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This began as a collection of posts provided to the no longer Bargain Book News for all booksellers from SIBA, with love. But it is switching to a blog for the industry with news that we hope is valuable for the industry at large, from SIBA, with love.


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Visiting Spartanburg, Host City for #SIBA19's Discovery Show

Posted By Linda-Marie Barrett, Wednesday, May 15, 2019

SIBA’s Discovery Show in Spartanburg, SC is going to be extra special, with a full schedule of author events, educational programming, and gatherings where seeing old friends and making new ones is top of the list. SIBA's Wanda Jewell and Linda-Marie Barrett visited recently for a site visit, and met with Patricia Byrd of the Spartanburg CVB, Anne Waters, Meg Reid and Betsy Teter of Hub City Bookshop & Press, and the good folks at the Spartanburg Marriott AKA Discovery Show Central. 

The Marriott is in downtown Spartanburg, a walkable distance from restaurants, the book shop, and other beloved local attractions. The hotel is lovely, spacious, and well-appointed, featuring three restaurants, a bar, and a cafe. After the day’s activities you can settle in, schmooze, and connect with booksellers, authors, reps, and more. Here’s a peek at where you’ll be staying.

But you won’t want to stay in the hotel the whole time. Spartanburg-affectionately known as Hub City and Sparkle City- has so much to offer culturally. Come early as we’ll be offering a variety of things to do on Thursday, September 12, including a visit to Hub City Writers Project, and The Johnson Collection Gallery. Art lovers will also want to wander down to the AC Hotel and view the 40+ objects on view at the hotel—paintings, works on paper, sculpture and textiles—created by faculty members and students at the experimental arts enclave of Black Mountain College. The collection is really extraordinary, as is the hotel’s rooftop bar!

Word on the street is that SIBA’s 2019 Discovery Show is drawing a record number of booksellers, as Spartanburg is within driving distance of so many bookstores in NC, SC, VA, TN, and GA. We want you to be there, too. Here’s a link to find out more info and register.

Tags:  discovery show 

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Maximizing Success at the SIBA Discovery Show: Make Your Social Network Connections Early!

Posted By Linda-Marie Barrett, Tuesday, May 7, 2019

If you’re planning to exhibit at the upcoming SIBA Discovery Show, there are many ways you can make the most of opportunities the show provides to connect with booksellers. Set things in motion by making your social network connections early. Here’s a list of SIBA member Bookstores.  Go on Facebook/Instagram/Twitter, get to know them and like them. Say nice things about them and let them know you’ll be at the SIBA Discovery Show. This is such a great way to introduce yourself and maybe even set up an account in advance of the Show. Let them know you look forward to meeting or seeing them again. 


Tags:  discovery show  social media  tips 

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Maximizing Success at the SIBA Discovery Show!, Tip# 4: Create a Stand-Out Directory Listing

Posted By Linda-Marie Barrett, Friday, April 26, 2019

Your table reservation includes a 50-word listing for the print and online show directory. Attendees use the directory to prioritize their time on the show floor, so it's very worth taking your time to craft a stand-out listing. You don't need to include info they can find on Google, you need to provide information that will get booksellers to come by your booth. Highlight your author booth signings, show specials, prize giveaways, or perhaps a chance to learn a magic trick or receive a tarot reading. Be creative and get your message out there.

Need more than 50 words or want to place an ad highlighting award-winning titles, an event you're sponsoring at the show, or a very special happening at your booth? Check out our exhibitor tradeshow package  or contact for options. 


Tags:  Discovery Show  tips 

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Share Your Smarts with SIBA Booksellers!

Posted By Linda-Marie Barrett, Wednesday, April 24, 2019

Booksellers, authors, and other publishing industry colleagues sharing their best practices, creative insights, and life hacks is what makes SIBA's educational programming so valuable to members. If you'd like to be part of our educational programming at the #SIBA19 Discovery Show September 13-15 in Spartanburg, SC, we welcome your proposals. Although we can't guarantee your proposal will be selected for this event, it may be considered for future programming.  Please fill out this form and we'll be in touch. Thank you so much for your time and interest!


Tags:  Bookseller education  Discovery Show  eurekasiba 

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Maximizing Success at the SIBA Trade Show, Tip #3: Share the Good Times

Posted By Linda-Marie Barrett, Monday, April 22, 2019

Make Your Booth a Photobooth!

Booksellers love to document their Discovery Show experience on social media. Many of their followers are bookstore customers and other booksellers. You can build your brand as they build theirs by being a booth that’s fun to visit time and again for social media sharing. Consider creating a cool photobooth at your booth. Blow up a book jacket that features a space where booksellers can insert their face into the image (and story!). Or offer props (sparkly eyeglasses, carnival masks, top hat, etc.) to put on while holding up a fan or a broadside or some other prop that promotes you and is fun for them. Create an archway to stand under that’s festooned with your messaging in vivid and share-worthy ways. In other words, be creative and become a destination booth. Offer to take photos with their camera, but do take photos with yours, too, to share the good times with your followers.  



