Exhibitor at Book Festivals
I had never considered the idea of exhibiting at Book Festivals until I discovered the Bay Area Book Festival in Berkeley June 4th-5th 2016. Through networking and volunteering for the UN Women SF Chapter, I had the chance to connect with the organizer of the Bay Area Book Festival and luckily there were still some spots available as an exhibitor. I chose the option for Individual Author for $200 shared booth. I didn't know what to expect, but when you are a self-publishing author, every occasion is good to get some exposure. I ordered some copies of my book to sell and prepared some flyers with my bio and mission as an author. My husband is a talented designer (I know I'm lucky) so he created a banner for the occasion (see pics below). You can easily print the banner with VistaPrint for $20. Tyler has a great creative mind and he also suggested to use postcards as swag and inspire people to travel. This idea was perfectly in line with the topic of my travel memoir and with future projects. I found a stack of postcards from all over the world on eBay for $20. I was ready with my books, banner, flyers, business cards and cool swag. Before heading to the Festival I decided to wear clothes that could suggest my nationality: red, white and green, and I used a postcard from the Milan's cathedral (my birthplace) as a pin. This is just to give you some inspiration. Get creative! Remember to bring some change, tape and a pair of scissors to set up the booth.
Result of the Bay Area Book Festival:
-Total of 7 copies sold. I could have sold a couple more if I had the credit card reader so get a square reader to avoid missing sales.
-More than 70 people took flyer and business card.
-People loved the banner and the idea of the postcards. I received a lot of compliments and I definitely had a lot of exposure as an author.
I highly recommend authors to join a Book Festival. It's an incredible experience. You meet lovely people and you learn how to pitch your work in one minute. It doesn't matter how many copies you end up selling. The experience and exposure is priceless.
Thanks Bay Area Book Festival!