In-person events for me often involve book signings. Getting out and meeting people is invigorating, and a great way to garner new fans. I've done a number of them at both bookstores and other events, and I've learned a few things about making any live, in-person event from a book signing to a craft fair both enjoyable and productive. Below are some tips for having a successful in-person event or book signing.
1. Stand up. It's easy to sit down and hide behind the table and your books or sale items. If you want to meet people then you need to stand up and make yourself seen.
2. Engage with people. Don't wait for people to come to you. Ask questions, make small talk, and smile. You don't have to be pushy or get in people's faces but you do need to be outgoing, friendly and willing to approach people.
3. Give people something to take away. People love free stuff. Give them something to remember you by. I hand out postcards with tea bags attached to them, and I offer these goodies before people can even ask for them. It's a good way to start conversations and engage with potential readers. Vistaprint is a great source for postcards and other paper promotional items
4. Dress the part. Look nice and you will exude an aura of confidence that will encourage others, and yourself. If you feel confident then you will be better able to do the first 3 steps.
5. Recruit Similar Writers or Business People. If you can, recruit other writers or people with similar products to do the event with you. This will encourage their fans to attend too and you can cross promote. The more the merrier!
I hope you find these tips helpful for making your next book signing or in-person event a success. Check out some of my books to see what I have signed at various bookstores.
For more writing and sales advice check out my other blog posts here and here.