In this changing digital landscape, bookstores are facing stiff competition, not only from other stores but also from e-books and libraries. Business is seasonal with ‘back to school’ being one of the busiest seasons. Embracing these smart marketing techniques can get customers to frequent your bookstore more often, regardless of the time of the year:
Design creative bookmarks
Create well-branded bookmarks with your logo, to give to customers. When designed with proper branding and high-quality paper, bookmarks can be useful bookstore marketing tools. Bookmarks should include a listing address, website, social media page and any other additional information that markets your bookstore business.
High-quality printing materials are long lasting; hence your customers will use the bookmarks for a long time until they wear out. The bookmarks will remind the customers of your bookstore every time they see it.
Consider upgrading your bookstore with new technology. Most big box stores have renovated their stores to stay modern. Therefore, it is advisable to add computers and flat screens around the store to draw the right demographic to your business. As consumers are becoming more tech-savvy, free Wi-Fi hotspots in bookstores can help attract more customers. Free internet brings customers in, and they will most likely buy something.
Also, strategically place screens to feature interviews with authors, movies made from your book collections or author interviews and other stories. Remember to keep the sound very low, so that it does not disrupt the people who may be reading. You can also provide headphones for listening to extract from the books.
Many Independent bookstores nowadays attract more customers through the use of social media networks. Instagram and Facebook offer a significant opportunity for bookstore marketing. Integrate your print marketing campaigns with social media to connect with your customers.
You can write press releases highlighting notable books, new entries, and company profile complete with attractive photos. Through Facebook and Instagram, you can post shorter updates and messages that can be seen by your followers.
Social media also offers an avenue for contests and giving lucky winners discounts or book prizes.
Customer events are effective ways to entice new prospects to your bookstore. Hold contests to help sell particular books. Events could include book signings with well-known authors who can make their followers come into the store. Book clubs, children’s story time, book exchanges and book meetings can also help market your book store to more people, leading to sales.
Today, even small and independent bookshops require a website. You can use your website to promote events and sell books. Share blog posts from your website through social media too. If you are not sure exactly what type of website will be best for you, Ellipsis Marketing can help you design and build one. Ellipsis Website program offers your business a domain and mobile friendly web page designs.
Search Engine Optimization (SEO)
Be sure to apply the basics of SEO if you have a website so that you can be appear at the top of google searches for your location. With SEO, you make it easy d for locals to discover your bookstore.
Use your website to get your bookstore in web searches. Write compelling content that other sites will link to. When many people share your content, Google and other search engines will rank you higher, making you reachable to your target audience.
Enter into partnerships with local charity or organizations that receive grants to purchase books. Donate books to schools within your target demography or partner with a non-profit organization for an in-store event.
Donations, Giveaways, and discounts can help you built credibility with your local community, increase sales, at the same time help support a local charity campaign.
Bookstore coffee shop
Consider setting up a coffee shop beside your bookstore. This gives bookworms an opportunity to purchase their favorite books and discover new collection as they enjoy a hot cup of coffee. This combination appeals to coffee lovers as well as bookworms. Therefore, bookstores need all the extra effort they can get from coffee shops.
We hope these tips can help in your bookstore marketing. All the best!