The Art of the Ask: Get Your Book Sponsored

I’ve had a lot of success in gaining local and national sponsorship for my books, which has allowed me to sell thousands of books, while alsoand this is my favorite part—raising thousands of dollars for charities close to my heart. 

As a writer and a person with a huge heart for service, I could not ask for more. My book is my tool and my resource, and in collaboration with others, it’s all I need.

Have you ever wondered what it takes to gain a sponsor, sell books in bulk, and reach the hands of the masses? If you haven’t ever considered it, are you considering it now?

Here’s the secret:
If your “why” is clear, your book is published, you’re willing to work and follow your heart, all that’s left then is the art of the ask. 

Let me start at the top, and keep this very simple. To gain book sponsorship, you must:

  1. Clarify your “Why”? 

Why did you/will you write this book? Who did you/will you write this book for? What are your personal and professional goals for your book project? 

  1. If you’re book is not yet published, get it published!

If it’s in your head, heart or computer, then finish it. Hire a book coach to help complete and prepare your manuscript for publication if you need to, but trust me, unpublished books are unsponsored books. If it’s ready or to go, seek out book contracts, and have them reviewed by the NWU Contracts Division. Move forward with your publishing agenda. Your book is ready whenever you are.

  1. Do the work!

Books don’t sell themselves, and authors don’t become famous through daydreaming. Get active on social media, connect with your readers, submit press releases for publication, show potential sponsors who you are, and have a Press Kit and One Sheet ready to go! 

Show them you’re prepared for strong, collaborative, and professional partnership.

  1. Be Willing to Follow Your Heart

This sounds so fluffy, but I mean it. In fact, it might be the single most important ingredient to obtaining a book sponsorship. I first approached Jack in the Box for sponsorship by both making a phone call and sending an email to the CEO. Yes, I had done my work: my Press Kit, One Sheet, Spec Sheet, Sample Press Releases, and more were ready to go, but in a phone call, he couldn’t see all of that…

He could only hear the passion in my voice behind the idea I had.

“I was a Little Sister in this program,” I explained, “and now I’m a Big Sister, and I love it, but I am only one person. We need more Bigs. If I can put my books in your restaurants, and we could offer back a portion of the proceeds to Big Brothers Big Sisters, maybe we could raise the funds and awareness  to support more children!”  There was silence. I continued on, “Jack in the Box is already a sponsor of this charity, so I knew I had to call and personally share my thoughts with you. This would mean a lot to me.”

His response, “I was just wondering how we could get more involved in community on a local level. Your timing is perfect.”

A week later, they placed their first bulk order of my book, What Love is…A-Z, in support of Big Brothers Big Sisters of Ventura County.

Where does your heart take you? 

  1. The Art of the Ask

Finally, as you already read, your ask is your golden key. Your passion, generosity of spirit, and win/win/win opportunity is the gift to all involved, and really, this isn’t an ask at all — it’s an invitation. 

It’s an invitation to make books, products, business and marketing campaigns matter in BIG ways, and also to, as writers, leave a lasting positive impact on the world with our messages and our publications.

You can do this, writer friend! In fact, you were born to do this. And if I can be of any assistance, just ask. I’m only an email away.

Elle Febbo is SoCal chapter chair and an NWU contract adviser and grievance officer. She’s also a best-selling, award-winning author.