The Basics of Marketing to Borders

September 2002
by by Laurie McBride, New Vendor Acquisitions, Border

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and Cynthia Frank, President, Cypress House

There’s a place for titles from small and independent publishers in the big bookstore chains, and marketing your title to them may be easier than you think. The larger chains (Borders, Barnes & Noble, and Books-a-Million) represent well over one-quarter of retail bookstore sales in the United States. In some cases, a strong regional title can generate enough sales and interest to be appropriate for national chain store placement.

From Borders’ point of view, if your book is for the general trade market, you should consider working with them as well as the independent stores. Proceed on the grounds that they might give your book nationwide exposure and the opportunity for higher sales. Currently Borders Group consists of more than 370 Borders Books and Music stores, 820 Waldenbooks stores, and 23 international stores.


First Moves

When preparing your manuscript or book for review by any retailer, it pays to investigate the company and its value in your overall marketing and promotional plans. Make sure to allow enough time for product review and personal follow-up with your contact before expecting placement. In addition, when submitting to the chains, you should plan ongoing follow-up and account maintenance, just as you do with each of your general wholesalers and top accounts.


You must also be ready for significant returns. Borders is currently advising publi…IBPA Members – Click here to view the full article (login required).

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