1. Read and Recommend CTS Titles
Have you ever been recommended a book by a family member or friend? The more familiar you are with CTS titles, the more personal recommendations you can give and that in turn will encourage people to buy. This also means you need to connect with your parish, getting to know your familiar parishioners so you know which CTS booklets they might benefit from.
2. Consider Your Audience
How well do you know your parish? Try to cater the books you order specifically to your parish. Consider too how engaged your parish is: are they more likely to benefit from Credo, for example, or the Penny Catechism?
3. Smart Ordering
Avoid ending up with booklets that won’t sell by either ordering high quantities of proven hits, or smaller quantities of a wider variety of titles. Note down what sells and order more of those titles next time.
4. Be Aware of News and Events
Knowing what’s going on not just in your local community, but also in the Catholic and secular news, will help you to focus your CTS titles on what people are talking about. Promote relevant titles in the newsletter in connection with the news story so people know where to find more information.
5. Start a CTS Reading Group
Increase the popularity of CTS in your parish by starting a CTS Reading Group. Share food or offer tea and biscuits to make people feel welcome, building one another up in the faith.
6. Keep the Rack Looking Good
If your rack is empty, messy, unorganised or filled with dog-eared books it’s unlikely to draw interest. Move your booklets around regularly, make your bestselling titles more visible, and slash the prices of titles that aren’t selling to make room for new ones.
7. Stay Up-To-Date With the News
When something big is happening in the news, Catholic or secular, people will be interested in reading more on that subject. Promote relevant titles in the newsletter in connection with the news story so people know where to find more information.
8. Liaise with Key People
You’re the CTS expert in your parish, but Catechists or other parish groups may not be aware that there are CTS resources they could benefit from. Arrange a meeting, suggest some titles and work out a lasting relationship between that group and CTS. You should also liaise regularly with your parish priest – what is his mission for the parish and how can CTS fit into it?
9. Don’t Lose Hope
It can feel disheartening if there is not much interest in your CTS display. Try not to lose hope: it is God’s work that you are doing, so He will ensure that it’s fruitful. Remember there may be fruits you can’t see and don’t lose heart.
10. Finally… Pray for the Mission of CTS
However you came to be CTS Rep, know that God chose you to serve him by serving your parish. He will not abandon you in this role. Pray that God will guide you and pray too for the mission of CTS, that through our work many will be brought to Him.