St. Martin’s Press is teaming up with Swagbucks, a loyalty and rewards site, to launch a new digital literature channel called Read. The Read channel, which will live on the Swagbucks website, will feature titles by popular St. Martin’s authors; it will allow consumers to learn about new books while they earn swagbucks, the site’s virtual currency, for use purchasing books and other merchandise.
Swagbucks' Read channel is going live with authors like Sherrilyn Kenyon, Chevy Stens and Mary Kay Andrews. The channel will feature new SMP titles in addition to book trailers, excerpts, newsletters and a variety of social media interaction.
Jeff Dodes, St. Martin’s Press executive v-p, marketing & digital strategy, said St. Martin’s has been working with Swagbucks, which has over 10 million member, for awhile to develop the Read Channel. “Swagbucks is pretty big. We’ve worked with them on books before and got great engagement and click-through rates,” he said. He added that SMP's social media campaigns with Swagbucks were “3 to 4 times better” than with other partners.
Dodes said the site users are overwhelmingly female and research shows they are “really interested in books.” Users “do all kinds of stuff brands want them to do,” and earn Swagbucks—“a lot of this stuff you wouldn’t do without incentives”—that can be turned into giftcards at all the major retailers.
St. Martin’s worked with Swagbucks to develop the Read channel and SMP content dominates it for now. Dodes said to look for a big push for “beach read season,” including promotions for such works as Grave on the Edge by Darynda Jones, Shadow Falls After Dark by C.C. Hunter, Ladies’ Night by Mary Kay Andrews, The Witch of Belladonna Bay by Suzanne Palmieri and others. He also said the Channel will also add works targeting male readers.
Drake Sutton-Shearer, v-p of brand solutions & strategy at Swagbucks, also described the Swagbucks membership as “avid readers,” and said “The Read channel brings a new and exciting product to our members, including a fast-growing group of our Facebook subscribers comprising the Swagbucks Book Club. Leveraging communities of interest around authors, genres, subjects and other content will draw in more Swagbucks members to discover new titles and ultimately drive engagement and sales for our publisher partners.”
“We constantly seek innovative ideas and platforms to reach and delight consumers on behalf of our authors,” Dodes said. “Swagbucks has provided us a turnkey, first-of-its-kind book marketing vehicle to do just that for many of our upcoming titles. We have already seen success on the platform and believe it will grow even further.”