Marketing 101

I’ll admit I don’t know much about the whole marketing/promo scheme of things when it comes to books. I’m familiar with going to cons and finding row upon row of tables stocked with all kinds of things – bookmarks, postcards, light-up boobies, pens, feathers, candy…anything and everything to get people to stop and pick them up, on the off chance another book might get sold.

Of course, the big question here is does such marketing actually work?

And no one really seems to know the answer. Plenty of people insist that it does and plenty don’t. We’ve all heard stories of writers who spent a small fortune on marketing gewgaws that seemed to make no difference…and then did almost no marketing at all next time around and sold a ton.

Was it because of the venue? Or perhaps nothing more than the fact that by the second book, people knew who the author was? Maybe it was just a better written book?

It’s probably a complete crapshoot, honestly, but it’s something I’m going to have to start thinking about – if nothing else, then for the author signings at the various cons I’ll be attending next year. But I decided to take the  plunge last week with some pretty snappy bookmarks – most of which are heading to a table at World Fantasy Con, which I can’t attend due to my Nov 1 deadline. However, I have *awesome* author friends who are going to put my stuff on their table. My stuff being bookmarks and business cards. Maybe I’ll give away an ARC. I’ll have to see.

I haven’t been on this side of the table yet…but I do have to admit I’ve never bought a book from picking up a bookmark about it. That being said, I’m sure there are plenty of people who do and I’m more than willing to give it a shot to see if helps at all. At this point, I just want to at least get the word of my book out there, (without being obnoxious about it, of course), and this seems like a nice way of going about it.

And btw, I’m throwing a plug out for Robin Ludwig Design for awesome turnaround time and gorgeous design. Folks – I hit up Robin on Twitter on Monday afternoon, sent her my cover image and I had 1000 brilliant bookmarks by Friday. You cannot beat that with a stick.

And just an FYI – I do owe a few people ARCs and I’m hoping to get those out this week too, so thanks for everyone’s patience.

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