Children’s book publicity includes many specialized promotional opportunities. If you’re an author, it’s wise to get underway with marketing as your book is released. While it’s an excellent idea to plan events that reach young readers, always keep in mind that kids don’t buy their books. As a result, it’s vital to reach parents, grandparents, teachers, and librarians with news of your book. It takes planning and finesse, but when you market to the right groups and become popular, children’s books tend to sell well for many years. Each new generation brings a group of readers appropriate for the book.
One of the most obvious avenues for children’s book marketing is school visits. They’re a fun way to promote kids’ books, and if you’re a parent, begin at your child’s school. At many schools, the best contact is a librarian or media specialist to set up an event. Most are reachable by email and are members of email lists for their school district or state. Because they are often connected to other schools, you can look forward to recommendations if your event is well received. During your school visit, you can read your story, answer questions, and hand out materials about your website or blog.
Book awards specific to the children’s literature world provide valuable opportunities. For most, you need to submit an entry. If you’re lucky enough to be select as a winner, the long-term benefits can be significant. Award-winning books can be more easily promoted with online booksellers and covers adorned with award stickers for bookstore sales. Winning award is also an excellent basis for a press release to gain more widespread coverage of your book. Media often are more likely to give a children’s book coverage if it has won an award – and you’ll be known as an award-winning author forever.
Libraries are outstanding venues for tactful children’s book promotion. They are always receptive to new titles, and be elegant about your presentation, never use a hard-sell approach. An excellent way to begin is to donate a copy of your book to your local library. Most will take a particular interest in authors from their area. If you have an opportunity to get to know the staff, they will likely recommend your book to interested readers. It’s a valuable word of mouth promotion that will help you succeed.