Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Marketing and PR Tips for Upcoming Authors

I’ve always loved novels. I love to read, and I love picturing the characters in my head. I also love movies. I love to compare the two, and see which I loved better: the book or the movie. Nine times out of ten, it’s always the book.

While my background is writing (my MFA is in it), I actually helped start a magazine when I was still an undergrad that went national. I met Scarlett through Teen People, and she had a great vision. She was editorial and I did the marketing. I learned a lot in that year and a half on what to say and how to make lasting connections.

When it comes to your book, getting your name out there is key. I’ll let you in on a little secret though. Don’t ever say, “Buy my book.” In doing so, you’re not allowing the perspective reader to make up their own mind. Interact with them, do giveaways, blog tours, or street teams. The more you interact with your readers, the better. I know as a reader, I love getting advice from my favorite authors. I love knowing they’ve been in my shoes once before, but didn’t give up. It makes me work that much harder.

While marketing can be costly, Goodreads offers their self-serve advertising and the proper advertising using target key words on Facebook advertising can also help. Running a giveaway that’s tied into the book makes people interact even more. It’s two-fold because they want to know how it ties into the book so they’re more than likely going to pick it up and read it, and now they’ve entered and become a follower.

Set up an author page on Facebook. Let it be a place where you tease what’s coming up next. Set goals. When I get to xxx followers, I’m going to release a teaser of my next book (with your editor's permission. Always, and I can’t stress this enough, always get permission).

One of the best tips I can give you is know your competition. Know comparative titles. Knowing that, and where they’ve placed will help you. Look at what they’ve done and see if you can do something similar, but different. Don’t ever be a cookie cutter. No famous athlete, politician, or celebrity became famous by being a cookie cutter of someone else. Want lasting power? Find what works and stick with it.

Till next time,
Happy writing!

~ Heather


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