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Archive for February, 2013

3 ways to benefit from events: Attend. Speak. Sponsor.

Last Wednesday, I visited a new (to me) women’s business group called eWomen Network. It’s a North American organization, with chapters in four Canada provinces (Alberta, BC, Nova Scotia, and Ontario) and 35 states in the US. Not surprisingly, California, Texas, and Florida have the most chapters.

The Phoenix chapter is under the relatively new management of Johnell McCauley – and she’s doing a fantastic job. You couldn’t precisely call the luncheon I attended a networking event, as it’s much more than just that – but you could definitely call it an experience.

The speaker, Cathy Alessandra, refers to herself as the Chief Innovative Officer for her marketing firm. She crammed a lot of excellent info into a

Cathy Alessandra

Cathy Alessandra

short, powerful presentation. Here are the biggest takeaways:

BE SEEN. This means showing up. But before you do, be sure you do your research, set great intentions, be willing to expand outside your comfort zone, and have a mechanism for following up. I’ve heard twice in two weeks: If you’re going to collect cards at a meeting and then not follow up, you might as well just stay home. Lastly, go with the intention of being of service, rather than selling. This takes the pressure off both you and the people with whom you’ll be connecting.

GET HEARD. As a speaker – even a free speaker at a weekly Rotary Club or chamber meeting – make sure you deliver a content-packed presentation with easily implementable steps. You will do your best if you exude both self-confidence and confidence in your area of expertise. Be sure to connect with your audience. If any of these seem wickedly challenging to you – start by getting yourself to a Toastmasters club, joining, and participating. Every speaker started somewhere – Toastmasters is an excellent place to get your feet wet.

CONNECT. Your end goal is to connect with others in a meaningful way. Do that AND be seen as a leader by speaking, sponsoring, or hosting your own events.

PLAN. As a speaker, you’ll need a one sheet (we’ll talk more about this in an upcoming post). You’ll also need to do your research to learn about live and virtual events seeking speakers with your expert knowledge. Set goals for how many events you will attend, speak at, and sponsor this year – and keep at them until you achieve your goals. Calendar these goals in pencil – and mark them in ink when they’re confirmed. Stand out from the crowd by picking up the phone and calling event planners, rather than relying exclusively on email. And check with prior speakers, vendors, and attendees to see what their experience was before signing up.

The main message here is that it’s easier than you might think to use events – and speaking in particular – to get noticed, sell books, and enhance your business. What are YOUR event and speaking goals this year? Please share them in the comment section below.

To being seen, getting heard, connecting, and planning!

Laura

__________________

We welcome and encourage your thoughtful, courteous comments below.

__________________Microsoft PowerPoint - Create a Fan Page 2013 ebook

Need help creating – or updating – your Facebook Fan Page? At nearly 200 pages, this eBook is chock-full of screen shots and details about how to create or improve your Facebook Fan Page. Includes details about adding a MY BOOKS feature to your page. Grow your Fan Page and grow your list of potential readers! Get Using Facebook Fan Pages to Market Your Book and/or Build Your Business today!

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27 ways to tell your readers you love them

Valentine’s Day isn’t just for lovers. It’s the perfect opportunity to tell your readers you love them. If  your book’s still in progresslove my reader and you don’t have readers yet, perhaps these suggestions will get your creative book marketing juices flowing for ways to connect with you readers once you publish your book or eBook.

As always, we love your feedback, so if you’ve got other ideas or suggestions, please share them in the comments section below!

