Thursday, November 29, 2007

Promotional Bookmarks--veinglory

So, on the weekend I will post something about whether erotic romance and romance are separate genres (Thanks for the idea, Jill Noelle). But I haven't decided what I think about that yet, so today I am posting about promotional bookmarks.

Yesterday I opened a package full of books and out fell six bookmarks, a cover flat, a fridge magnet and a... thing. I looked at the bookmarks and my first thought was that whoever designed them, all of them, put a lot of energy into making flashy advertising but they didn't seem to be too terribly worried about making a nice bookmark.

Because that's what they are meant to be, right? But all I see is a half page of advertising squeezed into a sixth of a page worth of space. They are all covered in words in small print (8 point?), colored on the front, black and white on the back: bestselling (on almost all of them) ... new voice ... fascinating ... sexy ... riveting ... blah blah blah blah

You know what would be nice? A pretty picture and a little less bombast. These are all going in the bin. Sorry. Why would I use use something cluttered with an average of about 100 tiny, hysterical, spammy words as a book mark? A pretty picture, genre, name, and a url, maybe. Even if there was adverting on one side and a pretty picture on the other, that would be okay too.

But how could it work well as an ad with less words? Well, for a start I might actually read them and remember what I read--I have been looking at these bookmarks for about 5 minutes now and having look away to type this post I literally couldn't tell you a single author name or title from any of them. Less really is more, if only because you can use a font size that doesn't give me a headache.

And secondly the bookmark would be more likely to be used. Want to know what my current bookmark looks like? Four beads on a piece of string and no words at all. It was a promo piece from Respendence Publishing that I picked up in March and eight months later I still remember which publisher it is from. Why? Because it's a really nice little bookmark.

And just in passing, a cover flat is just a cover with no damn book in it--thank you for signing it Miss Whoeveryouwere. A fridge magnet that isn't strong enough to hold a piece of paper to the fridge (I tried) is just damned annoying. It says 'I want my advertising in your house but I am not going to do anything for you in return'. And the 'thing' is apparently meant to hang on a door knob but it doesn't fit over mine, and all that is on it is some more very small print advertising for a book. I am genuinely baffled. Why would I want to hang that on my doorknob? The background color of that one is black so I couldn't even write something on it myself.

Does anyone out there have a nice bookmark, I mean a really *nice* bookmark that advertises their wares without looking like part of a technicolor want ads page? Email me a picture. If I like it I will do you a deal: I'll buy a copy of your book if you'll send me a hardcopy of the bookmark. Show me you can make a nice bookmark, then maybe I'll trust you to have also written a nice book.


Anne D said...

I've never been one for book marks, but I'd take a book mark or a postcard over a door hanger or cover flat any day of the week. But then people do collect the oddest things.

I'm thinking you need to shrinky dink your covers then put them on the end of a leather/beaded thong bookmark - that would be the bomb! You know, that's not a half bad idea. I think I might try find some shrinky dink stuff tomorrow and make a prototype.

bettie said...

Not to get all braggy--who am I kidding, I'm getting all braggy--I did a bookmark for Ann Aguirre that I think came out pretty damn good. Of course, she had a very lovely cover to start with. She blogged about it here.

Imp said...

Here ya go. My bookmarks are posted:


JMS Books LLC said...

I have two bookmarks, one for my series & one for just my site. They're both found here:

Jennifer McKenzie said...

Mmmm I've got two. One you'd hate because it has the blurb to my book and the cover.
The other one you'd probably like. Dead simple.

veinglory said...

It's all about my rampant opinion today :)

Do show, please? You might sell me a book (it's payday).

Anonymous said...

Ha, mine is the ultimate in simplicity. In fact, it may be too simple--I'm thinking possibly a review quote or something might improve it. Maybe you can let me know, Emily! :-) I did attach ribbons to some of them. The link to it is here - . That's the front--the back just has a URL on it.

Anonymous said...

Suzanne Brockmann has a bookmark for her last two releases (Force of Nature and All Through the Night) that I particularly like. It has the whole series listed in order, and the covers for the last two books. It's also simple (IMO at least) and not cluttered because it's longer than most paperbacks, and about 1.5" wide.

Personally, I really like the idea of miniature covers with leather thongs as bookmarks. Mmmm... gotta plot now.

PS No wonder my earlier comment got eaten! I can't choose "other" anymore *pout*

Oh well *sigh*

azteclady here.

Anonymous said...

I have a beautiful bookmark that has the top bar from my website ( with just a little text: author's name, genre, URL. Beautiful color, with lovely silken tassels.

Maura Anderson said...

I mailed you the jpg of my bookmarks.

Anne D said...

Well, hell. Avery doesn't do the shrinky dink paper anymore, I'm going to have to find some online somewhere. I've got a been in my bonnet now, I'm determined to make one now