Want to know how to market your book (or anything else for that matter)? Then writer and publisher Paul Collins is your man. And a self-made man at that. Paul is the author of more than 140 books, publisher at Ford Street and runs his own speakers agency CreativeNet. At the Children’s and Young Adult (CYA) writer’s conference he shared his secrets to success.
- Create a Media Release or Author Information Sheet – this can be sent out with review copies of your book and be ready for download on your author website. For a small fee you can access databases to schools Australia-wide via www.writefax.com.au
- Parallel marketing – think outside the square and write a piece that might be published in a magazine that’s related to your topic. Eg. If you’ve got a picture book out on dogs, send a quirky article to Dog’s Life. For lists of newspapers go to www.newspapers.com.au Also try articles on process, etc for Reading Time and Magpies.
- Hold a Blog Tour – this helps out other authors looking to fill blog posts and spreads the word on social media.
- Make Merchandise – bookmarks, printed on one side only so you can autograph the back, are always a hit with kids and hang around a lot longer than an autograph on a bit of paper. Other useful merchandise can be postcards, fridge magnets and banners. Personally, I’ve found vistaprint very good for postcards and banners.
- Ask a Speaker’s Agency to represent you.
- Approach Groups where you might speak – Probus, Lions Club, Rotary, etc are always looking for guest speakers – this might be about your road to publication or the subject matter of your book if it is on relevant topic; mental illness for example. (Just on the public speaking aspect; if this is something that turns you to jelly, Paul recommends ToastMasters to help conquer your fear).
- Keep a database of people who buy your books and let them know when you have a new publication.
- Individually invite all your FB friends to your book events – according to Paul, although this is tedious, it has far better results than a universal invitation posted on Facebook.
- Enter your book in awards.
- Create a book trailer and have it on your website.
I think that’s pretty comprehensive but any other tips would be most welcome in comments 🙂