No way am I a media guru but I have found a few things that have worked to develop my author platform. Today as the snow flutters outside my window and my neighbor heads out in it, I’m happy to share a few things I’ve found. There are thousands of ways to get publicity but, unlike some, I don’t believe any publicity is good. You won’t be seeing me scantily clad at a football game or posting naughty movies on You-Tube. This is positive media attention we’re looking for, folks!
10 Ways to Get Publicity
1. Start a blog about your experiences in your area of expertise. I have two. One is more personal, where I put trip photos and family anecdotes when I get around to it. The second is my writing blog where you are reading this post. I publish Tuesdays and Fridays and am pretty faithful to that schedule. Quite a lot of people automatically get an email with a link every time I post. I love those people! And a lot of them comment, too. Double bonus.
2. Get on Twitter and tweet about your posts, your conferences, your writing friends or anything else that relates to your purpose. Don’t overdo the automatic tweets. I’ve deleted some people who clog up my timeline with hundreds of tweets a day where they try to sell me something. Rather, offer people help in your area. Retweet great posts you find or offer a how-to booklet you’ve assembled, digitally or the old way. Give something to get something.
3. Talk about your writing and make as many connections as you can in the field. People see you are working hard at your writing; therefore, they think of you for interviews, etc. This happened to me last week and I joyfully accepted an offer to be interviewed about my writing journey as it pertains to the London Writers Society. Thank you, Pat! You can find the article here.
4. Business cards are so convenient to give people your email, your website, and your book titles. You can do your own easily and print them out as you need them. This means you can update them and don’t have to throw out 450 of a 500 order because your website has changed. Be sure to get the great quality ones which snap apart after you print them and leave no telltale nubbies.
5. Offer to do talks for groups on topics which relate to your books. Church groups, seniors groups, school classes, all depending on the nature of your book and the audience you’re aiming for. Of course, take copies for purchase and hand out business cards or bookmarks.
6. Make donations to events like the local music festival and make sure your name and ‘author of the greatest book in the world’ appear. You will be listed in the program and in any coverage of the event. As well, your name will be read out when the award is presented; in fact, you may even get to present it. The recipient will probably send you a thank you and, for sure, you can tweet the winner, etc.
7. Write a column online or in your local paper. Or even create a Fiction Friday news bulletin that you leave in specific approved places for people to pick up. Restaurants or medical waiting rooms have people waiting and looking for something to help them fill the time. Let them read your blurb where you advertise book readings you’re doing, signings, writing courses you’re teaching, along with other more general material with a wider interest.
8. Offer to do a monthly video show on your local cable station where you interview people in the writing business, do readings from your own writing, either stand-alone pieces or sequels.
9. Take your laptop to a coffee shop on a regular basis and write there. People will be intrigued so have a supply of business cards in plain sight on the table. Find a place where you are comfortable and the owners are happy to host a writer. It gives their place class! Remember J.K. Rowling writing the Harry Potter books in a coffee shop? This could be you.
10. Do a regular podcast where you might serialize your book. Terry Fallis did this and it led to loads of followers, the Leacock medal, a number of interested publishers finally, and now his third book coming out in September of this year.
Make sure your marketing forays are creative, upbeat, innovative and welcomed. People are not inclined to think positively when you have annoyed or worse, bored them.
What is the best type of publicity you’ve found to get your name out there and to sell books? What marketing ploys do you detest? Come on, now. I know you love telemarketers!