Print Page   |   Contact Us   |   Sign In   |   Register
SIBA Express
Blog Home All Blogs
This is the collection of posts provided to Bargain Book News for all booksellers from SIBA, with love.

 

Search all posts for:   

 

Top tags: Lucey  Martin Lindstrom  okra picks  Page 158  Small Data  stars  Wake Forest 

Have you hugged a writer today?

Posted By Wanda Jewell, Thursday, August 13, 2015

SIBA will host over 125 writers next month at our annual Discovery Show and I imagine combined across all of the regional shows, there will easily be 1000 writers hoping their next book catches your attention.  Shows like the fall shows coming up, Winter Institute, Book Expo America and many smaller events across the country offers opportunities to get to know writers and to build relationships that can last a lifetime.  These relationships are the foundation on which this industry sits.  Because it is all about the story and without these storytellers, the rest of us have little to do. 

How can these relationships work?

·         Invite local authors to introduce visiting authors at your events.

·         Ask authors to share what they are reading and post these lists on your website and on social networks.

·         If you are up for something new and exciting, try this fresh idea – Author Duels!

·         When prepping your newsletter, email a few authors and see if any would like to right a quick review of something they are reading right now.

·         Ask authors to place you on their press list and share their good news – awards won, new books placed with an agent, or a publisher – we all love good news.

·         Follow authors on Twitter, Facebook, Instagram and let them know you love them.  Share when their books arrive in the store or when you sell one.  Just anything that gives you an opportunity to connect.  Writers won’t forget who did this for them.

Writers are often left feeling out of the loop and we need to remind ourselves and them, that without them, we have nothing, no stories, no books, no words strung together.  Have you hugged a writer today?

The Southern Independent Booksellers Alliance (SIBA) and the Great American Bargain Book Show (GABBS) have partnered up in many ways that have proved beneficial but we mostly want our efforts to benefit booksellers and with that goal in mind, BBN has agreed to give us a little space in their popular, far-reaching newsletter.  So, a few housekeeping details.  We are hoping to benefit all booksellers but a few columns may be SIBA-specific and we’ll let you know up front when that’s the case.  We’d also like to invite booksellers to offer up guest posts so if you have an idea or concept that you’d like to share, simply email wanda@sibaweb.com.

This post has not been tagged.

Share |
PermalinkComments (1)
 

Holiday Catalogs sell books!

Posted By Nicki Leone, Friday, July 17, 2015

If you belong to any of the regional bookseller trade associations, this is the time of year that you start to place your orders for their Holiday Catalog. The catalogs are one of the more visible and cost effective benefits of belonging to a regional association. Anywhere from 16 to 32 pages, full color, professionally designed, imprinted with the store’s own logo and information, and printed in enough quantities they can be inserted into local newspaper circulation, handed out in stacks at community information booths, and mailed to every customer on a store’s mailing list – the Holiday Catalog is a promotional tool that would normally be well beyond the resources of the average small bookstore.

How effective are holiday catalogs? To date they remain the single most highly-rated service the Southern Independent Booksellers Alliance (SIBA) offers its members – ranking above even SIBA’s annual trade show with its hundreds of authors and piles of free books and review copies.

“It brings a level of professionalism to my store that I couldn't afford, having a color catalog with my logo on it! My customers LOVE IT and it makes us very proud. I think it’s one of the best things we indies have for promotion.” – Sue Hinkle, Page After Page Bookstore in Elizabeth City, North Carolina

Stores that were initially doubtful about the benefits of the catalog continually found themselves pleasantly surprised by the unexpected sales it generates, often on titles the store wouldn’t have otherwise thought to promote.

“We have customers coming to the store even after the holidays with copies of the catalog marked with their notes and wishes!” —John Cavalier, Cavalier House Books, Louisiana

But the other great benefit to participating in a Holiday Catalog program is the exposure it brings to your store, often even after the holiday shopping season is over. SIBA catalog orders start at 2000 copies per store, and can be printed in almost any quantity needed. Stores serving larger markets have ordered as many as 50,000 or 60,000, and arranged for them to be dropped shipped (for free) directly to their local paper for inserting. Stores often leave stacks of the catalog at coffee shops, libraries, any public venue that allows business to distribute literature. And of course they use them in store as well – as bag stuffers, store newsletters, and display themes. Each year something like a quarter of a million catalogs are printed, imprinted with specific bookstore names, and distributed throughout the South.

The end result is a tool that makes Southern indie bookstores highly visible during the busiest shopping season of the year.
To find out more about the Holiday Catalog program in your area, contact your Regional Bookselling Association, or visit sibaweb.com/catalog.

This post has not been tagged.

Share |
PermalinkComments (0)
 

The Discovery Show: Why Face to Face Matters

Posted By Nicki Leone, Friday, July 17, 2015
It may be high summer outside, but at SIBA we are already thinking about fall, as we finalize plans for our annual Discovery Show. The event formerly known as “The SIBA Trade Show” is one of the largest industry book shows in the South, if not the country. Some 500+ booksellers, exhibitors, authors and press attend the show each year to talk books and bookselling and how to become more successful in the industry. It remains the most popular of SIBA’s long list of programs, and the one that booksellers and vendors alike consistently cite as the most valuable thing SIBA offers.

