Book Fair Marketing FAQ

1. What are the benefits of having my book at a trade show?

The very people who will buy or who can help sell your books attend trade shows. Trade shows represent a valuable opportunity to have your titles marketed to a very targeted audience. Additionally, they expose your work to people who may have no awareness about your book.


2. What can I expect from having my book displayed at a trade show?

All trade shows are different and can afford you different opportunities. For example, at state, regional and national library trade shows, you can expect to have your book seen by several levels of library staff, including those who select books for their individual libraries and library systems, who might also recommend your book to their patrons.


International shows provide an opportunity or your work to be seen by a broader audience who may provide leads towards translation rights sales, distribution deals, book sales, library acquisitions and much more.


Industry trade shows are not sales mechanisms, but marketing and lead gathering opportunities. Therefore they should be considered as part of a well-rounded marketing plan as a means to provide targeted exposure to a broad audience.


3. How will my book be displayed?

Through a partnership with NY-based Combined Book Exhibit (CBE) we are able to give you the chance to have your books displayed face out in their collection.


4. Who is Combined Book Exhibit (CBE)?

CBE is a company that, for 75 years, has been an outlet for publishers of all sizes to display their titles at trade shows around the world at a low cost. With such history comes seniority, resulting in prime exhibit location, a great reputation, healthy traffic, and the expertise to make sure your title isn't lost in the crowd - even in a large venue.


5. Why should I exhibit with Lulu and Combined Book Exhibit instead of on my own?

When you attend a trade show on your own, you are required to purchase booth space, purchase booth furnishings, pay each venue's fees for shipping, staff the booth, and it’s likely that if you are a new exhibitor you will receive a less than desirable location within the venue. Of course, if the show is not local, there will also be expenses for travel and lodging to consider. As part of the Lulu/CBE collective, you save all the money associated with attendance, while being part of a well known collective located in a prime location alongside other small independent presses and, in many cases, larger reputable publishers like Random House, Harper Collins, and others.


6. Can I attend a book trade show?

Because of the high volume of participating publishers and authors in each exhibit, we cannot provide our participants with badges for entry. 


Please note: If you are attending the show on your own, out of fairness to those who could not be accommodated, you will be asked to not use the CBE booth for solicitation of your book.


7. Does Combined Book Exhibits take orders on my behalf at these shows?

As these trade shows are generally “industry only” events, they tend to be mostly information gathering opportunities. As such, it is rare for any orders to be taken. On the rare occasion this may occur, CBE will be happy to take the order information and pass it along to you, however, it is more likely that CBE will direct the interested party to contact you with the information you provided for your catalog listing.


8. How many books will I sell at a book fair or trade show?

As with any marketing service, there is no guarantee on book sales. Book fairs are a proven method of marketing a book. Book buyers attend book fairs to find new titles. Your book fair marketing should be an element in your annual marketing plan.


9. Why do I have to ship the books myself?  Why aren’t they included as part of the service?

Lulu’s marketing services are open to all authors and some are not published with Lulu. Additionally, many authors have a dedicated number of books they use for marketing and simply mail those in. If you do not have copies of your books, you can order the copies and ship them directly to CBE from your Lulu account. 


10. How can I learn more?

For more information on book fair packages go to Marketing Services, submit your contact information, and a services consultant will contact you with more information. US residents may call direct at 1 (888) 265-2129.

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