If you missed yesterday's post on book signings, specifically where to have the best book signing possible, you'll also want to read this post. Today I'm going to talk the other ingredient to a successful book signing.
When it comes to selling books, besides having a terrific (perhaps even a 'non-book' place to sell your book), it's good to make sure the venue has great foot traffic. I have had sorrowful signings because there simply hasn't been enough people walking by my booth to sell much of anything.
On any given day you're going to have 'lookers,' 'buyers' and 'not interested' people strolling by for a little 'look see.' If there are only a few stragglers making their way to your signing, expect to sell very few books. When you consider that most folks have to see your book multiple times (some say 7) before they purchase it, it's no wonder that the numbers will really matter when it comes to sales.
If your booth is outside, and the day is stormy, that's another consideration, though one out of your control. I prefer getting a table inside to prevent the stress of last minute storms. A fine storm may still slow down the crowd a bit, but at least you'll not get rained on.
Consider the numbers who attend craft shows and other big events in your city. Think about the holidays and what your city does. Yes, some of the booth spaces are pricey, but there are others less so. Do some checking at least six to eight months ahead of time - many of these spaces will fill up fast.
Don't be afraid to ask questions. If you're unsure about how many folks attended the particular event you're interested in signing at, ask. Another option is to attend the event you're interested in one year, and if you like what you see, set up a booth space the next.
An important thing about doing a signing at any event is that you man the table at all times. Some events allow you to display your items, leave the event, and return later to restock. I have been to shows where the author has left the table, only to return with the same book count. You need to be at your table, not only to sign autographs for interested readers, but to speak about your book and answer questions that may not be able to be answered by simply reading the back cover.
You need to do all you can to get the word out about your book - and this means not being afraid to talk about it.