Marketing for Writers

read.gifFirst of all, I want to thank Erin D. Galloway, who is the Marketing and Publicity Coordinator for Dorchester Publishing, and Lisa Renee Jones, a fellow author and friend, for the help with my PROMO OR PERISH workshop. This Tuesday’s Tip is a just a small part of a workshop on promotion tips for writers and I hope it helps any of the published authors out there with their promotional plan.

Here’s some things to think about when deciding how to market your book and when to think about them:

12 months prior to publication:

    You know the publication date of your book and should already be brainstorming ideas for your marketing campaign. Do you have any useful contacts in publishing or outside of it? What authors could you approach for cover quotes? What are you willing to do to make your book a success—send galleys, get a Web site, finance a small or large contest? Will you be doing book signings or running ads?

    Make a list of all of these things and plan ahead to avoid a last minute rush. It’s always more expensive to do things at the last minute and what you do may be less effective if you don’t get the word out in time.

9-10 months prior to publication:

    Before doing anything, discuss your marketing plan with your editor. Editors present upcoming titles to our promotions/sales staff generally nine months prior to your book’s publication, and it is at this point that your editor should be able to relay what you have planned and what you’re willing to do to promote your title. This way, your marketing department will know what support you will require and can plan accordingly.

    Also, your editor can let you know what they’ve got planned for pubilicity so that you don’t duplicate what’s already being done.

7 months prior to publication:

    Your plans of whether to embark on a sizable promotion or book signing or to place advertising should be finalized. In addition, your editor and publicity department should be fully aware of those plans so that your company’s sales staff has the tools necessary to present your book to their accounts. If you intend to send advance galleys to booksellers, you should do so now.

3-4 months prior to publication:

    Send ARCs or galleys to reviewers. If you don’t have bound advanced reading copies, a photocopy of your author galley plus a cover flat and a short letter is sufficient. Also remember that the reviewers can be very busy and may not get to reading your book right away. Patience. They will get to it, but if you’re writing a category book, you may want to send the ARCs even further ahead so that the reviews will be available before your book is off the shelves.

Last but not least, remember to keep your publisher’s publicity department informed of your promotion efforts, whether big or small. The publicity department can take what you’re doing and help get the word out. Also, you can avoid duplicating efforts and save money by keeping them informed.

Hope this was a helpful Tuesday Tip!

Copyright 2008 Caridad Pineiro Scordato