  1. Share their fan mail on your Facebook page.
  2. Hold a Tweet Chat so you can get to know them better.
  3. Make a video to tell them what you’re working on next.
  4. Write blog posts they’ll love – even if they’re not necessarily things you love writing about.
  5. Find a promo product tie-in and give them away wherever you go.
  6. Use Rafflecopter to give books away.
  7. Do readings at your local bookstore and library – even if it’s a pain in the ass to arrange them.
  8. Share photos of your writing space/process on Pinterest.
  9. Create discounts so they can share your books with their friends.
  10. Reply to every comment on your blog, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, etc.
  11. Find out the causes they value – and get involved.
  12. You know who they are, so go where they are – street fairs, quilt shows, NASCAR, university quads, airports, dog shows…
  13. Ask them their favorite parts of your book – and create a Tumblr account to share them.
  14. Make a video of yourself doing a reading.
  15. Use Rafflecopter to give eBooks away.
  16. Share single chapters of your book on CDs or Minibüks.
  17. Hold a teleconference where your fans can ask you questions.
  18. Write thank you notes to those whose addresses you have.
  19. Use Authorgraph or Autography to sign eBooks.
  20. Do a Q&A with your readers via your Facebook page.
  21. Ask their input on your next book.
  22. Attend book fairs and speak or sign books.
  23. Host a webinar featuring fellow authors or guests on your topic.
  24. Share daily quotes on LinkedIn.
  25. Ask your readers/fans to name themselves (a la Parrotheads, Dittoheads, Cheeseheads, TroubleMakers, Trekkies).
  26. Create a forum for your readers/fans on your website.
  27. Offer to pay the shipping on your books for a week.

To a love of reading  and readers!

Laura

__________________

We welcome and encourage your thoughtful, courteous comments below.

__________________Microsoft PowerPoint - Create a Fan Page 2013 ebook

Need help creating – or updating – your Facebook Fan Page? At nearly 200 pages, this eBook is chock-full of screen shots and details about how to create or improve your Facebook Fan Page. Includes details about adding a MY BOOKS feature to your page. Grow your Fan Page and grow your list of potential readers! Get Using Facebook Fan Pages to Market Your Book and/or Build Your Business today!

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Marketing lessons authors can take from the State of the Union address

OK – just so we’re clear: this is not a partisan post. This is about the concept of the State of the Union address, a speech the President of the United States presents to a joint session of the U.S. Congress, typically delivered in January of February of every year. Last night was President Obama’s fifth State of the Union address, so it seems the perfect opportunity to study this annual event.

state of the union

Aside: Do you think Congress will vote to change
the word “he” after the election of our first female president?

In order to grasp the marketing lessons, let’s break down the State of the Union address, one facet at a time.

OUTLINE YOUR AGENDA. The State of the Union address reports on the condition of the nation, as well as allowing the President to outline his legislative agenda (for which he needs Congress’ cooperation) and his national priorities.

When it comes to your marketing, you need to have a plan and to be able to confidently, eloquently, and simply explain it, as necessary. While you may not follow it precisely – as life happens and situations change – a plan will give you an outline about where you’re going so that can avoid trying to blindly navigate the market for your book.

COMMUNICATE IN A WAY PEOPLE WILL RESPOND TO. Though the State of the Union began as a communication between the President and Congress, it has morphed largely into a communication between the President and the people of the United States. With the advent of broadcast media, the speech is now seen live on most TV networks, preempting scheduled programming. Once given during the day, the speech is now made in the evening in order to reach the largest possible television audience, usually after 9 p.m. EST.

How are you communicating with your audience and prospective readers? Do you know where they are, and are you going there to reach them? Are you reaching out to them where they spend time (e.g., blog, website, social media, Meetup), or are you H-O-P-I-N-G they will come to find you?

HONOR SPECIAL GUESTS. The President’s goal in the State of the Union is to outline the administration’s accomplishments over the previous year, along with setting the agenda for the coming year, in upbeat and optimistic terms. Since 1982, it also has become common for the President to honor special guests sitting in the gallery of the U.S. House chamber, such as everyday Americans or visiting dignitaries.

Who are the most important people in your publishing success? Who are your raving fans? Whom do you go out of your way to thank for their support? And most importantly – how do you let them know how much you value them?

LEARN TO HANDLE CRITICISM. Since 1966, the televised State of the Union address has been followed by a response or rebuttal from a member of the opposing political party.

You will never be all things to all people, so how do you handle criticism? Do you view other authors in your genre as competition or colleagues? Do you look for the similarities – and ways to leverage them for increased exposure – or focus on the ways you’re different?

Regardless of your politics – or feelings about the federal government – they do get some things right. I think the State of the Union is one of them. What lessons can you learn, extrapolate, or apply in your marketing efforts?

Laura

Resource: en.wikipedia.org/wiki/State_of_the_Union_address
__________________

We welcome and encourage your thoughtful, courteous comments below.

