Book Exhibition

Intl. Book Fair 2016 Frankfurt, Germany

Frankfurter-BuchmessePhoto K. Johansson

The most important publishing industry event of the year, takes place in 2016 from October 19 to 23: The Frankfurt International Book Fair. During these five days in October, it is THE PLACE TO BE – for authors, publishers, and book lovers.
With 275,000 visitors, 7,275 international exhibitors and 9,300 journalists and bloggers Frankfurt is a great platform to show books, including self-publishers. Present your title, book a slot or participate at one of the discussions and workshops. 15 insider tips for exhibitors at book fairs can be found in one of our blog articles:  Planning to Exhibit at a Book Fair?

The internationalization of the publishing sector continues to accelerate rapidly, a fact reflected in the strongly cosmopolitan networking pursued at the Frankfurt Book Fair, the most important in the world.

30th Frankfurt Rights Meeting.
For 30 years, the “Who’s Who” of the international trade in rights and licenses has been meeting and networking at the Frankfurt Rights Meeting (formerly International Rights Directors Meeting). This year is all about Surprising Successes in Challenging Times. High profile speakers will look at this intriguing topic from an array of different angles, providing the audience with valuable insight into their strategic thinking. Different success stories, one promise: Market knowledge, inspiration and network!

Guests of Honor
Flanders & the Netherlands together will be the Guest of Honor at the Frankfurt Book Fair in 2016.  A look ahead: In 2020 most likely Canada will have this pleasure – a wonderful opportunity and an unprecedented boost to Canada’s literary industry with a year-long spotlight on the country’s cultural sector.

Industry Insights, Inspiration, International Trends.
International experts present and highlight leading trends and forecasts for the media industry.  Business Ticket holders have the opportunity to meet international decision makers and pioneers in the industry.  Get connected; every day in the Business Club starts with a Business Breakfast and ends with a Happy Hour (sounds promising, doesn’t it?)

Get an Impression of the Fair.
See a life Video from the International Frankfurt Book Fair on YouTube

More Tips for your Visit:

To make your book fair visit even more pleasant:

  • Wear Comfortable Shoes
  • Bring Water Bottles and a Sandwich or Chocolate (long lines, high prices)
  • Don’t forget your Business Card (lots of Fishbowls to win something)


Two different tickets for trade visitors are available:
Trade visitor ticket: Book before 31 August 2016 and save 20% PLUS: Subscribe by 31 August 2016 for the Business Club Newsletter and get the chance to win one of three 6-day tickets BUSINESS! Go to the registration form:
Access to the Frankfurt Book Fair 9 am – 6.30 pm



Tickets include free Public transport in Frankfurt/ Rhine-Main area.  It is very easy to use the many subways and trams in Frankfurt. No need to book an expensive hotel room near the center.  There are great hotels in cities and towns around Frankfurt, such as Wiesbaden, Offenbach, Bad Homburg and each one has a fast-train connection to the fair.  One year I stayed at a beautiful castle in Darmstadt for a low price and reached the fair in less than 30 minutes – very comfortable and convenient.

Stay at Least Two More Days in Frankfurt.
There is so much to do and to see, from the famous medieval city centre “The Roemer” to the “Goethehouse”, the “Palmgarten”, modern art museums and certainly day-trips into the Rhine Wine villages with their many enchanting castles . Get some suggestions here.
Last but not least, try the local fare and the famous apple cider.


Planning to Exhibit at a Book Fair? 15 Tips!


Large book fairs in the U.S. and worldwide are geared toward booksellers and librarians. These shows offer big trade publishers, as well as smaller ones and author-publishers a chance to promote their books to bookstore buyers and librarians. See how authors can participate on a budget at small regional or national and even at major publishing industry trade shows.

Major International Book Shows
Frankfurt Book Fair, London Book Fair, Bologna Children’s Book Fair, Abu Dhabi and Leipzig Book Fair, not to forget the book show in Edinburgh, focus mainly on international book sales and the sale of foreign and translation rights of books. Non-fiction books might often have a higher chance of success at these fairs. National or state-wide book fairs, such as the BEA in New York City, or the Texas Library Show  are attended by both, librarians and bookstore owners.

How to Learn About Book Shows
First of all, find as much information about these shows as possible on their websites. Study their list of exhibitors and the genres of books displayed. Learn which audience is usually attending these shows. Check out the website of the American Library Association ALA where the library conferences are taking place throughout the year. Ideally attend book fairs first as a visitor and talk to as many people as you can – visitors and exhibitors alike, before you decide to rent a booth. It will be a great learning experience. Notice what other presenters are doing. Bring a notepad and paper, taking notes on what you appreciated in certain booths and what you thought other booths could have done better.

How to Save Expenses
A great way to share expenses is to get together with other independent publisher/authors you know, and rent a table or a booth together. If you divide the cost for a booth through three or four, your partizipation is suddenly not prohibitive anymore. Beware of companies that offer to show your books at International Fairs, such as the one in Frankfurt. Their fees run often from well over $200 to $500 and they will claim that hundred-thousands of visitors will see your book and you might even get a foreign language contract. Truth is, your book will sit with hundreds of others in a shelf, and no one will promote it to potential publishers. Save the money! There are millions of books displayed at these fairs and the chance that a foreign publisher discovers your book is smaller than to win the lottery.

What to Prepare
It is never too early, but often too late, to organize such a complex venue, especially for out-of-town shows. Here are just a few ideas for your checklist:

  • Sign up early. Apply and pay any fees ahead of time, too.
  • Contact event organizers with any special requests.
  • Need lighting or electricity in your booth? Request it well in advance.
  • Choose a booth location on a high-traffic spot.
  • Calculate expenses, such as booth rental, electricity, travel, hotel, giveaways etc.
  • Make reservations for hotel, flight and rental car if necessary.
  • If you are the sole exhibitor, organize at least one more person to help.
  • Order your displays and signs, flyers & business cards for your booth well in advance.
  • Check out all equipment that they work properly: laptop, overhead projector, displays, cables, lamps, spotlights, charger…
  • Giveaways such as book marks, peppermints, stickers, pens, even totes with your books title or cover image (if you want to splurge) should be ordered well in advance.
  • Folding chairs, a step ladder and a cart or dolly are useful items that you will be glad you brought.

How to Attract Visitors

  • Display and let your book trailer run throughout the day. All you need is a laptop and projector and a white display for the background. It draws for sure more people to your booth.
  • To stay in contact with interested visitors, bring a fish bowl to collect business cards and email addresses / contact information. Offer a really attractive prize for this sweepstake and you can be sure to get lots of cards.
  • Offer interested visitors to sit down for a moment, to have a cool drink while talking with you. They will be happy to rest their burning feet …
  • Have a well-lit booth to attract visitors, dress professionally and never, ever! eat at your exhibition booth.

Partizipating in a book fair means a lot of organizing, and it should be done well in advance, especially when the show is in another state or country.  These are just a couple of tips, check out these three sites for comprehensive checklists:




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Tagged: American Library Association (ALA), BEA, Book Exhibition, Book Fairs, Book Shows, Bookfair Frankfurt, Buchmesse Leipzig, London Book Fair, Texas Library Show

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