Most authors today recognise the benefits of using social media to raise their profile and promote their books. In fact readers expect you to have a Facebook fan page, tweet regularly, email newsletters, blog, guest blog, have a webpage and, oh yes, write more books.
Whilst having a social media presence is important do not forget the benefits of getting out there and meeting potential readers in person. There are huge opportunities to do this if you are prepared to do a bit of ground work and market your event.
Here are some ideas to get you started:
Run a workshop at your local library – this could be a reading or you might suggest some other type of event related to the content of your book, for example if you book is set in Victorian times you might give a presentation about an aspect of Victorian life. You could choose to do something practical, perhaps making a Victorian styled hat; this will engage potential readers and raise awareness of you and your books.
Run a workshop at the local school – if you have written a children’s book then consider offering to run an activity at a school. Perhaps the children could act out a scene from your book, or maybe you could run a session on writing a short story. You could even collate the stories and self-publish them for the children, or their parents, to purchase.
Do a book signing at your local bookshop – as a local author your bookshop will be only too happy to accommodate you. Do some marketing to ensure the event is a success; also consider offering “something extra” to those who come along and buy a book.
Be interviewed on local radio – local celebrities who are happy to talk about their work, their book and their interests appeal to local listeners.
Be a guest speaker for a local group – if you can talk with enthusiasm about a subject related to your book – perhaps the topic itself, the location, or some character trait then there will be many groups happy to have you as a speaker. You may even get paid! In any case you can take along copies of your book to sell.
Now you will have noticed that these ideas are local (to you), that’s because the very fact you are a local writer makes you interesting. However, run a great event and your new fans will recommend you to other groups, bookshops and schools outside of your local area. Before you know it you will be in demand and, if you are in demand, your book will be in demand.
Get out there, meet your readers, and sell more books.