So why should you take the time to attend SIBA’s Discovery Show?


Well there are the 100+ authors you can meet. The entire day dedicated to education, author panels, and workshops. The stacks of advance reading copies available to attendees. The 100+ exhibitors that will fill the show floor with books you didn’t even know you wanted to read. There’s the mediocre food. (Just kidding – meals at the show are usually designed to showcase new cookbook releases, so they can be pretty awesome). All great stuff. But what’s the most important reason to come to the Discovery Show?


Networking. The biggest resource at the show isn’t the tables filled with books or the authors you get to meet. It’s the other people who are attending the show. If you are a bookseller, you can talk to your peers about common problems that you each face running a small business. Whatever issues you are dealing with, the odds are your fellow booksellers have run into the same problems, and maybe even found solutions. If you are a vendor, then you can meet with potential new accounts, find out what they are looking for, and figure out how to meet their needs. And of course, no matter who you are, you can talk to people about what they’ve been reading. 


In the end, it’s all about the importance of face-to-face communication. If you are a bookstore looking to convince an author to visit you on their tour, then you can talk to their publisher about how to make that happen. If you are a publisher trying to convince stores to try a new novel, then the booksellers you need to talk to will be walking right by your booth. The doors you’ve been struggling to open, the people you’ve been playing phone tag with, they will all be on site and in a mood to listen.


The book industry is still despite all its innovation an industry that is driven by word-of-mouth buzz. “You’ve got to read this!” is still the magic phrase that makes readers pick up a new book and The Discovery Show is a weekend filled with back-to-back “You’ve got to read this” moments.


See for yourself:
The 2015 SIBA Discovery Show
September 18-20, 2015
Hilton North Raleigh/Midtown
Raleigh, NC 
Sibaweb.com/trade-show

This post has not been tagged.

Share |
PermalinkComments (0)
 

Awards Work When You Work Them

Posted By Wanda Jewell, Thursday, July 16, 2015

Today’s column will deal with book awards.  SIBA maintains a Pinterest Board Simple Ideas for Small Budgets, that can assist with merchandising and displaying book award winners. You can send cool solutions you use that can be added to the board and share them with other stores, if you’d like.  Send them to wanda@sibaweb.com. There are so many book awards.  How does a book store capitalize on these awards and move some books? 

Here is how we work book awards: 

·         Do a display of winners across the awards.  Checking this list of major awards would result in a display of The Melancholy of Resistance, The Adventures of Beekle: The Unimaginary Friend, The Crossover, Redeployment, Age of Ambition: Chasing Fortune, Truth, and Faith in the New China, Faithful and Virtuous Night, Brown Girl Dreaming, Dora Bruder / The Search Warrant, Atticus Lish Preparation for the Next Life, The Pope and Mussolini: The Secret History of Pius XI and the Rise of Fascism in Europe, All the Light We Cannot See, Between Riverside and Crazy, The Sixth Extinction: An Unnatural History, Encounters at the Heart of the World: A History of the Mandan People, Digest, Lila, The Problem of Slavery in the Age of Emancipation, Can't We Talk About Something More Pleasant?, Tennessee Williams: Mad Pilgrimage of the Flesh, Citizen: An American Lyric, The Essential Ellen Willis.  Now that’s a diverse display!

·         Participate in awards in which you are invited.  For example, The SIBA Book Awards are nominated by southern member bookstores, their staff, and customers.  Follow the award process, promoting the long list, the finalists, and the winners.  Involve your customers in the process.  Hold in-store events to predict the winners,

·         Create a store book award – enjoin customers, book clubs, local celebrities, to create the criteria and the categories and use the process both to engage your customers and to sell books. Use #Team(BookTitleHere) for Twitter voting.

·         Feature a Book Prize and a link to the winners on your website and in your newsletters. 

·         Start a Grandparents Award Editions club.  Display all of the Caldecott & Newbery books both in-store and online.  Send a Caldecott each month to young grandchildren, and then graduate them to Newbery. 

·         Consider engaging a local librarian or former English teacher to manage your Awards outreach effort in exchange for advance copies or a store discount.

A lot of energy, enthusiasm, and effort going in to a plethora of book awards across many genres, and industries.  All of this indicates a market for the winners.  Capitalize on this and sell these books.  

This post has not been tagged.

Share |
PermalinkComments (0)
 

Cool Things Bookstores are Doing

Posted By Wanda Jewell, Thursday, July 16, 2015

Today’s column will deal with cool things bookstores come up with to offer customers outside of the traditional bookselling and author events, book clubs and readings.  SIBA maintains a Pinterest Board Cool stuff bookstores do besides sell books. You can send cool things you are doing that can be added to the board and share them with other stores, if you’d like.  Send them to wanda@sibaweb.com. Shows, like GABBS & SIBA, other Regional Shows, Winter Institute, and BEA, are a great way to have the time to talk with colleagues about what they are doing and attend sessions about new programs or concepts that are sweeping the bookstore community with loads of success for many.

