Better Than Bookstores: Prime Channels for Selling Children’s Books

April 2006
by Florrie Binford Kichler

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I love bookstores. I shop in
bookstores. I’m in a bookstore every week without fail. Spending money in
bookstores is easy.

Making money with bookstores is
the challenge.

Most children’s book publishers do
need bookstores for sales and credibility. In my experience, however, the key
to a healthy bottom line is not relying on bookstores as the major source of
income—those pesky returns will get you every time.

Stepping outside the traditional
channel for selling children’s books can net you big rewards in terms of both
large and small nonreturnable sales. Nonreturnable—a lovely word. And
what about getting paid in 30 days instead of 60, 90, or more?

Now that I have your interest,
we’ll launch a four-pronged attack on some of those so-called nontraditional
channels, which include associations, book clubs, museums/historic sites, and
schools. As you’re considering possibilities for your own titles, continually ask
yourself:

Who is interested in reading my
book, and . . .

What do they belong to?

The Encyclopedia of Associations
(both a database and a print source) lists more than 100,000 membership
organizations. Odds are excellent t

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