Describe your role
I am export sales manager for independent publisher Kyle Books. I look after the international sales of all our UK editions in all overseas territories excluding Ireland. I work with booksellers and sales reps to maximise our book sales in each market and make the most of any events, trends and seasonal opportunities. I also have a hybrid role in looking after the company’s website and social media.
What do you like best about your role?
I like that I get to make a living from selling books! Beyond that I appreciate the people I work with and those I get to meet. Booksellers are certainly good fun. The international dimension to my job is also exciting. There is always more to learn.
Which new titles are you working on at the moment?
We have a frontlist packed with gorgeous food books so I’m enjoying selling those right now. I’m also working on developing existing accounts and establishing new ones. We’ve just relaunched our website so I’m promoting that and our social media presence.
What skills would someone need to do your job?
Good literacy and maths skills, interpersonal skills and the ability to get on with lots of different people from many different cultures. Tenacity is important too. Organisation and a good eye for detail are essential as there are lots of moving parts to this job! As is a passion for the books you sell.
What advice would you give to those looking to work in the industry?
To join the Society of Young Publishers. Seriously, join the SYP, keep up to date with the industry by reading the trade press and going to publishing events, and work out how you can gain the skills and experience you need through university projects, voluntary work and part time and temporary jobs. It’s a myth that you need to work for months for free. Above all, hustle (with credit to Sam Missingham).
Questions by Maria Vassilopoulos. If you are working in the industry and would like to appear in this column, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
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