By Guest Blogger Robbi Hess
I went to a convention recently and listened in on a panel of authors talk about the need to promote a book once it's been written and published. The authors, though, had it a bit backwards, I think. Also, in listening to them they made it sound as if social media and book promotion was akin to undergoing a root canal.
First, I think you need to start promoting your book before it's even written. True, you might not be able to hold up a copy of the book and say, "buy me" but you can speak at conferences on the topic of the book. If you've written a book about writing, get yourself lined up to speak at writers conferences. If you've written a book about business, contact professional organizations or Chambers of Commerce to see about lining up a speaking event. You can talk about what is in your book and what the listeners will learn from it. You also set yourself up as an expert in that field -- you're speaking about it, and "keep an eye open for my book which will be released next year..."
Now that you've begun the pre-publication promotion of your book, follow that up with a blog. Write about your book (but don't give away the farm). Offer a free download (top ten tips, for example) in order to get people to sign up on your website for updates on your book.
Utilize Facebook and Twitter and even LinkedIn if you want to build a following and spread the word about your book. If you're looking for a publisher, they will want to know who your audience is and what you've done-- and plan to do -- to promote book and make sales.
Embrace the opportunity to interact with your potential book buyers, welcome their comments, gather their email addresses when you have a speaking engagement. Enjoy the pre-publication ride and you'll be well-prepared for promoting the actual product once it's completed!