Wednesday, September 5, 2007

Shameless Self-Promotion

No, I'm not shamelessly promoting myself. Although it is, and always will be, all about me. I'm thinking about the new emphasis on an author being a publicist too. Okay, it's my book, I should be willing to do what I can to make sure people know about it. I'll set up book signings and tell all my friends and family and so on.

A big part of the last Pikes Peak Writers Conference was about marketing. And there are books and blogs and who knows what else out there on how to market your own book. Some of the suggestions were:

--The aforementioned book signings
--Get your local paper to review it
--Get an interview on a local morning show
--Set up a website or blog so you have a 'community' who will be interest
--Come up with promotional tie-ins to the book. Say it's about a candy maker. You could run a contest with the first prize of a basket of chocolates or a set of candy molds, etc.
--Send notices to any email loop you're a part of about releases, signings, etc.

Those are only a few of the ideas. So when is enough too much? When do you reach the tipping point of just pissing off the people you're trying to get to buy your book?

Yes, I'm thinking of someone in particular. No, I'm not going to say who it is. I was actually planning to buy the book. It sounded like something I might be interested in. But I'm already sick of it, and I haven't read one word.


Jenny said...

I think that's one of the dangers of just advertising to writers. Have you noticed that seems to be the trend?

One thing I cannot stand is when people come into our writers group with a self-published (hell, or even not self published) book and basically give us their sales pitch. We're writers, dudes, we get it. You worked hard. We're working hard. But it's a tit for tat kinda game. I'm not scratching your back when you're probably not even going to show up next month. It's that kind of self promotion that gets old to me.

I'm sure that in every group that has the word 'writer' in it there is someone who barges in and insists that we should read their book. And that's their whole introduction. It's also not real promotion.

Hm, I seem to have gone on. I'll stop now.

Debbie said...

I'd forgotten about those people. The guy with the stack of books. You sort of want to cut them some slack and wonder if they think they have to audition to get in. But since the description of the group pretty much says you're open to all writers...Yeah, they're jerks.

-John said...

There is a fine line between displaying credentials, showing off, or shamelessly promoting.(yeah, a border among three entities, imagine 3D!!!) I think it's a matter of attitude that defines it.

I have mixed feelings about book signings. I once saw one, where the author called out to the store customers like some child selling lemonade on a street corner. I wondered if he was self-published, or his publishing house didn't get a huge response from buyers, or if his writing really isn't that good. Hopefully it wasn't the latter.

Too much is when there's the SAME commercial for it playing in EVERY commercial break during primetime network television, or the SAME pop-up ad in EVERY website.

Ali said...

It's a fuzzy area for sure. On one hand, you've got to get the word out. On the other, badgering people only makes them loathe you.

This is where the difference between smart writers and less smart writers becomes clearer.