How to get involved in online book promotion
One area that is particularly conducive to a publicity novice jumping right in is the online arena — blogs, discussion groups, wikis, etc. Although all publicity and marketing departments maintain increasingly large lists of bloggers, there are so many blogs that change so frequently, it’s impossible to keep track of all of them. This is where the author comes in.
Did you write a book about the Civil War? Or knitting? Or pets who are heroes? Look up blogs and discussion groups about those topics. Use a site like Alexa or Technorati to determine which of those blogs get the most traffic. Check the blogroll (the blogger’s list of favorite blogs) to find other related sites. Blogs that appear on a lot of blogrolls are obviously more popular than those that do not.
While finding a handful of blogs might take an afternoon, becoming a part of an online community can take weeks or months. Bookmark the blogs. Better yet, add them to your RSS reader. Read the posts regularly. Comment when you have something wise or funny to say. Get to know what a blogger likes to cover, their tone, how frequently they post. Get to know other commenters.
Right about now, you’re asking whether it’s worth spending the time to do this. First, if you had the wherewithal to write a book about knitting, please tell me you at least have some interest — book promotion aside — about what’s rocking the boat in the knitting community. And second, blogs and websites link. They link to small sites, which link to medium-sized sites which link to larger sites. Freelancers who write about knitting visit these sites. Print reporters who cover crafting visit these sites. So yes, it’s worth taking the time to do this.
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Fall 2012: I’ve really enjoyed writing about book publicity and meeting (0nline and in person) writers, publicists, editors, agents and others in the publishing industry, but I’ve — reluctantly — come to the conclusion that I just don’t have the time to maintain this blog.
I imagine there is some information that will remain the same and that will remain useful, but there is much more that is or will become out of date, so please keep that in mind if you find yourself perusing my posts.
For some time now, I’ve closely followed a lot of very informative sites about media and about the publishing industry. Since I find myself quite voluble at times about issues that pertain to my job in the publicity department at a large publishing house, I thought I’d set up a book publicity blog. The purpose of this blog is provide tips, primarily, but also information about publishing / marketing trends that will help book publicists — and hopefully others in media and publishing — do our jobs with greater ease and efficiency. Please note that the opinions expressed on this blog are my own, not those of my company.
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