This has been one of those days. I’ve been wracking my brain (which can be kind of scary), trying to think of a new topic for a post. Nothing came to mind (which is even scarier).
Then I thought about yesterday. My daughter and I went out to lunch and had a sweet, funny and polite waitress. I left her one of my Thank You cards. You might wonder what that is. It’s a business card that I make myself. On one side it says, “Thank You for your courtesy and service.” At the bottom of the card there’s an arrow that points to the side, making people want to turn it over. On the backside it says, “Marja McGraw Mysteries” and has my website address.
The Thank You card has surprised me on occasion. Once, some time ago, a waitress actually chased me out to the parking lot to thank me for thanking her. True story.
I also found some great pens. They look like brushed metal and they have a flashlight in the top. I pass those out frequently, and sometimes leave one with the Thank You card. They have Marja McGraw Mysteries and my website address embossed on them.
Yeah, yeah. Someone out there is thinking, “Okay, so what’s your point?”
My point is, promotional items can help as much as promotion on the Internet. I’ve tried several different things, but these two seem to work the best. I’ve told someone I appreciate them, and I sometimes back it up with a gift of the pen.
I tried some small calendars, maybe 3” x 5”, but those didn’t seem to draw much interest. I’ve tried bookmarks, but they wear out and get thrown away. But pens? People look at them every time they use them. I’ve given pens to the UPS delivery guy, the woman working behind the counter in the pharmacy, neighbors, receptionists, doctors and a woman in line behind me at the store. I got some great letter openers, but unless someone is sitting behind a desk, most people aren’t interested. All of the items I’ve tried have my name, a reference to mysteries, and my website address on them.
I often come across as an outgoing woman. In all honesty, I’m not. It’s taken age and experience to bring me out of my shell. Well, that and working in law enforcement. Those guys don’t put up with “shy”.
I occasionally give someone a complimentary book in the hopes they’ll enjoy it and spread the word. One time I was at the beauty shop and an elderly couple came in. My stylist introduced us because the woman was an avid reader. I gave her a book and you’d have thought I’d handed her a hundred dollar bill. I found out later that she and her husband didn’t have much, and she appreciated the gesture more than I could have imagined. It turned out she told everyone who’d listen about my book – not just that she enjoyed it, but that it had been a gift.
Maybe you can’t afford to give books away, and I can’t either. However, on rare occasions, it’s worth it in the long run.
If you’re thinking about In Person promotion, think outside the box. Think up something memorable. Steal my idea about the Thank You cards. I probably stole the idea from someone else, but I can’t recall who at the moment.
And if something works? Keep doing it, and when possible, add to it.
A woman recently bought ten of my books and asked me to sign them and mail them to her friends. I included one of the pens in each package. I heard that the friends were calling this woman even before they read the book because they were so impressed with the pens. (I sure hope they like the book, too.)
I’ve only talked about three steps in the promotional trail here, but you can come up with more. Tell us about them. What works for you?
Until next time, remember that even a verbal Thank You can go a long way. It makes a difference when someone knows we appreciate them.
CLICK HERE to visit Marja McGraw’s website
CLICK HERE for a quick trip to Amazon.com
I’ve had a few reports that reading “Choosing One Moment – A Time Travel Mystery” has brightened a few readers’ days. Need a lift? Give it a try. And Thank You!