Tags:  discovery show 

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Maximizing Success at the SIBA Trade Show, Tip # 2: Become a Sponsor!

Posted By Linda-Marie Barrett, Monday, April 15, 2019

“We don't have a small amount of time or a small amount of money committed to fulfilling our mission. As a willfully independent publisher, our investment in the SIBA Discovery Show allowed us to not only achieve critical business results, but it enabled our authors and us to initiate conversations with booksellers that unite our mutual passion and purpose as literary citizens.” –Steve McCondichie, founder of publisher Southern Fried Karma and generous sponsor at our 2018 SIBA Discovery Show and 2019 SIBA in the Springtime,

Becoming a sponsor is a such a great way to raise your visibility and deepen connections with booksellers throughout the show.We invite your creative ideas for sponsorship opportunities, and we will work with your budget to find just the right thing.

Existing Opportunities:

  • Sponsor a bookseller! For just $1000 you can bring a bookseller to the SIBA Discovery show. Many booksellers just can’t afford to come, but would love the opportunity and will forever sing your praises for making this possible. This sponsorship covers a bookseller’s hotel, meals, travel, and other incidental expenses.

  • Show Sponsorship for less than $5,999 This level includes logo placement on our Discovery Show website and emails, special sponsor drape on all exhibit tables, an enhanced listing in the Discovery Show Directory, and a waiver of all author confirmation fees.

  • Premiere Sponsorship for $5,999 This level includes all of the above AND an exclusive event opportunity at the show valued at $4800 and one FREE exhibit table.

  • Inkreadible Sponsorship for $8,999: This level includes all of the above AND one year of unlimited bookseller-targeted advertising (eBlasts, galleys &  giveaways, newsletter banner ads, etc),TWO free exhibit tables, and the opportunity to deliver an education session at the Discovery Show

Additional Opportunities:

We love coming up with creative ways to make exhibitors stand out and connect with our booksellers. Here are some ideas, and we’d love to hear yours!

  • Put your company logo or your lead title on our official hotel key cards

  • Sponsor a coffee and pastry cart in the exhibit hall

  • Sponsor a meal inspired by recipes from your fabulous new cookbook

  • Sponsor an afterhours cocktail party

  • Sponsor the bus tour of surrounding bookstores

  • Offer promotional items to include in our Exhibit Hall welcome bag to bookseller attendees

  • Offer welcome bags for bookseller hotel rooms (bottle of water, granola bar, postcard of Spartanburg, for example)

Please contact Wanda to discuss what you’d love to do as a SIBA Show Sponsor!

Tags:  discovery show  Southern Fried Karma  Sponsorship 

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Maximizing Success at the SIBA Discovery Show!

Posted By Linda-Marie Barrett, Wednesday, March 27, 2019

Maximizing Success at the SIBA Discovery Show!

We’d love to see you at our SIBA Discovery Show in Spartanburg, SC in September. We’re hosting this year’s show in a city steeped in literary culture, with numerous indie bookstores close by in Spartanburg and Greenville, and many more within easy driving distance just over the border in NC, TN, and GA. Booksellers from across the south will attend to see what you and other publishers and non-book vendors have to offer their stores. Have you registered yet? Here’s a link to do that now

If you’re planning to exhibit at the upcoming SIBA Discovery Show, there are some things you can do to make the most of opportunities the show provides to connect with booksellers. Having a strategy in place to draw people to your booth is important to making the show a success for you. In the coming weeks, we’ll be offering some great tips we’ve learned over the  years.

Tip #1: Request a mailing list in advance of the show
Although it is difficult to obtain an attendee list before the event, if you are a member of SIBA you can request a mailing list of SIBA member bookstores at any time. The list includes both snail mail and email contact information. Use the list to communicate with booksellers in advance of the show. Reminding them of a booth signing or offering a small give-away they can pick up at the booth is an effective way to generate traffic to your exhibit space. Consider making appointments during show hours to meet them, hear what they need, and how you might meet those needs. Start connecting now to build relationships that will translate into winning opportunities for you and indie bookstores.


Tags:  Discovery Show 

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Let's Talk 40-second Pitch + Scavenger Hunt

Posted By Wanda Jewell, Monday, July 30, 2018

Let's Talk 40-second Pitch + Scavenger Hunt

If you haven't read Maximize Your Presence at #SIBA18, you should. Today we are going to marry #2 and #4 from that article's list: the 40 second pitch and the Scavenger Hunt.  Here's my 40-second pitch to potential vendors for The Discovery Show:

"Certainly exhibiting at the SIBA Discovery Show is an investment, but if it's your desire to connect with indie booksellers in the south and build relationships that translate into repeat sales, the SIBA Discovery Show is the place for you.  We've learned that our bookstores have contact with 10,000 readers per week, on average.  What does that mean for you?  A meaningful contact with a single bookseller at our show can result in meaningful contact with over 130,000 readers per season.  We know books and booksellers. We have access to the smartest bookstores in the country. We have your back.  We want to help you sell your books."

