Bookmarks, fridge magnets, pens – if you can’t wait to order objects that display your cover art or announce your authorial name, you aren’t alone. “Swag,” as these tangibles are known, signals to oneself and others that an author has “arrived.”
It serves several other time-honored purposes within the publishing world:
- Can be used to reward loyal readers and contest winners.
- Forms a low-cost method of advertising. Some feel this is more important than ever as e-readers and declining bookstore space erode physical cues which would otherwise prompt a book’s purchase. (Namely, the display of cover art.)
- Provides another income stream if extended into successful merchandising. (e.g. T-shirts, aprons, and mugs.)
In this post, I want to list some of the more creative promotional applications I’ve seen, then add a few fantastical suggestions of my own using WU contributors as guinea pigs. (Click on most enclosed images to see the larger version.)
1. Business Cards:
2. Some authors use trading cards to promote characters. [Read more…]