Tuesday, May 27, 2014

Read Books, Earn Valuable Prizes

St. Martin's Press will send you an excerpt of an upcoming book each and every weekday morning, for free.

They want you to get a taste of what's coming so that when the book is released, you'll run out and buy it.

Does it work? Not in every case, because not all of us attracted to free things can afford to pay for the rest of that thing when it's available. By the time the book that was previewed by St. Martin's Press "Read It First" programme reaches the local library, it's been so long since I read the opening pages that I don't recall the plot or the characters.

The fact that the publisher continues to support "Read It First" suggests that it might be working. Or not. Are there focus groups or surveys that ask readers if they're going to buy the new book after they've read the first twenty-five pages? Is there a way to find out?

St. Martin's Press marketing department is nothing if not creative.

The publisher is going to launch a new scheme to attract readers, which it finds are largely of the female persuasion. The ladies love the shopping, right, and they love bargains of all sorts.

St. Martin's Press and Swagbacks are joining forces so that you, lovely lady reader, can read books and earn valuable prizes.

You sign on with Swagbucks to become a member so they can keep track of your reading. You earn points as you peruse the SMP offerings of book excerpts, author interviews, and whatever the marketers believe will entice you. There will be an entire channel dedicated to reading. It will be called the Read Channel, of course. No need to get fancy and confuse the audience.

You do what Swagbucks tells you to do in regard to SMP titles and promotions, and you gain points. Follow orders frequently and your points will accumulate, until you've built up enough to be given a gift card.

A gift card to be used towards the purchase of the book you sampled and liked?

Not exactly. But you could earn your way to an Amazon gift card, which is grand if you're not concerned about Amazon's brutish tactics to bring Hachette Book Group to heel. And your local independent book seller isn't helped along by a gift card redeemable at the behemoth that is driving them out of business.

But it's all about selling St. Martin's Press titles through whatever venue is open to them.

So let's get reading, ladies. There is a Starbucks gift card in your future if you obey Swagbuck's commands.

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