Become intimate with your pitch.  You want to come across conversational, as though the words are coming to you as you are speaking them. Focus on the single most important information you want to impart.  I'm happy to help you formulate your pitch.  You can reach me at 803.994.9530.

Now, to the Scavenger Hunt.  The Scavenger Hunt is designed to allow you to connect with your booth visitors in a meaningful way.  First, your item should be affordable and should connect to your brand in some way.  Here's an example:  Let's say SIBA is going to exhibit at a Library Show with the express purpose of getting more librarians to attend The Discovery Show.  I'd start by ordering library cards and each card would have the same information with a book titled: Southern Indie Bookselling, Author: Reeden Wright, Due Date would be the dates of the show, and the Issued to: would be "Smart Librarian"; and I would also invest in an ink stamp with the SIBA logo and the words "Check it out", and stamp each card.  Our scavenger hunt item would be: library card for book by Reeden Wright

And then when a librarian approached our booth asking, "Do you have a chocolate covered ant, or a blue flip-flop, or a library card for a book by Reeden Wright?", I'd answer, "We do.  We also have the largest book industry show in the south.  I used to be a librarian myself, and I'd love to share with you the many ways attending our show could benefit you, your library, and your patrons.  We have over 100 writers attend our Discovery Show as well as booksellers and publishers.  The Southern Indie Booksellers Alliance is home to The Discovery Show.  I hope you will check it out." And then I'd hand over the library card.

I hope you'll spend some time on both your pitch and your scavenger hunt item.  They could make all the difference.  I look forward to seeing you at The Discovery Show in Florida in September.  



Tags:  books  discovery show  exhibit  pitch  scavenger hunt  trade show 

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Print is Dead. Long Live Print.

Posted By Wanda Jewell, Tuesday, July 17, 2018

Print is Dead. Long Live Print.

SIBA prints a directory every year for The Discovery Show. This directory is filled with all of the info that assists everyone in finding their way once onsite.  We also send any extras out to booksellers who missed the show in hopes it will inspire them to attend in the future.  This years' theme is #MakeYourMark and I invite you to Make Your Mark at #SIBA18 with a print ad in the Show Directory.  The Directory kicks off recognizing all of our sponsors.  (You can join that list as well if you'd like, just reach out to  The Directory also lists all of the Exhibitors and their show listings, the Schedule of Events and much, much more.  If you can't get to the show for some reason I cannot imagine, the Directory is an affordable way to get your name in front of booksellers.  Book your print ad today!  The deadline to reserve advertising is August 1.

Here's the details:


Design specs: 

Ads should be CMYK, tiff or pdf files. Minimum 300 dpi.

$600 - full page: 5 x 8 inches 
$600 - full page with bleed: 5.5 in width x 8.5 in height, bleed of .125 inch on all sides.
$500 - half page 5 x 4 inches (no bleeds allowed)
$400 - quarter page: 2.5 x 4 inches (no bleeds allowed)

Logos: 2x2 minimum
Listings: 50 words max.


Listings: August 1
Advertising: August 1

Send files to:

Tags:  advertising  books  discovery show  print 

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Data Wins the Day.

Posted By Wanda Jewell, Tuesday, June 26, 2018

Data is power, it seems, and SIBA is seeking to provide you with a wide range of data.  We recently looked at our ABACUS South data, our ad stats across our social networks, websites, and email, plus surveyed our stores, and compiled it all for you. It's all we could imagine you'd want.  Here it is all in one place:

Advertising Stats for SIBA Products  - This is where we keep the most up-to-date info, and we can provide impression data and click thrus to any advertiser upon request within six months of launch.

Press Kit - This two page document hopefully assists in ROI for SIBA and the Discovery Show.

Bookstores - Here's a list of our member bookstores.  Place your cursor on the store name and you can link to their social networks and email.

Put Your Money Where Your South Is! is our brochure of advertising opportunities.

Here's how we mark up the Southern Indie Bestseller List:

 A SIBA Okra Pick  | Southern Book Prize winners and finalists! |  Special to the Southern List  Printable versions (PDF): Hardcover | Paperback | Children's.

And check out this list for books that are only on the Southern list, and no other: Special to the Southern List!

Got authors appearing at indie stores in the south? Search to confirm they are on the calendar, and if not, let the store know.  These are the events that get promoted in Lady Banks Commonplace Book newsletter each week to 60,000 readers.

Hope this gives you lots of data to devour.  Let us hear if you have any questions or data we should pursue and have not.  Happy data crunching.

Tags:  Authors  booksellers  buy  discovery show  Small Data  writers 

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