__________________Microsoft PowerPoint - Create a Fan Page 2013 ebook

Need help creating – or updating – your Facebook Fan Page? At nearly 200 pages, this eBook is chock-full of screen shots and details about how to create or improve your Facebook Fan Page. Includes details about adding a MY BOOKS feature to your page. Grow your Fan Page and grow your list of potential readers! Get Using Facebook Fan Pages to Market Your Book and/or Build Your Business today!

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Idea for 3-book set

How would YOU handle a cover for a box set that includes multiple products?

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Creative problem solving: Asking more people to do less

In the past week or so, I’ve seen three highly creative approaches to problem-solving that focus on requesting small actions from many people, rather than asking a lot from a few. When I saw the first, I thought, “Wow, what a great idea! I want to get involved.” When I saw the second, I thought, “That’s very cool. I’ll have to blog about it.” Now that the third has come across my email, I’m actually blogging about it!

Here are three strategies that involve reaching out to more people with smaller requests, thereby lowering the barrier to entry for making a difference.

********

A fellow member of a Facebook poetry group shared a link to Art4TheHomeless, a Georgia-based nonprofit organization that solicits artists of all types to donate portions of their income to help solve the problem of homelessness in America. From their website:

art4thehomeless

Art4TheHomeless is an Atlanta based nonprofit organization that unites artists of all mediums to promote homeless awareness in the USA. Our goal is to open an art gallery and venue spot where not only artists will be shown and promoted, but also funds will be generated to sponsor other nonprofit homeless relief organizations.

Art4TheHomeless was started as an art blog by a young lady. The dream of a young artist affected by Hurricanes Katrina and Rita was to give back to the kind people at the homeless shelter she stayed in Atlanta, GA. At the time, all she had was her own art. She went to trade school and learned about computers and started the art blog–and used it to promote homeless awareness. That original blog is still up and you can click here to see it today!

The thing that caught my attention was this:

Donate

Our goal is to raise $250, 000 one dollar at a time.
Imagine if 250K people only donated one buck!

Use this link if you’d like information about becoming an Art4TheHomeless partner.

********

Next up, Natalie Pace, a financial educator and personal Facebook connection, invited me to her event: $1 for 1 Day. The gist is:

The ABCs of Money by Natalie Pace

Amazon is hosting a $1 for 1 Day sale of my new Amazon bestselling book, The ABCs of Money, on 3.3.13. Mark your calendar and share with your friends.

Think about various orgs that might benefit as well. You could gift 30 books to a high school math class for just $30 on that day. (I gifted books to the girls in Kenya whom I mentor, and to all of my retreat volunteers, for $80 instead of $1200.) All you need are the email addresses of whomever you wish to gift to. If the org is a 501c3, you could receive a tax write-off on your taxes, in addition to helping others.

If you are not in the U.S., one of your U.S. friends can buy and gift it to you. They just need your email address.

If you’re on Facebook and would like more info, here’s the link: http://goo.gl/mqQqY.

********

Lastly, I received this email via LinkedIn today from Christina Mylonas, a Peace Corps volunteer:

As a Peace Corps Volunteer, I do a community needs assessment, and develop projects based on that assessment. The biggest problem for the villages in Kavango Region is a lack of things for kids to do.

I am setting up a library at Diyana Combined School, with space for social events like: story time, girls’ day and games day. The space will also be used for speaker presentations and movies.

Here’s my problem, and where you come in: The library has very few books, and what they have are well worn. The shelves were mounted against the walls, so termites got many of them. I’ve since moved the shelves in hopes of eliminating that problem. I’m asking everyone in my network of friends, clients, and LinkedIn connections to send one children’s book.

Why just one? To do a book drive would result in one person shipping and paying for what could be a lot of books. That can get very expensive and time consuming. Instead, you can grab a book off your kid’s shelf, or used book store, or even your grocery store. Throw it into a brown envelope, walk it to the post office and mail it to: Diyana Combined School kids_booksLibrary, P. O. Box 5061, Divundu, Namibia. The postage is your contribution.

