The Fake $100 Bill: Book Promotion Ideas

As usual, this friday me and my husband went mall-strolling. We have the same routine once we enter the mall. Take the shortest route from the entrance to the frozen yoghurt kiosk. Buy a delicious, yummy, cup of yoghurt filled with chocolate syrup and toppings. And then walk to the nearest seating area to enjoy it. What we do after that is irrelevant. But this is a tradition that we haven't broken till date.

So, this friday when we found our seats at the seating area, I saw this on the table:

For a moment, I thought it was a 100 dollar bill though the shiny texture did give it away after the initial surprise. Nevertheless, I had to see why it was there.

When I took that piece of paper and turned it around, this is what I found:

With a smile, I put it back there.
I thought of how useless that note was to me yet I picked it up. Not only that. I also spent time reading the text, thought of who can benefit from this and how are they conducting their business. If you were me, you might have different questions flooding your mind but there would be some thoughts around it.
It was during those weird two minutes that the realization struck me.

Someone could grab my attention to sell their product to me through a fake 100 dollar bill even without being physically present.

How?  By placing a 100 dollar bill lookalike which was bound to grab attention. (You are not interested in an abandoned 100$ bill? Seriously?)

OK. So, why am I telling you this? Because often in our lives as writers, we forget the need to promote our books, to get readers read our books. We often think blurbs, excerpts and other text is enough to grab their attention. Really? What about those readers/potential readers who do not have the time to read the excerpt? How do you appeal to all their senses and push them towards your book?

The point I am trying to make here is: Have you ever thought what makes a reader pick up your book?  Is it the book cover? Is it the blurb? Or is it the glowing, fluorescent SALE sticker on your book?

Have you ever considered how important appearances are to your books? 

There is no argument about having great book covers but does it end right there? I would love to know what you think would grab the attention of our potential reader!



  1. Well put - I was wondering how you'll connect the $ 100 bill to writing :) True - often we undervalue blatant promotion!
    Cheers on yet another well written post :)

    1. Thanks Aditya! It struck me when I saw the note. Glad you enjoyed it. :)

    2. I'll admit, I've done something similar to this from time to time. I usually keep a stack of bookmarks in my purse. And given the chance to talk about my book I'll give them out. But on occasion, while I'm out and about, I'll just set one or two somewhere. I know if I was at the grocery store I'd wonder why there was a bookmark at the self-checkout, or at the drop box at the post office, and I'd probably take it. Whether or not it leads to a sale I can't always tell, but at least I've peaked someones curiosity. Great post Shilpa!

    3. Wow. That is a good idea too. I think i would end up going back to see if the bookmark is picked up. :) Thank you Darian for the idea!

  2. Mmmh,when you started out on the story, you had me 100 dollars on seat? just like that?

    Yep! I'll speak for myself as a reader. First of all, the cover. At least it has to be attractive, a sight for sore eyes. Then the blurb, then the price. In that order..hehe

    1. Haha..imagine! I am sure a lot people drooled seeing that. LOL. I think your preference is right. That is why designers are so much in demand today I guess. Hahaha...

  3. You dont need to do this Shilpa...Your book cover will draw a lot of attention..For me seeing the cover takes me to a different era, my younger carefree days, when reading a romantic novel was almost equivalent to living it LOL..Nice are so good with words.

    1. Thank you Sudeshna! :) It was wonderful to write it. It is coming out in march 6th. Hope you enjoy reading it! :)

  4. Hi Shilpa,

    You've been book tagged @


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