Wednesday, 14 November 2012

A Learning Experience from Promoting...

Well I've learnt a lot about book promotion this past week, so I thought I'd share a few of the things I've discovered.

Plan ahead

It might help you to make a list of all your potential outlets for advertising your book- flyers that can be left at any local shops, libraries, writers groups and community settings (these do depend upon the genre of your book of course, and permissions).

Local newspapers - worth looking at the free papers that get put through the door; if you can find a local slant to appeal, as with any regional paper you buy. (Our daily paper has a weekend supplement with the Saturday edition and includes books, and local related articles- often by specific writers, so send a suitably adapted press release.)

Check out local radio- if you're in a big (UK) city you'll possibly have a BBC radio station. You may find a show during the day that has a book slot that would welcome local writers.

Flyers with your book cover, author name, where it's available (for e-books) and the price, plus a bit of the blurb. More can go by e-mail nowadays but please don't just send it to everyone on your contact list and every writer you have a contact address for. That is spamming them and they will not appreciate it, or buy your book. You can lose more friends and contacts that way.

Social media- hopefully you have a presence on Facebook and Twitter; so you've made friends who might retweet a message when you're tweeting about your book launch, or giving links to where they can read about and buy your book.

If you've created a page for your book, invite your friends to like it.

For the anthology we started with the important posts - images of the book, the back page, and the gorgeous Lola, trained by the charity we're giving 10% to.

Each day a small related link was posted as a countdown to the official launch, which hopefully kept the book in the back of readers minds, and coming back to find out more each day.

On launch day as many of the writers who could do so blogged, visited, commented, tweeted and retweeted, and posted on Facebook, also sharing. (Be warned it is tiring, so have regular breaks.)

And then there were the launch parties...

Only time will tell how sales from all sources have done, but yesterday the anthology was 17th in the kindle store anthologies list. Of course it's dropped back today as everything has gone back to normal and other anthologies get promoted.

As is inevitable there were the odd typos that slipped through, but they've now been corrected.

If you're just one person promoting a book you can only do so much. And a lot of it can be done online to reach more potential readers, so choose your best methods to get the news out and books sold.

A really important point to remember when approaching local press/radio- especially at this time of year; are there any major events going on, either locally or nationally?
Last weekend was Remembrance Sunday, and this Friday is Children in Need- both big news events, so I'm not approaching local press about the anthology until early next week, and hopefully it won't get passed by.

(It may still be, but why make it harder for yourself spending time sending out press releases that won't get read because there are big events going on with lots of local coverage filling the pages?)

I'll be adding the book cover in my sidebar (somewhere). It's a lovely reminder that I've been published in a book before I'm another year older... :-)

Are there any tips you would like to pass on? If so please leave a comment below.










5 comments:

lizy-expat-writer said...

Me? Offer tips on promotion? I shall be reading everyone else's advice because I know if I ever reach the giddy heights of publication I shall need to learn a whole new skill.

Rosemary Gemmell said...

It's definitely a good idea to put the cover of the book (with a direct link to buy) on the side of your blog. And what good practise for your own novel!

Helen Baggott - Proofreading for eBooks said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Helen Baggott - Proofreading for eBooks said...

Cultivate contacts with local media and send in something they can print without having to spend too much time working on it.

Good luck with the radio next week - I can't wait to hear the interview!

Carolb said...

Lizy, I was told by a published writer that you need to have the basics in place before you get to the published stage.

And I have to say, having seen how other writers do their promoting it's been really helpful for the anthology.

Thanks, Rosemary. Now the anthology is out I'm going to be able to finish the blog redesign. :-)

Another one to add to the promotion list tips, Helen. Thanks.

I will blog about the radio experience, and provide a link so everyone can hear it later, if they can't hear the actual
event. :-)