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New Romance Marketing Expert at Borders

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I have to just give a plug for my dear friend, Tina Trevaskis, who is now the new Romance/Horror & Westerns Marketing Specialist at Borders Group Inc. Tina is a huge lover of romance. I met Tina over 7 years ago (I think) due to our mutual love of romance. Of course, her goal is to sell as many romances (and horror and westerns) as possible so any marketing decisions will be geared toward that. I’m also sure she’ll take extra care to avoid misspelling names, JMC!

I am really excited that Tina, someone who loves the genre, will be leading the marketing charge at one of the largest retail book selling chains in the US. I bet if you’ve got a suggestion on how Borders can better serve its romance readers, Tina would love to hear it. (Or maybe not but eh, that’s what the comments are for, right?)

Jane Litte is the founder of Dear Author, a lawyer, and a lover of pencil skirts. She spends her downtime reading romances and writing about them. Her TBR pile is much larger than the one shown in the picture and not as pretty. You can reach Jane by email at jane @ dearauthor dot com

23 Comments

  1. Meljean Brook
    Dec 20, 2007 @ 02:16:00

    I’ve got no suggestions. Mostly I’m just here to say, Congratulations, Tina! That’s awesome news. :-D

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  2. Jill Myles
    Dec 20, 2007 @ 07:18:50

    Congrats, Tina!

    The Borders at my area actually carries a lot of small pub/epub paperbacks, which I thought was really interesting. B&N does not.

    Does Borders produce a ‘What’s Hot’ flyer like B&N used to for every month? I can’t recall, and I used to love getting those from B&N but they stopped doing it.

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  3. Laura
    Dec 20, 2007 @ 07:41:58

    Congrats Tina!

    I love science fiction romance. But it’s never shelved correctly. The hard SF people get upset when they see it in the science fiction shelves, and the it gets buried among the paranormal romances in the romance section. It’s a great genre, and I know it would sell better if it were marketed better. I don’t have any solutions, sorry to say, I just know it’s a problem SFR writers face. So I guess I’m not really helpful. Good luck with your new job!

    Laura

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  4. Sarah McCarty
    Dec 20, 2007 @ 07:55:14

    Congrats, Tina. Sounds like a wonderful job!

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  5. Patrice Michelle
    Dec 20, 2007 @ 08:00:10

    Congratulations, Tina! I hope you enjoy your new job.

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  6. Angela James
    Dec 20, 2007 @ 08:14:16

    Ah, I remember Tina, she was very enthusiastic and passionate about the authors and romance. Congratulations, Tina!

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  7. Jaci Burton
    Dec 20, 2007 @ 08:29:18

    Tina is one of the nicest people I’ve ever met. Warm and welcoming and a true lover of romance. I can’t think of a better person for the job.

    Congratulations, Tina!

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  8. ilona andrews
    Dec 20, 2007 @ 08:30:38

    Congratulations, Tina! Romance/Horror/Western FTW!

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  9. lisabea
    Dec 20, 2007 @ 08:47:53

    Hey, I don’t know you, but congrats. I am a Border’s purist for a couple of reasons: You don’t have to pay to be a member. You don’t have to keep track of your dollars earned: they TELL you at the register. And, if you hand them your card when purchasing something like the $80 DVD set I bought yesterday, and there is an on-line coupon you didn’t bring/remember, they GIVE you the 40% discount anyway.

    Great store.

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  10. Darlene Marshall
    Dec 20, 2007 @ 09:06:50

    Congratulations, Tina! I had a very successful signing at my local Borders back in April, and I’m happy to give them my business. I like their member card and the discount coupons I get, as well as their large selection of genre publications.

    Thanks too for giving the small press authors a shot. It’s meant a lot to me to be able to tell people they can buy my books at Borders.

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  11. Charlene Teglia
    Dec 20, 2007 @ 10:16:10

    Congratulations, Tina!

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  12. Maddie
    Dec 20, 2007 @ 10:32:54

    Well I can tell Tina what not to do what Barnes does which is to place the romance section all the way in the back of the store nect to the childrens section which on tuesdays the block off so the little kids can have a read along activity group, making it very hard to look in the romance section.

    The Borders by me is really great if I know that a book is out but not on the shelf they will go in the back and look for it, but I’m glad that some one who love romance is going to head that dept because some times I get the feeling that for all book stores that section is an after thought

    Congrats Tina

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  13. Bethany
    Dec 20, 2007 @ 10:33:14

    Good morning,

    Do you have an assistant in your new position? I would be very interested if there is one available. Please let me know and I can send you my email address. I live in central NJ.

    Your job seems like the opportunity of a lifetime. How exciting for you!

    Sincerely,

    Bethany Allinder

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  14. Carolyn Jean
    Dec 20, 2007 @ 11:05:05

    Congratulations! It’s great for us readers to have somebody with insight in such an important post. The Borders near me closed, which sucks, because I always preferred it, but I do have a B & N, and while I agree with Maddie – romance doesn’t belong next to the kiddie section, in our Minneapolis B & N, it’s right next to fantasy /sci fi, and that is super convenient because of all the crossover. Mystery, however, is sort of far away, which is unfortunate, again because of the crossover.

