Sunday, March 29, 2015

Must Do Marketing: Phase Two

There are three primary reasons you must market your writing. Promotions are free, offers name recognition, and helps to sell your books. After the basics of having a blurb, email, web page, and business cards, comes Phase Two of marketing your work.

1.  Start a portfolio. This can simply be a binder with page protectors. Whenever your name or your book appears in print, date it and the source and put it in the binder. You can display this binder at your writer events and presentations.

2.  Take photos. Always have a camera with you to capture you in action. Photos of you with other authors is also a good idea. Take the photo showing the signage of the event or your table display. You want to remember that book fair, book launch, or the meet-and-greet at a writers' conference. How about when someone wins that gift basket you donated?

3.  Write book reviews.  Ask other writers to trade books and both of you agree to read and do a book review on line. If someone mentions they have read and enjoyed your book, ask them if  they would write a review. There are also online author sites where you can request a review and repost reviews.

4.  Make presentations. Offer to speak at libraries, school career day, church groups, book clubs, senior centers, or community organizations.  This is especially worthwhile if your book fits into a season, social need, or community concern or event.

5.  Teach a class.  This can be done informally at a life-long learning organization or a parks/recreation community program. If you have the educational credentials and experience, you can teach a college course or create a short seminar or discussion group.

6.  Offer to speak at local book clubs. You can generate interest in your book by talking about your experiences writing or publishing your work. You can compare your work to similar books. You can discuss what makes your book the same or different from other writing styles.

7.  Make book baskets. Give these as prizes and gifts for all occasions. Put your book, business card, and related items in a basket and keep it on hand for birthdays, house warmings, teacher gifts, hospital visits, charitable events, and so on.

8.  Display your books at out-of-town events. Many conferences and book fairs offer a Display Book Only option for a small fee. This is a great way to reach bigger markets and gain exposure beyond your family, friends, and local community. Some will return your book if you enclose a SASE.

9.  Write a media release. Send this out each time you launch a new book, speak at a library or conference, participate in a book fair, or win a prize. If you win an award, or have a promotional opportunity, unrelated to your writing, be sure to include the fact that you are an author and mention the title of your book(s).

10..Participate in book fairs. These tend to be more intimate learning and selling opportunities. You may begin to meet some of the same writers and form friendships. This can lead to an exchange of editing and critiques of each other's work. Typically authors sell books and related items to attendees and give out and exchange business cards for future contact.

 ~ ~ ~

~ Valerie Allen ~                                
Psychologist, author, and speaker writes, fiction, non-fiction, short stories, and children's books. She is a popular presenter at writer conferences and the author of, “Write, Publish, Sell! 2nd Editon.”
 Beyond the Inkblots: Confusion to Harmony
Write Publish Sell!
Summer School for Smarties
Bad Hair, Good Hat, New Friends
Amazing Grace
Sins of the Father
Suffer the Little Children
'Tis Herself: Short Story Collection, Vol 1

1 comment:

  1. LOL. One more tip! Read more than one book on marketing. You're sure to get at least one more great idea and even surer to be inspired anew!
    Carolyn Howard-Johnson
    Multi Award-Winning Author of the HowToDoItFrugally series for writers including the second editions of the Frugal Book Promoter ( and The Frugal Editor ( )The latter is e-book only.for the time being.

    PS: We don't disagree on even one of these ideas, Valerie! (-: