as the future of social media.

“Social media is no longer a megaphone,” he wrote. “It is now becoming a one-to-few β€” and often one-to-one β€” channel.”

It struck a chord with me, and I remembered it about a week later when I was on social media.

A few weeks ago, I interviewed Siobhan Fallon about her book The Confusion of Languages. I always ‘follow’ all of the authors I interview so I can tag them when I share the finished news features and podcasts through social media. Since I followed Fallon, I saw when she posted this on Facebook:

I immediately shared the post with a few friends who I knew had read the book. I wanted them to be able to follow along with Fallon’s game.

But why limit it to my friends? At your bookstore, a quick search should return a list of customers who purchased The Confusion of Languages and/or You Know When the Men Are Gone. A phone call or a quick email later, you’ve just shared relevant content with an audience who appreciates it.

One-on-one conversations do not have to take place face-to-face in the store. Neither do handselling or customer service.

Head & Shoulders Above

Last week I wrote about the need to update the staff images on your website. Rachel Bellavia, marketing and events coordinator at Read Between the Lynes in Woodstock, IL, sent another great staff photo suggestion.

“You never know who among your customers are professional (or semi-pro) photographers,” writes Rachel. “We have a number of photographers among ours, but our employee Evie’s mom offered to take free headshots of all the staff.”

Evie’s mom is Nancy Merkling of Nancy Merkling Productions in Harvard, IL. She took shots of all of the staff holding their favorite book. The images are featured along with staff bios on the Meet the Read Between the Lynes Staff page on the store website.

Rachel (pictured here with The Hobbit) adds, “She made us all look extra amazing!”

Rachel is right when she says sometimes we don’t know when there are professional or semi-professional photographers among our customers. It’s worth putting a query out in the store newsletter or on social media.

Free headshots are extremely generous. If you don’t have an employee’s photographer-mother among your customer database, you might have a customer who would be willing to extend a discount if you’re willing to extend the same courtesy. In the end, even if you cannot work out a discount or a trade, it’s good business to support your customers.