Here are some of the cool things going on around us: 

·         Sell store swag.  Use local printers or an online affiliate like cafepress or zazzle.

·         Make it easy for customers to support their local schools online and bill it as a year-round Book Fair.

·         Offer Tarot Card Readings or Runes Readings in store.

·         Offer classes on a variety of topics using local experts.  Engage a local college or university.

·         Host a BookSwap!

·         Put together a Frequent Buyers or Store Loyalty program.

·         Offer Volunteer and Internship Opportunities.  Use www.idealist.org

·         Use your staff recommendations as social networking content.  Take photos of your Staff Picks Section and share the comments booksellers are making.  You could even give your Staff Picks their own Facebook page or Twitter board.

Some ideas take a lot of pre-planning and some only take a few minutes and a few items.  Don’t be afraid to try different things and if they don’t catch on, give it up and move on the next idea.  Don’t marry ideas.  They are not good long-term partners. 

The Southern Independent Booksellers Alliance (SIBA) and the Great American Bargain Book Show (GABBS) have partnered up in many ways that have proved beneficial but we mostly want all of our efforts to benefit booksellers and with that goal in mind, BBN has agreed to give us a little space in their popular, far-reaching newsletter.  So, a few housekeeping details.  We are hoping to benefit all booksellers but a few columns may be SIBA-specific and we’ll let you know up front when that’s the case.  We’d also like to invite booksellers to offer up guest posts if you have an idea or concept that you’d like to share, simply email wanda@sibaweb.com.

This post has not been tagged.

Share |
PermalinkComments (0)
 

Gifts Galore for Bookstores

Posted By Wanda Jewell, Thursday, July 16, 2015

Welcome to our new column in the Bargain Book News (BBN).  The Southern Independent Booksellers Alliance (SIBA) and the Great American Bargain Book Show (GABBS) have partnered up in many ways that have proved beneficial but we mostly want all of our efforts to benefit booksellers and with that goal in mind, BBN has agreed to give us a little space in their popular, far-reaching newsletter.  So, a few housekeeping details.  We are hoping to benefit all booksellers but a few columns may be SIBA-specific and we’ll let you know up front when that’s the case.  We’d also like to invite booksellers to offer up guest posts if you have an idea or concept that you’d like to share, simply email wanda@sibaweb.com.

Today’s column will deal with gift items.  SIBA has maintained a list of great gifts for bookstores for many years. Now residing on Pinterest, you can visit the Pinterest Board again and again for ideas of things to sell in your shop. You can also send me items that are doing well for you, so that I can add to the board and share them with other stores.  Check out Gifts Galore for Bookstores!  The GABBS show is a great way to venture into the gift market as it is held over the same weekend in the same location as the Atlanta Gift Mart and GABBS offers Field Trips for first-timers with seasoned gift buyers.

Here is what I have heard from stores about gift buying over the years: 

·         Look for small minimums.  You don’t want to commit a ton of dollars to a single item. 

·         Work with sales groups.  Much like commission groups, they carry lots of companies in their bag and you can sample across companies on the same minimum. 

·         Remember you are buying wholesale and the retail cost will be more.  It is easy to get caught up when you can buy something for $6 but remember you will want your customer to pay upwards of $12. 

·         Start small.  Buy a few items and see how they do. 

·         Watch your turns and replace slow moving items with something new and mark those items down.  What’s so wonderful about gifts is you can mark that $12 items down to $9.99 and still make a profit.

·         Talk to other booksellers.  Use your regional or the ABA’s forums and listservs to ask other booksellers or simply email your bookselling friends in other regions or states and see what’s moving where they are, and what companies they like. 

·         Don’t forget impulse buys.  Put items like chocolate and magnets near the cash register.  Don’t sell anything for less the $1.  Make sure there is something to shop for while folks are waiting in line to give you their money.

·         Look local.  Check with your local artisans for items that would work well in your shop.  It’s a great way to connect with community and support the local art scene.

If you are not ready to plunge into the gift market in store see about affiliating with someone on-line and putting some items on your website that can be ordered online and you will get a small percentage of sales.  This is a good way to “test” for items that would be popular with your customers.

This post has not been tagged.

Share |
PermalinkComments (0)
 
Page 2 of 2
1  |  2
Community Search
Sign In
Login with LinkedIn
OR
Sign In securely
Calendar

1/9/2018 » 1/22/2018
Circle of Sites: Under a Cloudless Sky by Chris FAbry

1/23/2018 » 1/29/2018
Circle of Sites: The Last Suppers by Mandy Miculencak

1/30/2018 » 2/5/2018
Circle of Sites: All Things Bright and Strange

2/6/2018 » 2/12/2018
Circle of Sites: Sycamore by Bryn Chancellor

2/14/2018
Inventory Activism with Kimberly Daniels, The Country Bookshop, and Erica Merrell, former owner of