This morning, I gave away ten copies of my book Wildflowers of RiverPark. When I completed this book, a bit more than two months ago, I gave away a dozen copies. All totaled, this is more than $300 out of my pocket. But from the start of this project, I knew this cost would be on me and I chose to do it.
The first give-away was done by limited email invitation to a group of individuals, before leaving my employment at this business park. The response was strong; I had far more requests for the book than actual copies available. One friend refused a free copy and insisted on purchasing it!
This morning’s give away was deposited on coffee tables in lobbies. One of the companies in the park did not have a visitors’ entrance; the only way in was through a locked employees’ entrance. That probably means that there is no lobby or waiting room.
I gave one copy to a dental office across the street from the park. After explaining, to the receptionist, what the book was and that I was giving it for free, she was very appreciative. “Just leave it here on the table?” I asked. But a man sitting in the waiting room had overheard the conversation, stopped me, and reached out his hand. He wanted to read it immediately. (Perhaps he had already read all the magazines that were there.)
In small part, this is marketing. Somebody will see the book, visit my website, and that will plant the seed of some business opportunity in the future. In large part, this book was inside me and it had to come out. Sometimes we do what we do, for reasons that are intangible and difficult to articulate. And the smile on a person’s face when you give them a free book … is definitely rewarding.