Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Field Trip #4: Product Fit and Placement

Ok, so your latest work-in-progress (WIP) features a new spin on an old fairy tale, danger, adventure, and all manner of mayhem.  It is completely different from anything you have ever written before and you really aren't sure of where it is going, let alone how to market it.

Today's field trip takes you to your favorite bookstore.

With an eye for marketing, I want you to take note of the following things:

  • How is the bookstore organized?
  • Where are the YA books placed in the store relative to the adult fiction? Inspirational? Home decor?
  • How are the latest books positioned in the store?
  • Which books are placed at eye level versus being placed lower on the shelf?
  • How are the end caps structured?  (End caps are the displays at the end of each row.)
  • What other non-book products are placed on the book displays? (These are the 'pull through' products.)
Where will you books be placed on the shelf?  Now that you are aware of your product placement, how can you use this information to design a better marketing campaign?

Morgan says: My latest WIP is a steampunk novel.  I plotted the story and started writing.  After consulting with some of my dear writing friends, I came to the conclusion that my story would fit well in YA.  This decision on product placement will help me formulate my marketing strategy.  Since writing steampunk YA is such a HUGE departure from anything I've written before, I've decided to take a new pen name for this project.  My product placement decision will have a ripple effect on other aspects of my writing career.  Note:  I started by plotting and planning a story that really got my blood pumping,  THEN I investigated where it would fit with regards to audience and genre.  Always start with a story you LOVE and everything else will eventually fall into place. 

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