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Throwback Thursday: Fear of Formatting

Tricia Drammeh

It’s Throwback Thursday again, and today’s recycled post goes back to May 2013. As I endeavor to format and publish a new book (wish me luck), I’ve been thinking about those self-publishing fears that prevent some of us authors from going it alone. Don’t let your fear of formatting keep you from achieving your dreams. If you choose to sign on with a traditional publisher or small press, more power to you. But don’t make any publishing decisions out of fear. Every aspect of self-publishing is do-able. If you’re a technophobe, it might not be easy, but I promise you can do it. Take your time. Do your research. And find people who will help you.

Read on…

Fear of Formatting

babe ruth“Never let the fear of striking out keep you from playing the game” ~ Babe Ruth

If you’re a baseball fan, you’ve read this quote. If you’ve ever seen A…

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The Joy of Getting Book Reviews

Susan Finlay Writes

Book reviews are helpful marketing tools for authors, but more importantly they give the author much needed feedback. They let the author know how readers feel about his or her books. Each time I publish a new book, I feel excitement about giving my book wings and letting it go out into the world, relief that I can take a breath and relax after months of hard work, and a bit of anxiety about readers’ reactions. I’m in the dark until the first reviews start coming in, and that can be a bit of a nail-biter situation. Will readers love it or hate it? Will they relate to the characters and the situations? Have I let them down in any way? Will they be hooked and have a hard time putting the book down, or will they be bored and stop reading? Will they want to read the next book?

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Indie writers should read this- How to Promote and Market Your Book

Excerpt from How To Promote and Market Your Book by Madi Preda

PUBLIC RELATIONS
Public Relations for WritersLAST COVER

Public Relations means getting mentions of an author or his books, placed in the media in any form, print, radio or television.

As a publicist in this changing world of digital marketing, I understood that more than anything, PR means communicating your message at the right time, to the right audience, in the right place.

As a PR agent for writers or if you are doing it for yourself, public relations focuses on building good relationship with different audience, obtaining favorable publicity, and building a good public image for the author. The essence is to talk with the right audience in the right tone of voice and build the author’s brand perception.

Public relation is an integral part of marketing strategy, which carries out a message to diverse categories of public: readers, distributors, journalists, and social media networks. These messages can be communicated across the world, online or offline, they must be crafted as smart messages to make a difference, generate traffic, and drive sales. They are key messages, following the marketing plan for promoting and build the author’s reputation.

Doing public relations, you shape audience’s perception about the author and I always prefer to talk in my interviews with authors, more about themselves than the book and do a promotional spot concentrated on the story afterwards. This way I make the readers to know the author, a bit about his/her personality, and his perceptions or thoughts on life’s issues. I think revealing author’s thoughts it makes readers to feel closer, they see that the author isn’t just someone who wants to sell them stories, is someone who learned lessons, someone just like them who want to share a story with them. Always in an author’s mind, there is something more than the words he put on paper.

When you do public relations keep on mind a few factors:
– you share information and stories that are worthy of sharing and that has an impact on your audience
– tell the story through emotions and humanity
– is your duty to protect the reputation of an author and his/her book, build and maintain a good public image for his brand and his work.
Be sure you get and offer attention

– When you pitch media make it clear why it should be of interest to the publication audience and if possible read articles of person who you contact. Making a short mention “I’ve seen your article about………….. and I thought you might be interested on……”. He/she will be pleased to see that you really do your homework and this recommend you as a person who know what is talking about.
– Be accessible across different ways of communication on various devices
– Provide useful information and support if someone contact you
– Try to build long-term relationships. You can reach your contacts when you need them and make it reciprocal
– Make your company or the author’s brand to stand out from a marketing perspective
– Respect online etiquette and don’t send mass emails
– Send a thank you note every time when you get a mention and share the article, favorite the tweet or like the Facebook post.
– Build a good relationship with other writers and bloggers, which works both ways, you offer support and they will do the same for you
Marketing and PR
“Writing a book without promoting is like you waved to someone in a dark room. You know what have you done but nobody else does”
~Madi Preda

Marketing and PR work at their best if they are used together, and I can’t imagine doing one without the other.

While marketing is doing market research, exploring, creating, and supplying information and products to fit the needs of a target market, public relations come in to report the news, or to promote a new product and brand. Marketing create responses that PR can respond to, attracts consumers’ resources and attention to drive sales.
Both of them deal with the end product (book in our case) at the end of a certain activity (the writing process) The purpose of marketing strategies is bring to market a book by presenting it in a way that audience will buy it. Promoting a book is about everything from market research to advertising and PR will build a relationship with current and potential customers, and create the pathway to market and expand. There is a saying that
“PR lights the fire, Marketing fans the flames”
~ Al Ries
It is hard to make delimitation between the two, they actually stand under the same umbrella and there should be no difference. All forms of communication are more or less integrated together and involve all available tools to sell what customers are looking to buy.

