Authors ask me all the time: How can I get my book into Costco? To tell you the truth, it’s really not that complicated. But let’s look at the different ways that Costco stocks product:
Nationally: In order to be considered for national in-store distribution, you need to pass several (many) checks and your book needs to go to their book buyer who is super particular about what she buys for the stores. Product needs to move fast in Costco which is why you may see something one week but not the next. Books that are given national distribution meet a certain criteria - most of it having to do with sales and movie tie-ins. If your book doesn’t meet this criteria, take heart. There are other options.
Traditional thinking has a powerful undertow. Well-meaning friends, colleagues or even family members may discourage you from “rocking the boat.” But in today’s rapidly changing marketplace, holding steady really means falling behind. Move, evaluate, adapt, strategize and move again. Act like a professional boxer as you bob and weave, looking for weak points in your adversaries’ strategies on which to launch your competitive attack.
If you’ve ever had a review removed from Amazon you know how frustrating that can be. I’ve spoken to some authors who lost one and others who lost dozens. Each time it’s assumed that Amazon is the devil and that they get a certain amount of enjoyment from just randomly pulling reviews. While I was pretty certain this wasn’t true, I decided to call Amazon Author Central and get to the bottom of this.
The rep there was helpful and clear about their guidelines. Let’s look at a few:
The most expensive part of book publishing and marketing is a costly mistake. You can avoid some errors through experience, which in itself can be costly. Or, you can hire a coach (consultant, advisor, mentor) to steer you through the marketing maze and minimize slip-ups that can have significant impact on your budget.
Those who seek advice and those of us who give it can work together to solve your marketing problems. However, a coaching relationship is not a one-and-done transaction, a singular event with the dispensing and accepting of wisdom. It is best utilized as a collaborative process, a mutual striving to better understand your unique challenges and craft the best path forward. This process has five stages.
Home-shopping networks (QVC, HSN) reach millions of people every day with information on a wide variety of products, including books. Before you try to reach these buyers, consider your books’ salability on television. Does your book …
Publishers want to increase sales with new books and new ways to market them. Yet in practice they wait for authors to submit manuscripts and then sell the published books through bookstores and online. The quest for innovation is lost to habit and tradition.
It doesn’t have to (and shouldn’t) be that way. There is a reliable, systematic process for developing new, different and more successful ways to publish profitably and simultaneously grow your business. The objective is to close the growth gap --- the area between where you are now and where you want to be. There are four basic steps in this process.
We all want to make a good first impression when calling on a sales prospect for a large book order. An order for thousands of books could be at stake. So the pressure is on you, and that alone could cause you to make a bad first impression. But there are other reasons, and some are beyond your control. The most expeditious thing to do is to control the impression you make on buyers. But if you don’t, you may be able to correct it. Here are Ten Ways to Make the Right Impression.
At Bowker, we sell ISBNs. So we get a lot of questions about them. We've collected the ones that seem to be most useful to folks calling or emailing us.
Is Bowker the only place I can get an ISBN?
Bowker is the US ISBN Registration Agency. Each country has its own ISBN Registration Agency, as part of the ISBN standard ratified by ISO. If you are in the US, your ISBNs come from Bowker.
I just got my ISBN. Now what do I do?