Selling Full Sets of Srimad Bhagavatam

Principle #1: “The more you show, the more you sell.”

If the sets are visible, you will sell them. The more visible they are, the more readily you will be able to sell them. (Note: even if you’re not able to follow the elaborate process suggested below, if you simply make arrangements to display the sets, you will also sell some. By the same token, books left in boxes in the dark recesses of a storage locker do not sell as readily.)

Principle #2: “Where attention goes, energy flows.”

Organize your program so that attention goes to the set of books. If you use every means possible to draw people’s attention to the books, they will become attracted and they will take them home.

How to sell sets at the Sunday Program – Ingredients needed:

  • Display table
  • Full sets of books
  • Fliers announcing your special offer
  • Sign up sheet
  • Assistants
  • Limited time offer that includes a suite of services
  • Credit card acceptance capability
  • Check acceptance capability
  • Time payment facility (optional but important none the less).

Procedures for Success

Step 1 – Make an Outline

First make an outline of what you intend to offer. For example: “If you take
a set tonight – or within three days of this program you’ll get:”

  1. A full set of books (or a full set of S.B. or whatever you’re presenting)
  2. A discount from the normal, retail price. (We’ve been giving from $50-$75 off retail price.)
  3. A free installation program at your home (to “install” the set of books)
  4. Access to our technical support line if you have any questions about the books as you read them. (Ideally, you should have a program in place to take people through a study course of the first two cantos. This will include access to devotees who can answer questions and guide them on their spiritual path.
  5. A one-year, free subscription to the B.T.G.

Step 2 – Make a flier to handout

Create your flier with a list all
of the benefits you’re offering and make multiple copies according to the size
of your program.

Step 3 – Set up a Display

Set up your display table right next to the seat you are speaking from so
that it is in plain view. Decorations are optional but very nice if you can get
them; you can include:

  1. Flower vases
  2. Candles
  3. Picture of Srila Prabhupada
  4. Nice table cloth
  5. Incense
  6. A devotee fanning the books with a Camara fan

Step 4 – Pre-Announce

Hand out fliers to guests, pre-announcing your offer. Your assistants (or you) should stand by the
entryway(s) making sure that all guests entering the room get a flier.

If you are the speaker and are being introduced, make sure that the
announcer emphasizes that your current mission is to distribute full sets of
SP’s books.

Step 5 – Make your presentation

Focus your talk on the Srimad Bhagavatam, Cc (or whatever set(s) you’re
selling) Emphasize the benefits they’ll get from owning the set (e.g. Their
house will instantly become a temple, Regular reading will bring auspiciousness,
happiness and prosperity).

Give testimonial stories about others who have taken the sets (or listened
to S.B.) and have experienced miraculous benefits. Line up important slokas
that glorify those who own/keep these books in their homes.

Close your talk by presenting your limited time offer including the list of
specials they will get if they take the set now.

Ask them to take a set home tonight. Mention that if they have a set already
they should get one or a few more to give as gifts to friends or relatives. Quote
the Matsya Purana as saying that anyone who gives the gift of S.B. on a full
moon day goes back to Godhead.

Close with a story that emphasizes the wisdom of acting immediately if
something is auspicious (and the pain and folly of not acting).

Step 6 – Sell from the display tables

After your talk, stay by the table the rest of the evening to talk to people
about taking sets. It’s ideal if you have another table set up in the lobby or
outside if you are speaking in a temple room. After your talk, proceed to your
outside table that is equipped with sets of books.

Have your assistants stay near the book table(s) to help you take names and
sell sets. Use your sign in sheet to take names of those who pay that evening
as well as those who will buy in the next couple of days.

Step 7 – Follow up

Schedule installation programs for the people who buy the sets. Here’s how
to do the installation

  1. They invite their friends
  2. You help them cook (unless they are qualified to do so)
  3. Do aratrika for their set of books. Offer flower
  4. garland to the books. Offer the bhoga to the books (with a page opened to a
  5. picture of Srila Prabhupada).
  6. Give a talk about the importance of reading the books

Make the same offer to the guests at the installation that you did at your
original presentation. From this you’ll
sell more sets and schedule more installation and the program will grow.

Make sure that everyone who bought a set gets a free BTG subscription.

Contact buyers by phone, email and postcard thanking them for their
involvement and congratulating them for taking a big step on the spiritual
path. Offer them all help and support.

Make the full set a center-point of your temple

Distributing Srimad Bhagavatam Sets, ISKCON of Silicon Valley (ISV)