In a very funny way I can say in the end it doesn’t matter that much; you have what the readers want-the book and you need to make a plan and motivate them to buy what you have. How that is called is not that important from a writer point of view. An author wants and needs exposure and readers for his/her books.

Effective publicists think from the reader’s point of view and ask themselves: ‘”What’s in it for them? And then, the public relations come to influence their behavior and motivate an individual or a group to buy the book by creating interest and engage to action.
While all of the professionals make distinctions between marketing and PR, they all see them as related and using them together as the most effective way to build and engage the target audience.

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Fan Page https://www.facebook.com/bookspromotion

 

About the author: Madi Preda is a freelance publicist, who started doing promotion for books and writers when her husband published his two novels. PROFILE_PHOTOShe created publicity campaigns for many writers, traditional or self published, publicizing more than 50 books within a year of launching her first campaign. Her mission is helping authors to gain more exposure and media coverage through her online marketing campaigns. As a result of her experience she decided to write a practical guide for authors, or aspiring writers, in marketing, explaining step by step how to make a book successful from the manuscript stage to wholesale distribution.
Who is it For: Any author who wants to create and launch a successful book, or people who decide to run an online business doing promotion for books.
What It Will Help You Do: This guide walks you through the development of an author’s brand and improving sales of the book. Madi covers a wide range of topics: brainstorming, marketing plans for different genres, figuring out your target market and the right niche, designing a website or a media press kit, dealing with social media, using email marketing and having a launch to be remembered.

Related article

Interview with author Madi Preda

How to be Succesful Whith a Book Proposal

A few major steps you should follow when you sent out your book proposal to an agent or publisher

What is the book about?

Give a clear idea about the book in the very beginning if you want your proposal to be read.You need to present what is most catching about your book in a couple of sentences.

Who do you address?

Who is your target audience,what will you give them that is interesting and new.You can compare your book with others in the same genre and mention what are the new approaches of the subject, a few conclusions and how the story will influence the target readers.

Craft yourself a good biography

A biography should be included in your submission but do yourself a favor and don’t start telling them about cats and dogs and how much you love your family or how many children do you have.

Agents, publishers and media outlets want to hear about you as a writer, have you been published, where and when, do you won any awards, do you have a strong relationship with some radio or TV Shows,are you a contributor to some literary publications, magazines or newspapers?

What experience gave you credit to write about this particular subject and anything else you can think of which will recommend you as the right author for such a book, subject and genre.

What is your marketing plan?

This should be realistic and specific,You may know specialized publications that might be interested to put on an article or some radio shows which you’ve been in contact with in the past.

How do you see cross promotion in accordance with your subject and what are you going to do in terms of pre-pub promotion, before your book is out on the market (blog tour for cover reveal, free chapters uploaded on specialized sites, building or developing your author platform, website, blog, social media accounts).

Express your intention of setting – up a pre-order campaign and giveaway, and mention a few major reviewers where do you intend to send galleys or ARC .

Publicity after the release of your book

You still have to work hard after the book is released and this is exactly what you should do and what a publisher wants to hear.Tell them about asking for reviews, fan pages created, speaking engagement in your local libraries, launch parties if you are going to do such a thing.

You can organize a virtual tour in advance for the release day and tell them how many sign – ups do you have or if you have the intention to find a publicist to do all of this for you. If so say a few words about the publicist, a few authors who were promoted by him/her, mention a book which is succesful because this publicist efforts.

 

Membership

Everybody is welcome at Authors PR Literary Lounge and I am grateful if you  want to be part of it.All the members will be listed on the site,on a static page so the post will be there forever, with the  book cover and their website.

What is expected from you as a member?

-Put AuthorsPR Literary Lounge on your website (it will be ready soon)

-Support the other members by sharing their books on your social media sites or hosting a blog hop

-Review one book per month of the  members  featured here,the choice is yours

– Vote for the book of the month

-Follow the other members on Twitter,Facebook or their blogs

-Spread the word and bring new members

To become a member there are two options:

-Book one of Authors PR services and then you have free membership;in this case you will be featured on AUTHORS PROMOTION as well.

-Pay an administration fee ( 8 EUR) to be featured on the Literary Lounge and the money will be used to book a paid advertisement on a large audience site

– http://bookdaily.com/ for US

http://localbookshops.tbphost.co.uk for UK

-We will work as a team so we expect suggestions about how to improve our services and we need  a committee who decides who is the winner for the paid advertisement.

The blog is still under construction so some changes may occur.

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