We just noted that a new Jiff-e-Books personalized books dealer is donating $5 of each hard cover book sold to a school – not just any school, but to a school selected by the purchaser of the book at checkout. The dealer will then contact the school administrator to discuss paying the donation to the school. This sounds like a great way to get your foot in the door with school administrators and talk about doing fundraisers for them. At a time of financial hardship in our country’s schools, this is an excellent idea. It’s always exciting to see the new marketing ideas that our dealers dream up.
Archive for the ‘marketing’ category
Historically, the 3rd and and 4th quarters of the year see the strongest sales in personalized books and other personalized items. Now is the time to take a look and see what venues are available to you for selling your Jiff-e-Books personalized books. If you want to be in a mall for the holidays, now would be the time to start looking for the best deal you can find. The same is true for flea markets, arts and crafts shows, etc. Think of ways to get your books in front of the public and start laying the groundwork to make it happen.
Also, if you’ve been wanting to put up a website to sell your books, this would be a good time to get it set up so it will be running smoothly in the fall. If you have questions about setting up a site, please contact us and we will give you some advice.
If you’re looking for a way to advertise your personalized books and gifts inexpensively, try a free ad on Craigslist. If you have never advertised on Craigslist, it’s very easy to post an ad. All it takes to sign up is an email address. There is a category for books. You can post up to four pictures on your ad. You might pick up some customers who were just shopping for children’s books and who didn’t know about personalized books. (Be sure the word children’s is in your ad so it will show up if they search specifically for children’s books.) This is something to keep in mind for the next holiday selling season.
By now most everyone has heard about social networking and how it is great for business. Some jump into it and others have a vague idea that they should engage it it but don’t know how. One thing to know: social media works. You can begin by setting up a Facebook personal page and a business page. (You have to have a personal page to have a business page.) Once they are set up you need to become a “fan” of your business page. Invite customers and people you know to become fans of your business page.
Your business page is not a place to blatantly try to hawk your personalized books and other personalized items: it’s a place for conversation where you can establish yourself as someone who is knowledgeable about the industry. If your customers and contacts follow you it can naturally lead to sales down the road. It has to be dynamic, though – you can’t just create a business page and forget it. You must spend time whenever you can to help build your presence and your following.
For help on setting up a Facebook business page, do a search on it and you’ll find videos and articles about how to get started.
A good way to increase your business is to let people know that you are in business. This sounds like a “Duh” statement, but consider this: in your everyday activities you likely come in contact with a lot of people who are potential customers, people who don’t know you are in the personalized book business unless you tell them. If you don’t have business cards, get some! You can use Microsoft Publisher. Choose a business card template, customize it for your business, and print the cards on preprinted, microperf stock you get from any office supply store. Print out 10 per page, and burst them apart. Total cost: just a few dollars for the card stock. Give your cards to the clerk at the dry cleaners, to the hair stylist, anybody you meet. All of these people need to buy children’s gifts from time to time, so why not one of your personalized books?
Our Brochure Printer CD also prints unlimited Easter Letters and Santa Letters. If you have this software, think about how you’re going to promote sales for Easter this year. Easter Letters cost almost nothing and can be sold for a nice profit or given away as an incentive to purchase a book. Another idea is to use them as a low-priced fundraiser item.
For years we have had dealers contract with hospitals to provide personalized baby books to new mothers. Recently we learned that one of our dealers (actually a husband and wife) volunteer at a children’s hospital. As part of their volunteering, they donate books to sick children. The hospital does not allow them to solicit book sales, but the parents come to them and ask to buy books. They are doing a great service by volunteering and they are selling books as a by-product.
Recently an enterprising Jiff-e-Books dealer contacted a daycare center and made a mini book for each child in the center. The dealer’s contact information was printed on the mini book covers. The daycare center then gave the books to parents free of charge. This was good public relations for the daycare center, plus it gave every parent a personalized book for their child that had the dealer’s contact information so that they could order more books.
This is the response I got from a distributor when I noticed she was selling a lot of books and asked her what she concentrated on in her marketing: “I’m focusing in schools and as a party’s keepsakes, but something that has really helped me so much is the ‘mouth-to-mouth publicity’. Besides, right now all my attention is in this business, because I don’t have a job, I have an 8 and a 2 year-old girls, and I like the idea of this home based business to spend more time with them. It has really been great, so I take this chance to thank you for having this great idea, for sharing with others, and for giving me the opportunity to learn, and to love this business!!”
Our industrious licensee in Ireland has gotten Santa’s Secret Helper featured in a prominent toy catalog. With an attractive full-page ad for this favorite personalized book title, we think that very strong 4th quarter sales will ensue. Good job getting into the catalog!