Then you pass this email on to 10 friends. Before long Diyana will have enough books to fill its shelves. It’s a small thing to do that can make a real difference.

Thanks for taking the time to help out. For those of you who helped by donating to Andara Combined School, that library has been a big success. THANK YOU!

Christina Mylonas, PCV, Namibia
christinahelps @ yahoo . com

********

While none of these ideas may apply directly to you, as always I challenge you to find lessons from these concepts that you can apply to your own marketing, networking, and/or problem-solving efforts.

Two of these came to me via Facebook and one reached out through LinkedIn, so one lesson here is harnessing the power of social media. I also noticed that all of these creative thinkers are women. Gentlemen, where are your good ideas? Let’s hear them!

Here’s to innovative thinking in YOUR book marketing!

Laura

__________________

We welcome and encourage your thoughtful, courteous comments below.

__________________Microsoft PowerPoint - Create a Fan Page 2013 ebook

Need help creating – or updating – your Facebook Fan Page? At nearly 200 pages, this eBook is chock-full of screen shots and details about how to create or improve your Facebook Fan Page. Includes details about adding a MY BOOKS feature to your page. Grow your Fan Page and grow your list of potential readers! Get Using Facebook Fan Pages to Market Your Book and/or Build Your Business today!

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Why I want to be a TroubleMaker

 

Live-wired, straight-shootin, dirty-mouth'd, pelvis-pushing juke music ...

Live-wired, straight-shootin, dirty-mouth’d, pelvis-pushing juke music …

Here’s a portion of the bio of a band called Vintage Trouble, taken from their website Bio page, written by Nick Faigen:

Vintage Trouble formed in 2010 out of the ashes of a few other bands, and not by chance, Ty Taylor (vocal) and Nalle Colt (guitar) teamed up with drummer Richard Danielson and bassist Rick Barrio Dill. They entered The Bomb Shelter Studio, recorded an album’s worth of material in three days, which was intended to be demos and ended up being pressed into CDs. The Bomb Shelter Sessions became Vintage Trouble’s first album. Selling it at their gigs was easy and not surprisingly so were the calls to feature their music in several commercial media.

But they were just getting started. Unified in their decision to stay in Los Angeles to build the band’s musical foundation, the group quickly collected a lot of fans, who became known as “TroubleMakers.” Such underground buzz led legendary manager Doc McGhee to take notice and sign Vintage Trouble after hearing only a single chorus. Doc’s first order of business was to break the band in England, right away. Their first venture overseas resulted in a similar groundswell, with Music Weekly naming them 2011 Breakout Artist of the Year and HMV hailing them as their “Next Big Thing.”

Their accomplishments go on from there:

  • The band appeared on Later… with Jools Holland. This performance was one of the most talked about of the year, blowing up Twitter as the 6th most tweeted topic worldwide just hours after the show. The very next day, their self-released debut, The Bomb Shelter Sessions, entered the charts, becoming the No. 1 “R&B Album” and No. 2 “Rock Album” on Amazon UK—No. 6 on Amazon overall and No. 13 on iTunes, charting in the “UK Top 40” by the time it was officially released in July.
  • Vintage Trouble went on to play 80 shows in 100 days before an estimated 400,000 people throughout the UK and Germany.
  • The next three months brought them the opportunity to open for Bon Jovi in stadiums and arenas on the UK, Ireland, and German legs of the tour, playing to over 200,000 people in just under two weeks.
  • Guitarist Magazine ran a feature about Nalle, and The Bomb Shelter Sessions was named one of the “Top 25 Guitar Albums of the Year” by Total Guitar Magazine.

And last night, they continued their current tour, opening for The Who! at Jobing.com arena in Glendale, Arizona.

So why did this band catch fire as it has? Perhaps it was a case of being in the right place at the right time. But I think it’s more than that. It’s authentic talent. It was the decision not to wait for the results of a demo, but to release their first CD independently because they knew what they had was gold. It’s their retro look and sound. It’s the awesome photography and stage presence they have for a band so newly formed. It’s the catchy name for the fans – who wouldn’t want to be a TroubleMaker? After their set last night and at the end of The Who’s show, the band held meet-and-greets with the fans, willing to mix and mingle with anyone who wanted a chance to chat and/or shake their hands.

