Alona Fryman is the Director of Marketing Design at Bloomsbury and a veteran of the publishing industry with over twenty years of experience. As part of her role, she coordinates with the Bloomsbury operations, marketing, and editorial teams to keep everything up-to-date on Edelweiss and to add promotional assets and ads for book buyers to the site.
We chatted with Alona about the world of book marketing, what surprised her when she got started in publishing, and how she makes the most of Edelweiss in her role promoting books.
What is your role at Bloomsbury?
How long have you been working in marketing and promotions for books? Did anything about the publishing world surprise you when you got started?
I started working in book publishing in 1998 as a part time marketing assistant; full time June 1999 but I’ve always been a book promoter at heart. I don’t know if it’s possible for anyone to fully grasp any job until they’re doing it, so I think pretty much everything about book publishing sort of surprised me. Everyone knows about editors and maybe thinks about publicists and the art department but how many people think about production, managing editorial, sales, contracts, rights, and operations? I had no real idea about how many people are involved in producing books.
How has the landscape of book promotion changed during your career?
`Given their ubiquity, it’s a bit odd to recall that eBooks weren’t widely available at the time. While that isn’t obviously related to promotion, the idea that you could get a book into someone’s hand instantly (and not run out of stock)—rather than them going into a store, library, or wherever they might obtain a book—seems, to me, to be related to the rise in online promotion and the beginning of the shift from printed to all digital catalogs as well as more of a shift to online promotion overall.
Currently, how are you using Edelweiss in your role? How does the site help you get the word out about your titles?
My role is to add the catalog copy and promotional assets/ads for book buyers/stores to Edelweiss. I coordinate with the operations department as well as the marketing and editorial teams to attempt to keep everything up-to-date.
Which types of promotions do you typically book on the site? How far in advance do you start advertising your titles on Edelweiss?
We use banner ads a lot, they help call attention to a title and the fact that you can update them as many times as you want is very helpful. We’ve also run spotlights in emails. The timing for ads will differ but around 6 to 8 months prior to publication at least.
Do you have any tips or best practices for others on navigating advertising on Edelweiss?
Beyond book ahead, one tip is that the Edelweiss support and marketing teams are both very helpful if you ever get stuck or aren’t sure how to plan. I really like the new advertising center, especially since we found some new advertising options with the redesign.
What is the best part about working in publishing, especially in marketing?
Getting to read all the books.