Saturday, October 22, 2011

Book marketing - is there ever enough?

Okay, I’m on to another marketing project. 

I was overwhelmed and indeed impressed by the numbers of blogs Jessica Bell is going to visit during her two-week book launch blog tour for her soon to-be-released, String Bridge. And that got me thinking I hadn’t visited nearly enough blogs at the time of my book launch. I visited one blog a day for about three weeks, and she’s going to have interviews and reviews on up to seven or eight blogs a day for two weeks. Plus she’s going to have a whole lot of these same folks and more hit Amazon on the day of the book’s release. Now that’s using the network to the fullest, I would say.

With my friend Susan at my book launch 
with Ben in the background

I asked her how she amassed such a list and she admitted it was a lot of work. She reads and comments on all the blogs on her list regularly. And that’s why she felt she was justified in asking them to do this book marketing favor for her.

I know that’s true. Jessica visits and comments on my blog consistently, plus she read my book and wrote an incredible review that she posted on her own blog, The Alliterative Allomorph and on Amazon and Goodreads. That’s what I call being supportive. The goal of it is to sell books and not just one’s own.

As she sees it, we can all play a part in promoting each other’s books. On Tuesday we’ll all get a chance to do that on the Internet Book Fair. I’ll not only promote mine, but I’ll pick a couple of my writing colleagues’ books to promote as well. Come back on Wednesday and you’ll find out which ones.

So now that I have all this information and this need to be a copycat, it’s time to do something about it. Yesterday I started a list of blogs I’m familiar with, and today I transferred the list into a two-column word table with the name of the blog owner and email address in one column and the name of the blog and its link in the second. So far I’m up to over fifty candidates and still counting. I really was surprised how many I have just in my own frame of reference, and Jessica says I can go to hers if they seem appropriate for my book. Looking at her list, I’ve already found several that we have in common.

But that’s just the beginning. I need to, as Jessica suggested, be more consistent in reading and commenting on all these blogs. That’s the hard work. And that’s why I need quite a bit of lead-time.

I had originally thought I’d schedule this second blog tour at the six-month anniversary of the launch of my book, but that’s way to soon. Now I’m thinking I’ll kick it off at the time my eBook comes out – sometime next spring. That way I’ll have time to develop and reconnect with the blogs on my list and the ones still to be added. I’ll also need to set up a plan, after contacting everyone, about whether I’ll provide a guest post or answers to a questionnaire. Plus the blog owners who will review the book will have time to read it.

All that will take a lot of coordinating, so I’m thinking of asking my high school senior girlfriend if she’d like to assist me. I know I’d do a much more thorough and complete job if I have some help.

I think the moral of this story is that it takes lots and lots of time and attention to details to market a book. If I let myself I could be at it all day without any time left to write. I need to enter into this project with time for both.

5 comments:

Glynis said...

I am in awe of Jessica and Talli Roland. They both promote themselves well. Also they are so supportive of others. I am lucky to have them on my side.

Marketing is a huge part of the writing world now and it can be daunting. Blog comments go a long way to gaining recognition and support. Good luck.

Jessica Bell said...

Wow, Madeline. Thank you so much. I'm just so pleased that I can be of some help to you! You can call on me any time and I will always do what I can to assist you. You are a remarkable woman with a remarkable book and it SHOULD be read! :o) Lots of love, xoxox

Madeline Sharples said...

Thank you Glynis. You're right it is daunting. But I now at least have a plan and a long go-to list. I hope you don't mind being on it.

Jessica, I quoted you when I posted this on Red Room. Thanks so much for your offer of help.

xoxo Madeline

J.L. Campbell said...

What you say is so true. Although I have a book scheduled for release in December, I'll probably do my tour over a longer stretch of time so I don't burn out. Writers never cease to amaze me. Just hint that you need help and you have way more offers that you anticipated.

Madeline Sharples said...

Thanks so much, J.L. Even when I was revising my book I was never without wonderful help. I had a village of experts and friends always at my side.