For any author, this website is a gold mine of promotional items - you name it, they probably have it. And best of all, they run "freebie" product sales, where you only pay for postage.
Used wisely, and sticking to a budget (see previous post titled Promotion & Marketing), you can stock up on useful items to compliment your giveaways or make up surprise swag packs to send out while on blog tours etc.
One warning though, Vistaprint can be addictive! :-)
And to balance that out, one piece of advice - make sure the items you purchase are useful or practical. Don't waste money by purchasing something a reader will throw away at the first opportunity. Magnets are winner all round - practical, useful, visible, pretty and timeless.
Here are some of the items I designed and had made up, all were chosen from the "freebie" stock deals Vistaprint sends out regularly - designs are limited, so sometimes I had to choose from what was available and match it to my website brand as best I could. I also spread out my purchases over several months. Special deals for various products occurred at different times too.
|Book banners (small)|
I've used these at library visits, book signings and other promotional events.
So I went with book plates, which were just Visaprint address labels. I removed all text from the address boxes and got them sent to me blank. I sign them and post them off separately.
|Door magnets (small)|
I've given them away at any visit, signing, to friends and acquaintances or as surprise swag to readers (particularly those who followed my blog tour as a "thank you for your loyalty" gesture).
I sent them out to bookstores, libraries and blogs.
|Back of postcards|
I handed them out at author talks, library visits, even put some at the local general stores for people to take.
|Rack Cards (front)|
The longer format on the back gave me the chance to add more detailed book review quotes. It also allowed me to fit both books on the front.
|Rack Cards (back)|
Sticky notes, business cards, notepads, keyrings - all used as giveaway swag.
I just deleted the address and replaced it with the phrase, my website address and my name & brand line.
The key ring and notepads are for special giveaways or contests run on my blog.
|Lawn sign (small)|
These I lend to libraries and bookstores to advertise upcoming events. They can be placed in windows or displayed on notice boards.
Business cards - I turned one of Vistaprints standard business cards into a "With compliments & thank you" card. I hand it out with everything I giveaway.
I included the imprint line, a book reviewer quote and website address on the front.
On the back the title, series name, blurb, release date, ISBN numbers, and website address again.
I add them to any envelopes or packages I send out ie. giveaways.
Flyers - special one off's. Kept simple in text to advertise a coming event.
I posted them up on noticeboards in the local communities.
The most frequently used/sent out items so far are magnets (all sorts), book postcards, my modified "With compliments & thanks you" business cards, and the address labels I converted to book plates.
So, now repeat after me - Vistaprint is my new, best friend!