Motivational speakers often promote their books to businesses. They offer to personalize their books or individually sign them, and then to appear at a business meeting for free. There's no reason fiction authors can't do the same.
For example, my husband hosts a meeting of the St. Louis Area Music Teachers Association every year. This year, I suggested he purchase a copy of my book for each of the teachers who'll be in attendance. I'll appear at the event and personally sign them.
The sales? At least 60 books.
Maybe more, because I'll be on hand to sell additional copies to the attendees. And I'll create a flyer to go to each attendee with the dates/times/locations of local signings. Plus details on where to order (through my local independent bookseller) more personalized copies.
Okay, you're thinking, but Joanna that's YOUR husband. That wouldn't work for me!
Nonsense. I'm working on a similar event with a local realtor. She wants to buy copies for her business associates and host a signing party for me. At the signing party, she'll invite her customers to meet an area author (me!) and enjoy some light refreshments.
What's really super about this event is...it's right in my backyard, it has no cost to me, and it will increase my local sales which may bump up my regional numbers.
Here's the key: It never hurts to offer--and I mean OFFER--your book and your presence to a business owner. They are always on the look out for a new, exciting and personal gift to give their best clients. Why not a copy of your book?