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  15. Jessica Inclan
    Dec 20, 2007 @ 11:31:15

    At my local B and N, romance is next to literature not the children’s section. And it’s huge. I have found Border’s, though, to be more friendly to genre in general. More up front,out front.

    But the job sounds great and fun, work that could effect a lot of people.

    Jessica

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  16. jmc
    Dec 20, 2007 @ 13:01:38

    Congratulations! It’s nice to know that the marketing will be handled by someone who is interested in the genre, rather than someone who is just marketing widgets.

    I didn’t realize that Borders had a dedicated Western section. Really?

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  17. Nalini Singh
    Dec 20, 2007 @ 16:27:01

    Hug congratulations, Tina!

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  18. Nalini Singh
    Dec 20, 2007 @ 16:27:44

    Huge, I meant huge :)

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  19. sherry thomas
    Dec 20, 2007 @ 16:30:36

    Congratulations again, Tina. Now tell us what we can do to help you sell more books. :-)

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  20. Seressia
    Dec 20, 2007 @ 18:26:40

    Greta that there will be a romance marketing guru who loves Romance in place at Borders.

    I do have a question: will Tina also take care of marketing black romance? When I asked Sue Grimshaw about it in September, she told me to speak with Sean Bentley who handles AA fiction for Borders. It sure would be nice to have someone who actually loves the romance genre responsible for ALL the books in the genre.

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  21. Tina
    Dec 21, 2007 @ 00:02:07

    Wow, I don't know what to say! Thank you! When Jane asked if she could make an announcement on her site, I thought it would be in the sidebar news!!!

    Thanks, Meljean! I've been seeing your name quite a bit at work! February is not too far off . . .

    Jill, there is! It's called Romance Top Picks! It comes out monthly and has many features – including a $1 off coupon on over 20 titles each month! There is also an online newsletter called My Borders Monthly – which includes letters from authors, book trailers and those all important coupons!

    Laura, from my perspective as a bookseller, I know what you're talking about. I always felt it was my job to get the right book in to the right reader's hand – many booksellers feel the same. Like you, I don't know a good solution off hand, but certainly ask your local bookseller for suggestions – she/he would be happy to help! And if not, ask Jane for my email and I'll send you a long list of great sci-fi romances! ;-)

    Angela, you're so sweet! I'm just happy you let me sit with you at breakfast!

    Jaci, you make me blush!!

    Lisabea, Darlene, I couldn't have said it better!

    Maddie, Carolyn Jean – thank you, for the wonderful compliments. I hope I can represent romance well!

    Bethany – I'll certainly let you know if they let me have an assistant!

    JMC, I know I'll be spending extra hours at my desk making sure I've spelled everything correctly!!! Just don't blame me for January – I've only been working on the print end there! And yes, there is a Westerns section! Very small, but there!

    Seressia – funny you should ask – this week I've had several opportunities to talk to the specialist who takes care of the AA fiction . . . In the meantime, Sean is fantastic as is the specialist, both are very interested in promoting romances!

    Sarah, Patrice, Ilona, Charlene and Jessica – thank you!!

    Nalini, I'll take the hug! Thanks!

    Sherry, I'll let you know! (See you in San Francisco, right? By then your book will have come out and we can celebrate together!)

    Jane, I'm the lucky one to call *you* dear friend!

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  22. Patricia
    Dec 21, 2007 @ 23:26:00

    Tina, Congrats on your new appointment! It’s great to have someone get promoted who loves Romances as I do. In the nearest Borders in Glendale, CA the store was refurbished, with the result that the Top 20 bestsellers, the stationery, magazines & coffee bar now reside on the lst floor, leaving the Romances relegated to the back of the 2nd floor, with a curving staircase to be climbed to get to it. There doesn’t seem any sales associates to help in that section, & check-out is on the lst floor. Formerly, I could get in & out in about 20 mins.–now, it takes around 45 mins., even if I can find the book(s) I wanted. I’ve asked why the change, citing many Romance readers being older & not being able to negotiate the staircase. The answer, “use the elevator”, but, I think waiting for an elevator & being closed in discourages customers. Since the average Romance reader buys around 100 books a year, it seems to me that it would make sense to have Romances convenient to the customer. I’ve solved this, by not shopping there. Do you have any thoughts why the change? Thanks for listening.

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  23. Tired
    Dec 22, 2007 @ 13:10:15

    Seressia, romance by black authors isn’t considered or treated as romance by the others.

    It’s treated differently in all respects, including distribution. All commercial fiction and genre by blacks are thrown into a racial category with a few exceptions. They have special black-tolerant people to handle it as Sean.

    This is a very unpopular subject to bring up or mention at romance places such as this because most others are satisfied with the status quo and really don’t want to hear about it.

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