I am delighted to welcome Lillian Brummet to the blog to talk about her approach to marketing books. This is great stuff. Enjoy!
I was delighted when Rochelle invited me to write an article on my approach to marketing books. I’ve been in the world of writing for nearly 13 years now starting out as a freelance writer and book reviewer, later moving into staff writing positions, and now I focus on marketing the books 5 books I’ve written so far, running a radio show and managing a blog. With this background I’ve had the opportunity to develop relationships with editors, acquisition officers, agents, publishers, reviewers and promotional agents – and through these relationships I’ve learned three important skills.
1st: that writers have to put themselves in the contact’s shoes to really understand what they need from us.
2nd: to develop relationships with people in the industry.
3rd: to keep networking relationships alive.
While these points could really entail an entire book – I’d like to cover them briefly here.
#1 – Put Your Self In Their Shoes: Writers need to understand who the contact is that we are trying to reach and what the really need to see from us. We have to realize that these people are inundated with sometimes thousands of communications a day – and most of those end up in the trash bin. To stand from all those letters we need to prove that we understand and can write for their audience, that we have studied their site, their publication, and their guidelines prior to sending a communication their way.
#2 – Develop Relationships: We need to be friendly, yet professional in our communications – and once we’ve been able to work with that person we should keep in contact. Offer resources, recommend writers to them, continue submitting work to them – but never, ever inundate them. We can also meet people in the industry through social networking sites, meet with peers in the industry, join forums and chat rooms and listen to interviews.
#3 – Keep Networking Relationships Alive: Networking is by far my favorite form of marketing because it creates a sense of supportive friendship with others in the industry. Obtaining mutually beneficial networking relationships will take a lot of work, at first – but once we have a list of contacts we need to keep reaching out to them. At the same time we don’t want to bombard them and bore them or wear out their welcome. Unless I have a specific reason to contact an individual, I tend to send out communications to every one on my list once every 6 months to a year. So rather then reaching out each time something new comes along like winning an award, I’ll wait until I can share things like new networking opportunities, or a new look to the website, or several new products out. It is important to avoid having the communication come across as: ‘I want something from you’. Instead it should read as: ‘I have something to offer you, and perhaps we can work together on this project.’ I always close the communication by letting them know how important they are to me.
No matter what form of marketing or promotions that are going on that day, I will focus on these three rules and the results can be amazing. People really appreciate that I’ve taken the time to acknowledge and reach out to them, and later on they will often reach out to me offering networking opportunities they’ve come across, or refer other contacts to me.
The key to successful marketing is to avoid the self-centered thinking of: ‘what is in it for me?’ – but to change that to ‘what is in it for them?’
About the author. Lillian and her husband Dave are award-winning authors and owners of the Brummet Media Group (http://brummet.ca) – offering book publishing services from formatting to cover design, graphic design and promotion material creation, books and CD’s, the Conscious Discussions Talk Radio: http://www.blogtalkradio.com/consciousdiscussions and the Brummet’s Conscious Blog: http://www.consciousdiscussions.blogspot.com Lillian invites you to network with her via her radio show, or her blog where you can submit articles or poetry for consideration, or for a World of Writing interview. When you have time check out the new edition of: Purple Snowflake Marketing – How to Make Your Book Stand Out In A Crowd, via http://brummet.ca