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Every author’s goal is to one day see their work proudly displayed on the shelves of bookstores everywhere – but this road can be a bit bumpy for an indie author who has to do all of the leg work themselves. Marketing your book to bookstores can be hard. We’ve got some tips on how to help get your book front and center in bookstores:
Do Your Research
Every bookstore is different; each neighborhood, owner, and customer type is going to vary from place to place. Pop into a couple of the stores you may want to potentially get your book into and check out the set-up. How do they set up their displays? What kinds of books do they have in their windows? Is the genre section your book is in front and center, or is it in a hard-to-find corner of the store? These are all great things to look out for when scouting bookstores to potentially pitch your book to.
You’re going to have to give the owner of the store a few good reasons to pick up your book. No one is just going to buy up all your copies and start stocking the shelves right then and there. Use your previous research about the business and their clients to help sell your book. Touch on why and how you believe your book fits into their ascetic. Additionally, point out why you believe their customers will enjoy it. (Check out our post on book marketing here!) Although it doesn’t necessarily guarantee you a spot on their shelves, coming prepared with a pitch is a sure-fire way to make yourself look the best. Of course, the worst a store can do is say no, but then you’re onto the next one!
If you thought this was helpful, check out Debbie Young’s article on bookshop distribution for more tips.