Joining Book Festivals: 5 Ways To Maximize Your Appearance
If you want to promote your book, joining book fairs is an option worth exploring. Once you sign up, you’re likely to have thousands of readers and industry experts within your reach. But for your time in these events to truly make an impact, you need to plan things out carefully.
So how do you make the most out of your appearance? Aside from having concrete objectives and choosing the right fair, there are a few things you should consider doing.
1. Invite your readers over.
If you already have a following, no matter how big or small, don’t forget to invite them to the event. This will give you the chance to know your audience better. Their presence will also help you create a welcoming atmosphere around your table. Who knows, they might even attract passersby too. After all, people are naturally drawn to crowds.
But how exactly can you invite your readers? A simple post on your social media page, an email blast to your blog’s subscribers, or a press release campaign are just some of the marketing tactics you can use to spread the word.
2. Bring something new to the table.
If you sign up for a space at a literary festival, you’re usually provided with the standard table, chair, and, in some cases, a standee. With most of the equipment provided to you, all you need to do is to sit back and wait for your readers to approach your booth. But if you want to draw a crowd, you might want to kick it up a notch by personalizing your space.
Adding elements of your book’s genre to your booth is a great way to level up its presentation and engage readers. For example, if you’re a fantasy novel author, you can design your space with elves, dwarves, and other mythological creatures. You can even dress up as one of your characters. Be as creative as you can be and try ideas that you think will attract attention. Just don’t forget to work within the regulations of the festival—you don’t want to get suspended!
3. Practice your book pitch.
A slick, presentable outfit and a jazzed-up table might help you project an approachable image to festivalgoers, but to sustain their interest, you’ll have to work on your pitch.
Consider being proactive first and hook curious visitors with interesting, open-ended questions. For example, if you’re an author who just published a book about finance, you can ask, “What’s your ideal financial level?”
Once you get your visitor’s interest, keep the conversation going with your pitch. Remember to keep it short and simple. Should your prospects have additional questions, don’t be afraid to answer them. And who knows, they might turn out to be the readers you’ve been looking for.
4. Get involved.
Literary festivals aren’t just about book exhibits and signings. It’s also where writers and authors can join programs, presentations, and workshops to hone their skills or expand their network. As an emerging author, you can use these festival events to introduce your book to a specific group of readers. You can even volunteer to join a panel where you can share your expertise and, at the same time, inform an audience about your self-published book.
5. Work with a team.
At this point, you might think that joining book fairs can be a little overwhelming. Well, it does take a ton of effort, but here's the good news: you don’t have to do it all by yourself. You can form or employ a team that will help you budget, schedule, organize, and even look for book fairs that you can join.
This is where WestBow Press comes in. We can help you set up your own book signing event at book fairs like the 2020 Tucson Festival of Books, one of the largest literary festivals in the nation.
Not ready to host your own book signing session yet? We also offer display space for your book in our on-site gallery.
So what do you say? Want to team up at the Tucson Festival of Books?
Contact your Marketing Consultant today at 1.866.928.1240 to learn more or to book your spot.