It’s that time again! And I haven’t had a release for almost a year, so I really had to remind myself what I did the last time to prepare. I’ll have to remember better this time…because Hickory Smoked Homicide launches in November! Ack!
I wrote a post a couple of weeks ago that mentioned some of the things writers can do to promote a release. Some of those things were press releases, book trailers, press kits, launch parties, Amazon and Goodreads pages, etc.
I realized that I’d left out a few of the things that I do, though, so I thought I’d cover them now.
Blog tour: A blog tour is a great way to get publicity for a new release. For one thing, it can really raise the Google ranking for your book title and your name. It’s also a nice way to have your book cover showing up on everyone’s blog reader—if you’re on a lot of different blogs, you’re definitely getting your cover out there.
When should you start the book tour? You should probably kick it off with the release of the book, unless you’re shooting for good pre-orders. And a tour can last as long as you like—and be as intensive as you like. I’ve seen some blog tours where authors have every date in a three-week period booked for an online appearance, and I’ve seen tours which were stretched out for a while, but with appearances every couple of days or so.
You can use different formats with different blog appearances, if you’d like to shake things up a little. I’ve seen interviews, guest posts, character interviews (where the blog host interviews your protagonist), reviews, and contests.
Stock signings: These are different than book signings…so different that I actually enjoy them. :) You just plan a trip to sign your books in the bookstores that are convenient for you to reach (or that are in a place you’re vacationing in, etc.)
Most bookstores have stickers at the customer service desk that say ‘autographed copy.’ You just sign your book, stick your sticker on the front, and then make sure they’re facing out (if possible) so that folks can see it’s an autographed copy. This can help your early sales numbers and get stores to reorder your book.
Social media: I’ve found that social media is especially viral. If you’ve developed relationships with readers and writers throughout the year, then just a couple of mentions of your release on Twitter or Facebook means that your friends and readers will support you with shares and retweets. It’s so much better than beating everyone over the head with your launch.
Have you launched a book? What did you find worked well?
And—thanks to everyone who offered to host me for my blog tour! I’m hoping that I’ve gotten back to all who offered and have sent posts to many of you by now. Here’s the blog tour as it stands now (and y’all, let me know if I’ve made any mistakes to this list.)
June 7 (and a couple of posts following the 7th) –Penguin’s Blog June 8—Confessions of a Mystery Novelist June 9—Thoughts in Progress June 10—Following the Whispers June 12—Anne R. Allen’s blog June 13—K.B. Owen, Mystery Writer June 14—Confessions of a Watery Tart June 16—Spunk on a Stick June 20—Alex J. Cavanaugh’s blog June 21—The Other Side of the Story with Janice Hardy June 22—The Creative Penn
Looking forward to it! :)