Saturday, August 2, 2014

Marketing and Sales Panel: Felicia Frazier

Felicia Frazier
Felicia Frazier is the senior vice president of children's sales at Penguin Random House, where she's worked in a variety of roles.

As she gave her overview of how sales works, she confessed she thinks it's the best job in the industry.

"I love sales. It's so much fun," she said. And her mantra with her team of sales reps, no matter how great a year they've had, is "We think we can do better."

Children's publishing is the growth segment of the industry. Penguin publishes 650 new titles a year, on top of a 5,000-title backlist.

Penguin Random House wants their books to sell more copies today than they did previously. And they're doing it. The unstoppable 13 REASONS WHY by Jay Asher has sold more copies this year than it did seven years ago, she said.

Thirty-five percent of their list is debut authors, so as much as they love their back list, they're also passionate about debuts.

The numbers look good for those of us in the industry, Felicia said. The top 100 children's books are selling three times the physical unit sales today that they were 10 years ago. And compared to 2013, which was a good year, 2014 is 14 points better. She thinks children's books will exceed $4 billion in 2014.

One great thing about kids: There are new ones born every year.

"Every year, the book is new to somebody," she said (an observation people really loved hearing because her delivery was so passionate).

Her job is making sure that their books are wherever there are cash registers. She has identified more than 50,000 places where she can sell books. "And I love my job." 

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