I have a really reactive promo style. I feel like I just run around putting out promo fires. Like, I have a book coming out – quick, put it on my site! Tweet it! Somebody said something on facebook – go reply! Somebody tweeted. Tweet back! I’m going to a con. OMG get postcards or something to hand out! I haven’t put up a blog post in forever. Tap tap tap tap! My Annika site sucks. Run run and fix it!
I’m reactive instead of strategic. I know it’s bad, but I can’t get out of that rut. I long to be more thoughtful about promo. I’m too time-stressed right now to do this, but my dream is:
|This bird represents my elusive promo dreams.|
Plus, I like bird pictures.
1. Read all the articles I’ve been collecting on promo.
2. Sit down with a pen and paper and ruminate on what I have coming out, what are my strengths with promo, and what is smart for me to do in a year. Like, think about it!
3. Make a plan that isn’t reactive.
4. Make priorities.
I think this is what smart writers do. It’s certainly what smart companies do. Apple makes great products, but they don’t go, Shit! We have a new ipad coming out! Quick, get some advertising or something!!
I mean, all promo comes down to positive interactions of some sort, anything from actual interactions to fleeting impressions, or just a cover somewhere that reminds a reader you’re out there. And not being fake about the whole thing. So, there’s no one way to have an interaction. I think the key is doing what is meaningful for you and your readers in some smart order. Hence, the thinking ahead.
I honestly don’t know what works. I tend to be a big blog tourer and poster, though that’s something I am comfortable with, having come up in blogging, so it tends to be a default with me. I did my first ad this summer for an Annika Martin book. I thought it went well. I want to be more on Goodreads, because I think it’s cool – I have these visions of being more active there because I love talking about books, but I’ve never made a plan where I budget that Goodreads time in instead of reacting to the latest whatever.
I think nobody really knows what works, but there are good guesses out there, and I think authors have an innate sense of things that suit them. But none of that knowledge is useful unless you sift though it and think about it.
Get a plan, Stan! Er... Get a plan, Carolyn Crane!