by Sara Wigal
It’s easy to get lost in a maze of “you should” and “best practices” for how to release your book. For many authors, PR can be a chore that all of the sudden removes the fun from your writing career, and makes you forget exactly why you were so inspired in the first place! Don’t let endless possibilities overwhelm you—stick to a few things you know you can accomplish and actually calendar them out for yourself in the weeks leading up to (and sometimes after) your book’s release. Realistic time goals and manageable tasks are the key to staying motivated and keeping on trucking with book publicity. Here are some tips for promoting your book:
- E-mail your contacts in advance of your book’s publication date to let them know what day they can expect to purchase, or that they can pre-order (give them the online link for doing so in this message).
- Design fun swag—posters, t-shirts, stickers, etc., for fan giveaways online and at events. You’d be surprised how much readers love getting these little freebies!
- Pick social media platforms you would enjoy working with (you may need to play around some to get a knack for them all) and figure out which you enjoy the most. Focus on social media time on using that platform and putting out content that includes a good blend of personal posts, book/literary posts in general, and the smallest amount will actually be posts about your own book!
- Write at least one or two blog posts a week and be sure your book title is listed in either the post or your signature at the bottom. If you don’t have a website or blog currently, set up a free blog site where you can actively be writing weekly.
- Network at events. Connect with fellow authors for cross-promotion on social media and possible future joint-panel events. Ask them what works for them and see if any of their tactics are new to you (and then use them).
- Attend other literary events and author signings in your area or when traveling to show support for local venues and fellow authors. You never know where a new connection could lead.
Every author and book are unique and require special attention to give them the best shot at succeeding in the marketplace. Hopefully these tips can help you formulate your strategy for capturing the reading public’s attention!
This is a guest post by Sara Wigal. Sara Wigal is an Assistant Professor of Cinema, Television & Media and Director of Publishing at Belmont University, a unique undergraduate degree that equips students with necessary skills and knowledge to enter the book world. She serves the Next Chapter Society council which supports the programming made possible by the Nashville Public Library Foundation. She previously worked in literary PR, beginning as an assistant and working her way up to a Senior Manager role, shaping author brands and interacting with the media. Wigal has been published by The Tennessean, Publishers Weekly, and Writer's Digest.
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