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Using Tech for Book Marketing

Kate Gingold from Sprocket WebsitesKate has been building websites with her husband Don since 1996 for all sorts of clients, including authors.

Kate regularly writes about online marketing for Sprocket Websites and provides tips and techniques for entrepreneurs and small-business owners. Since being an author today is not really different from being an entrepreneur with a small business, most of those tips are just as useful to authors.

Kate is an author herself. She writes books on local history, including the award-winning "Ruth by Lake and Prairie," a fictionalized account of the true story of Great Lake pioneering to the shores of Chicago and beyond to found Naperville, Illinois. 

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/ Categories: Brief History

Naperville 1920 Flashback: Buying and Washing Clothes

Flapper dresses and wild spending are the stereotypes, but in 1920, hemlines were still fairly long and “The High Cost of Living” was a major campaign issue. Prices were expected to fall after the war ended, but because of inflation, labor costs and continued scarcity, they stayed high  and peaked in 1920, the highest Cost of Living ever recorded. 

But folks were also weary of war deprivations and ready to spend their war bond investments. The Naperville Clarion complained that “There probably never was such a wild orgy of buying as at the present moment.” 

One favorite expense was to invest in an electric washing machine to lighten the load for women. If you look at the ad for the Crystal Washer, which was made by Mallory Industries, you can see the Mallory logo between the washer’s legs. The image depicts a man lifting a bundle of clothes off the back of a kneeling woman. Make of that what you will.

In these early electric washer/wringers, the motor automatically agitated clothes in the washer. But then you needed to wring out the wash water, put the damp clothes in a basket, empty the washer, refill with clean water, and run the electric agitator again to rinse out the soap. If you were washing whites, you might have bluing rinse as well. One more wringing later, you were finally ready to hang your clothes in the yard to dry before ironing and folding. So much easier!

This ad for a Crystal Washer and Wringer is from the Naperville Clarion newspaper for Hillegas Hardware. Hillegas and Reich opened a hardware store in downtown Naperville in 1882 in the building where Frankie’s Blue Room and Features Bar and Grill is today. Apparently before the year ended the store became
Rassweiler Hardware, but the January advertisement is definitely still identifying it as Hillegas Hardware, the place you can buy your wife a Crystal washing machine.
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Full disclosure:  Writing for Sprocket Websites is my day job, so if you have questions about digital marketing, I'm happy to help!


Marketing Author Interview

Following a presentation for In Print Professional Writers Group, Kate's husband (and publisher!) Don was interviewed by author Louise Brass for WBOM Radio. During the conversation, Don shared many of the marketing tips from his presentation. You can listen to it online here.

The Sprocket Report

The Sprocket Report is published every other week with Internet marketing tips, tools and techniques. The archive features articles from 2011 up to the present. You are welcome to read how business owners are using technology to market themselves and apply those tips to your author business.



Get a Book Siging Checklist and our Sprocket Report

Kate will be happy to send you her brief Book Signing Checklist. Treat your book promotion like a business - because it is!

AND, since much of your efforts will be online, she'll also enroll you in her Sprocket Report, an email newsletter sent every other Tuesday, that includes 2 Internet Marketing tips and a post from a guest blogger on related business.

No worries! She won't use your email address for anything else, and you can unsubscribe from the newsletter anytime, but the checklist is yours to keep.

Any questions of Kate? Leave them in the message field and she'll get back to you ASAP.

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