Library Insider: Measuring Results

Janet Grant

Blogger: Janet Kobobel Grant

Location: Books & Such main office, Santa Rosa, Calif.

Let’s imagine several months from now that you’ve not only invested in the database from Library Insider, but you’ve also taken the Behind the Stacks training. You’ve implemented library market expert Judy Gann’s advise on how to approach libraries, and you’ve sent out your material. Now what?

Wouldn’t  it be great to know your efforts made a difference? One of the frustrating aspects of book promotion is that you can spend a lot of money and a lot of time but never know for sure if it paid off. With Library Insider, the results are measurable.

On the Library Insider home page is a video trailer that highlights the various aspects of the program. In that trailer, you’ll see a copy of a report that was created for author DiAnn Mills. Also, on the testimonials page you’ll see endorsements from a number of authors (who received Judy’s training before it was formalized into Library Insider). Several of the authors have specific numbers they can point to that show the Library Insider plan works.

That’s because, for an additional fee, we can check how many libraries in the area you selected carried a specific book or books you promoted to the acquisitions librarians. Then, after you do your promotion, a report will be sent telling you how many libraries now carry that book. Voila! You have a before-and-after picture of how well Library Insider worked.

Today’s Prizes

Here are the prizes for today: jewelry for the bibliophile. A pewter and copper book lady pin, pewter book earrings and a Scrabble® tile “Read” pin, plus a collection of books in an I Love Books Bag.

Or, if you’d rather forego the jewelry, a $25 Starbucks card will be substituted.









To win, just write a comment in the Comments section. Well, a meaningful comment would be good rather than just “hi.” The winner will be picked at random.

The Grand Prize

Don’t forget, you have until 8 A.M. CDT today to enter for our grand prize of a 50% discount for a three-month subscription to Library Locator. Just write a short essay telling us how a library positively affected your life and email it to [email protected] with the subject line: “How a Library Touched My Life.”

16 Responses

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  1. Lance Albury says:

    Janet, if you hadn’t sold me before, you sold me now–those earings are to die for! Okay, so maybe the earings aren’t that manly, but the reporting service is invaluable.

    • Subscription to Library Insider where one can gain access to over 2,500 public libraries: $15-$60 per state.

    • “Behind the Stacks” training to learn how to market to those libraries from an industry authority: $500.

    • Real measurable results from all your efforts: priceless (okay, $25 per title per 3-month period).

  2. I’m not published in book-length fiction yet, but you sold me on this back on Monday. I love that you can see who responded to your pitch.

    I’ve always thought authors should be selling to libraries, and the thought that they might not have been surprised me. When we lived outside Chicago, if I couldn’t afford a book I wanted, I just asked my library to buy it–and they always did! Of course, that was a large library system with high taxes.

    Now I live in a small town where the budget is tight, and I haven’t felt like I could request as much as I used to. What I look forward to–someday!–is finding out the rationale that goes into the buying process.

  3. Janet, I’m definitely looking forward to having access to this valuable information one day when the time comes! Until you introduced us to Library Insider and Library Locator, I have to be honest…I had no idea what a driving force that libraries could be with regard to our books!

    Something that you’d said previously really struck a nerve with me…concerning statistics. That being, while the overall economy may still be struggling, readership at local libraries is increasing. Word of mouth speaks volumes and travels far and wide when touting a favorite read. That eventually translates into selling MORE books…be it to bookstores, retail outlets, and of course, LIBRARIES!

    Still digesting all of this. Thank you for giving us new insights this wk!

  4. Caroline says:

    That seems like a great service. Measurable results of our efforts definitely are hard to come by in many ways in this arena. Receiving such concrete data seems both wise and useful (and hopefully encouraging!).

    Thanks for pointing out this service within Library Insider to us!

  5. Measuring results certainly is hard when it comes to book promotion. I promote authors through virtual book tours, and the results question comes up time and again. Yes, you can track sales info at through Author Central now, and if you’re selling books during your VBT, you can guess that it’s because of your tour; but what about someone who reads about your book on a blog 3 months after your tour is over and decides to give it a try?

    I like being able to easily measure my results through this product. Great job!

    Lance, will you take a picture of you wearing those earrings to share with us if you win? 🙂

  6. Renee says:

    Good Morning from Pasadena. As I am “supposed to be” working right now, I’ll keep this short and sweet. I am aspiring writer, although I only have snippets here and there, and not a book in sight! But I am so happy I found this website and blog! It’s so nice to see all of the tools I can one day use:)
    Happy Thursday!

  7. Janet Grant says:

    Thanks for your comments. It’s gratifying to see that you all “get” what makes Library Insider so powerful. And, thanks, Lance for doing the math for us. We worked hard to keep the costs down, but it’s nice to have the sum charted out.
    And now–trumpets and drum rolls–the winner of yesterday’s prize is Cheryl Malandrinos. Cheryl smartly increased her chances of winning by sprinkling the Library Insider logo in several places on the Internet. Congratulations, Cheryl. If you would email your shipping address to [email protected], we’ll send your loaded-up book tote, T-shirt, mug and teas.

  8. Joanne Sher says:

    I’m not published yet either, but this sounds SO wonderful. I’m also very impressed with the results information you can provide. Once I AM published, I’m sure I’ll make use of this. Please enter me!

  9. The ability to track your results is a fantastic addition to this service! There’s nothing more effective than quantifiable results to prove the value of an investment.

  10. Lori says:


    This is week’s topic is very interesting. I just wish I had a book ready to promote. It appears that this will make the marketing process much easier for authors let alone publishers.

    As a technical person, I would of thought that something like Library Insider would of existed way before now.

  11. Janet Grant says:

    Lori, the work required to put together Library Insider was immense. Judy Gann gathered and updated and gathered and updated the data over a two-year period. And, I have to say, the sophistication of all the permutations of how the data is available brought the Pulse Point Design coding team to its knees. We asked much of them, and they delivered more than we asked for. No one else has made the effort that our team has. That’s why you haven’t seen a version of Library Insider before.

  12. Lisa says:

    Looks like a great resource to have – wish we had a similar thing here in Canada (this probably disqualifies me from the prize, doesn’t it? oh well :/ )
    Definitely something to keep in mind for the future. Thanks.

  13. Thanks. I appreciate these giveaways. They’re wonderful.

    You know what I have found most inspiring this week is the number of aspiring authors who visit this blog regularly. It shows they take their writing seriously and want to hear news from the experts. I think that’s great!

  14. And as much thought as has gone into this project, I think “we’ve only just begun” (sing it with me now) to imagine the value of its impact…both professionally and on the level of that one library patron who picks up that one book that resonates with her and impacts some aspect of her life forever, or longer.

  15. I’ve shared information about Library Insider with lots of other writers. It sounds like a wonderful program and I’m so glad you and Judy are doing it. When my next book comes out I’ll probably participate.

  16. There’s nothing that I don’t love about this whole concept, and the fact that the results are clearly measurable is priceless. I can’t wait until I have a reason to use the system! 🙂 And I have to say kuddos to Pulse Point on the design. The site is clean, easy to navigate, and visually beautiful.