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Tuesday, February 19, 2013

TOPIC: Marketing & Promotion - Bookmarks

APOLOGIES - Joss Ware was scheduled for today but due to deadline commitments she's been unable to visit. We'll catch up with her on a later date.

Having talked to many book sellers over time, one of the promotional items they request from authors and publishers is bookmarks. Readers enjoy receiving and collecting them.

I know I keep those put out by my favourite authors, particularly if they have a picture of the book cover or characters and dates for book releases.

And, if gauging by the number of requests that come over my writing loops, authors are interested in finding places that make bookmarks. So, I'm happy to share what I've done along these lines. 

Most of my promotional items come from Vistaprint. I LOVE Vistaprint! And while they don't have a bookmark product I've converted one of their other products to serve this purpose.

I used their oversized postcards (not the standard sized postcards). With a bit of time and tweaking I can fit three per card.

Prior to designing what I wanted though,  I gathered together some bookmarks from stuff I'd collected over conferences or had sent to me with book orders etc. I picked what I liked from them and designed the features to suit me. A couple of must-put-on's - website, ISBN # & publishing house - that way regardless a reader can find me or my book on the net. I also wanted my back cover blurb.

One of things I discovered the hard way - just be careful if you put something on the back that it's the same direction at the front otherwise it'll be upside down. It does take some fiddling putting in the info, aligning it and making it all fit properly as you're working side-on but it's worth the time you spend on it.

When they arrive you'll have to guillotine them yourself - they cut to 4.5cm x 21.5cm width & length, so make sure the back and front pictures/text all fit in the width. It's fiddly to do but possible.

I chose a solid colour template - back for my design. For the pictures headshot pictures I used on the back I cropped the book covers.
Front Side

Front side - font I used was Humanist 521, size 9 (for the publisher, release dates, ISBN data down the bottom) & 10 (for quotes & book log lines).

Reverse side

Reverse side - font I used was Humanist 521, size 8 (for one of the blurbs) & 9 (for website & other blurbs) & 10 (for the title & book number).

As you can see I used bold and italicised text only on the front and some of the back. Plain text for blurbs. Makes it stand out more than plain text.

Signing up to open an account at Vistaprint is free. And as I said before, it will take some fiddling to set up the bookmark postcard - especially as you have to design it looking at it sideways - but it's worth it in the end as you'll then have it on file in your Portfolio.

Just be aware that uploading the photo's of your covers could cost unless you strike a Vistaprint "free upload" offer. Unless you're in a rush to order bookmarks, wait until those freebie promo's are sent out then order them then.

Previous posts on Vistaprint products I've used:


  1. Thank you SO much for posting this!

    1. No problem, Misa. It's fiddly to begin with, as I said, but so worth it in the end. Good luck getting your bookmarks up and running!

  2. Great post Kylie!! Thanks so much for sharing!

  3. Another great promo/marketing post, Kylie. I got caught by the whole upside down thing with my first lot of postcards. I like to think it makes them collectors items, lol!!!