Whether you’re wrapping up the book for a spring delivery or halfway finished for a fall arrival, it’s likely you’ll want to boost yearbook sales. Here are five ways to drum up excitement for the book’s arrival and rack up additional sales.
1. YOU'RE IN!
Let students know they’re in the book; it’s one of the easiest ways to add new sales. Post the entire index outside the door or in a prominent, well-traveled spot on campus. You can add a personal touch by hand delivering notices to students who are in the book, but haven’t purchased one. Use the “Hey! You’re in the Yearbook!” sticky notes in the Balfour spring planning kit or create your own version.
Adding the pages on which a student appears heightens interest in purchasing a book. For spring delivery books, an ideal time to work on this marketing campaign is during your final deadline. For summer or fall books, take a break from production to work on this project or assign one or two staffers who have availability.
Hardin Valley Academy (left) created postcards for non-buyers, noting what pages they’re on and how to purchase a book. The Flight staffers hand delivered postcards to non-buyers and mailed a copy home to parents. Hill Middle School (right) printed brightly colored notes for both buyers and non-buyers, letting them know what pages they’re on.
Don’t have time to create your own or hand-deliver notes? Use the eMarketing program that has pre-made templates; select the photo you prefer and update the text with your school, prices and deadlines. Send emails to all non-buyers who are in the book.
Sample eMarketing template
2. DID YOU BUY A BOOK?
Unfortunately, sometimes students and parents can mistakenly think they’ve purchased a book when they haven’t. Don’t let surprises like that ruin the student’s day or your distribution excitement. Use the sales list to promote additional sales. Print giant copies and post around the school. Circulate the list on social media platforms, student publications and the school website. In all instances, have the website or order forms available for easy purchasing.
Posting a list of yearbook orders is a smart way to market books to non-buyers. Seven Lakes High School (left) posted their 2018 list in a hallway and promoted it on Twitter. Summertown High School (middle) broke down their list by grade and class. Siegel High School (right) printed their buyer list and posted reminders on social media.
3. ONLY 10 LEFT...
Use a countdown clock as a sales motivator. Instead of counting down days till the book arrives, show how many days are left to purchase. To stress urgency, create a giant sign, display it in a prominent spot and change the number every day. Remind everyone of the limited number of books available on social media—Facebook posts for parents and Instagram and Twitter posts for students.
A last-minute eMarketing email can also push final sales. Try one a month before the book arrives and another the week before. Stress how many yearbooks are left so parents realize how quickly they will need to order.
McCallum High School increased sales in 2018 by displaying a countdown sign showing how many books were still available. The dwindling number worked; the staff added new sales every day until they sold out.
4. BE LIKE MIKE.
Take a page from YouTube and Instagram and utilize influencer marketing. Every school has beloved teachers, favorite athletes and strong leaders. Show the influencers why the yearbook is important and they’ll share that confidence with their classes, teammates, friends and followers. In addition to their personal postings, create your own ad campaign by using media influencers in promotional material. Last April, the Rouse yearbook staff featured well-liked students and faculty holding the yearbook’s sample cover to boost sales. The staff sold more books than any year in the 10-year history of the school.
No social media presence? Put photos on big posters in the hallway or make a short video and run it on broadcast announcements. Use those influencers to persuade your audience to buy books.
Rouse High School (left) ran a social media campaign for the 2018 yearbook, featuring well-recognized teachers and students. They used their sample cover to help create interest. In past years, Cypress Creek High School (right) coordinated with faculty members and clubs to endorse the yearbook on their personal social media accounts.
5. DON'T LEAVE YOUR COVER UNDERCOVER.
A cover reveal can be the ultimate sales catalyst. Drum up excitement for the yearbook by holding a contest to guess the theme like Stratford High School did in October. They revealed clues on Instagram, putting winning guesses into a drawing for free food. Coffee County High School shared their cover by posting a video on Twitter. Staffers held old yearbooks, displaying years of covers, before concluding the video with their 2018 cover. Another option is to slowly unveil the cover using sticky notes. Each day, on social media and on the school broadcast, remove a sticky note until the cover is revealed.
Or turn your cover reveal into an annual tradition that really celebrates the year and the book. Glacier Peak High School’s staff creates a three to four-minute video every year that culminates with a cover reveal. While music plays, the video features moments from the year, from classes, clubs, events and sports. A voiceover in the last minute smartly connects to the yearbook theme and ends with the cover images. About a month before the book arrives, Glacier Peak shares the video on their publication website and on social media. The cover-reveal video is a smart way to build excitement for the book and spread the word about its nearing arrival.