What does this have to do with you and marketing your book? Nothing and everything. You could say, “Yeah, but it’s different with music” or you can take inspiration from these four amazing guys. Visit their website and listen to the free track. Study the images and read their whole bio. What are they doing that you could mimic? How can YOU create a tribe of TroubleMakers that will help you sell more books and put you on the map?

Inspiration surrounds us daily. Are you noticing?

Laura

__________________

We welcome and encourage your thoughtful, courteous comments below.

__________________Microsoft PowerPoint - Create a Fan Page 2013 ebook

Need help creating – or updating – your Facebook Fan Page? At nearly 200 pages, this eBook is chock-full of screen shots and details about how to create or improve your Facebook Fan Page. Includes details about adding a MY BOOKS feature to your page. Grow your Fan Page and grow your list of potential readers! Get Using Facebook Fan Pages to Market Your Book and/or Build Your Business today!

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56 ways to use video to promote your book and/or business

Marcie with video camera

We haven’t paid much attention to video yet – but trust me, we will! Of course we reviewed some of our favorite book trailers, which is one very important way for an author to use video. However, there are many others.

The list below, much of which is borrowed from Media Pro Productions, includes a wide variety of video uses. Some of these may or may not directly apply to you as an author. If your book is an extension of your business, many will apply. However, if you’re the author of a novel, memoir, or other less business-oriented title, you may have to stretch to find applications. The goal isn’t for you to take this list and go out and make each and every video on here. It’s to get you thinking about new ways to use video that may never have occurred to you before.

If you’ve been using video for a while, please share the link for your YouTube channel (or other website feed) below in the comments section. And if you’ve got great ideas that aren’t on this list, please share those, too!

Customer-Oriented Videos 

1.   Video testimonials
2.   Video success stories
3.   Video case studies
4.   Man-in-the-street interviews
5.   Prospecting presentations
6.   Follow-up after meeting a new prospect
7.   Thank you for the opportunity
8.   Putting a name with a face after a phone call

 

Product and Service Promotions

6.   Product presentations
7.   Service demonstrations
8.   Product reviews
9.   Mini documentaries
10. Subject matter expert commentary
11. Product comparisons

 

Corporate Videos

12. Company overview
13. Executive presentations
14. Staff presentations
15. Virtual facilities or equipment tour
16. Board of Directors updates
17. Ongoing corporate communications

 

Training and Support Videos

18. Training videos
19. Instructional videos
20. Sales support “expert” videos
21. “Brown-bag” learning
22. Post-sales support videos
23. Maintenance videos

 

Internal Communications Videos

24. Internal communications
25. Event/conference/trade show communication
26. Employee orientation and “get on board” training
27. Health, safety, and legal issues

Advertising, Marketing, and Promotions 

28. Commercials/infomercials
29. Humorous video
30. eMail video
31. Content marketing
32. Landing pages and micro sites

 

PR Support and Community Relations

33. Video media releases
34. PR support materials
35. Community relations video

36. Public service announcements

37. Cause-related promotions

 

Event Video

38. Event presentation video
39. Roundtable sessions
40. Expert Q&A sessions
41. Highlights or “red carpet” video

 

Author Uses

42. Author bios for signings/events
43. Video blogs
44. Book trailers and promotions

45. Contest and giveaway promotions

46. Partnering with other authors

47. Speaking promotions

48. Tie-ins for holidays or special events

 

Other Uses

49. Recruitment videos
50. In-store videos
51. Company lobby/waiting room videos
52. Mobile videos
53. Market research/focus groups/polls
54. Website FAQ videos
55. Video white papers
56. Video magazines

 Laura

__________________

We welcome and encourage your thoughtful, courteous comments below.

__________________Microsoft PowerPoint - Create a Fan Page 2013 ebook

Need help creating – or updating – your Facebook Fan Page? At nearly 200 pages, this eBook is chock-full of screen shots and details about how to create or improve your Facebook Fan Page. Includes details about adding a MY BOOKS feature to your page. Grow your Fan Page and grow your list of potential readers! Get Using Facebook Fan Pages to Market Your Book and/or Build Your Business today!

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