Tuesday, April 4, 2017

5 Tips for Promoting Your Author Event on Social Media

Me, signing books at my local library
If you are self-publishing, or even if you are being published traditionally, public events such as talks, book signings, and readings are a must. Nothing creates more fans than your physical presence. People want to sit in an audience and hear you speak. They want to crowd around you afterwards, asking you to sign copies of your book. They want to shake your hand, ask you questions, give you their first born child. (Okay, maybe that's taking it a bit too far. But you get the picture.)

Simply scheduling a talk or a signing is not enough. Like everything else you do to promote your book, your author event will have to be advertised. You will, of course, send out a press release to the local papers.

But what about all the people who only know you virtually? That group is important as well.

1) Twitter. Before you do anything else, create a hashtag and use it on every tweet that concerns your book - including author events. Keep your hashtag short and memorable. Make sure you look up your hashtag to make sure it hasn’t already been used.

2) Facebook event page. Event pages are easy to set up on Facebook. (Read how to do it HERE.) Your event page should include information about the event (when and where). You can post photos, invite guests, and (best of all) keep track of who is interested. Make sure people can leave comments and post on your page. Remember to put links to your home page on Facebook, as well as sales links, in the details section.

Here is a helpful article13 Ways to Use Facebook Events for Your Brand

3) Live coverage. Live coverage of events is exciting! If your friends are attending the event, ask them tweet during the event using your event hashtag. Enlist a friend to photograph the event and post images. Let Facebook friends and twitter followers know in advance when live coverage is taking place.

4) Join groups. There are all kinds of groups for writers: Facebook groups, Google Plus communities, even LinkedIn. Promotions are allowed in many of these groups, not just for book releases but for events. The advantage to promoting your events on groups is reach (especially Facebook).

Helpful article47 Facebook Groups for Authors

5) Make a video. If you have a smartphone you can make a short clip (a teaser) to promote your event. For example, you can do some "man on the street" interviews with people who are going (friends, family). Have them answer the question, "Why are you going to ___?" Make it fun, or better yet, funny. (You can even use a free animation maker like PowToon to make a cartoon!) Post these videos on Twitter, Facebook, and anywhere else you have an account.

Here is the Video for Phillip Pullman's book event 

Remember:

Bring a sign-up sheet to your event. Everyone who shows up is a potential fan!

Bring extra books. Even if the event is hosted by a bookstore, they may run out. If the event is hosted by a restaurant (I've had restaurant venues), a sporting goods store, a library, or anyplace else not likely to have a stack of your books on hand - bring lots!

Have a good time. I love talking to people who've read my books. The best part is that they love talking to me, too!

For more info on book tours see: Arranging Your Own Book Tour

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