Reality of book launching for authors, Part I
Are you fed up with banal motivational speech like:You didn’t fail if you keep going. Have faith? You honestly looked back through past years and calculated that amount of time and effort doesn’t equal desired results?
Then this may be worth reading.
If you are enthusiastic about marketing, successful sales person, entertain yourself with something else, like: go and get my paranormal novel ;).
The beginning of this story is not a prosperous one. Perhaps I could avoid many mistakes, illusion of having results I was hoping for, if I only knew… So the least I can do, is make sure you won’t fall exactly into my steps. Because I was doing everything myself with some help of friends every now and then, failing many times, it inspired me to collect what I have learned and I am passing it to you. Let me save you the time.
So here is, painted by me picture of how marketing/ promotion /publicity business looks like.
(You can omit this paragraph, unless you are curious about my experience.)
After doing and redoing my own website several times, establishing social media sites, being involved with a few groups sites, finding out about the experience of other authors and doing for years more of what is considered to be absolutely basic, required and necessary, it occurred to me “I am hammering a mountain with one single hammer.“
Unless you are enjoying “digging through a mountain with whatever tool you have,
you may ask yourself one question: is it worth it?
If you are honest and can look back facing how much effort and time you put into your promotion, you will have the answer if you achieved the desired result.
You know the 80/20 principle stating that only 20% of our action is effective. (“The 80/20 principle” by Richard Koch). If only we knew which 20% is effective… ;)
Don’t get me wrong, people do have successful businesses, win lotto, have luck, but how high is the percentage of people who “made it”? Most of us are “work in progress”, if not struggle on the uneven road toward the goal, convincing ourselves that any time soon, next year/s, we will get there… or something will miraculously happen… Surely something will… as the universe is proved to be in a constant movement.
If you monitor your day, you will probably find out what was bringing you closer to whatever you want and what was stopping you. Whatever you did, it wasn’t a miracle, but your own choices and action in the given, usually imperfect environment.
So let’s get to reality. I assume of course your writing business is not just for the sake of writing. You want to launch your book and you are aware already who your audience is, will be, your biography is written and all materials are delivered to your publisher.
Now you need 3 areas of marketing:
1. social media: presence, branding, promotion, posting, engaging audience etc.
2. publicity: I mean by that, all interviews, presence in TV, online podcasts, radios, newspapers, etc.
3. author meetings, books sign up, workshops. This is about anything where you actually get in real contact with your readers.
According to the above this is the job for: manager, event organizer, several marketers, IT specialists, creative writers, publicist, personal assistant, promoters, not mentioning a company that offers such service has already established trusted connections to people who can interview you.
This is why marketing per month costs around thousands and more…
For me it’s obvious by now that it is not realistic to be several people at the same time, aside doing your regular work, plus artistic, raising children perhaps, have fulfilling social life, and loving relationship to your partner.
What’s more I think that trying to do that is stepping into a territory of insanity.
For your own sake there must be a different solution.
And there is…
1. You need a team
First let’s address most common issue of why people don’t do it straight away: paying the professional team to do it for them. Money!
Law and zero budget makes you creative.
Collecting the right team of people is one option here. It’s very likely these will be students who need to gain experience but also benefit from working with you.
Before you assume that I am advising you: write a post, print and hang on the board at university of marketing, I suggest to give it a try, as this may feel as already doing more work that you can do. This may not be your way. But if it is…
In the next parts I will update you with more...