Congratulations blogger/expert/reality TV star! Your book is coming out next month and we hope you are as excited as we are!
We know your contract stipulated a nine-city tour and a national advertising campaign, but this is the book business and it’s 2014, and we changed our minds. Nothing personal, we just can’t afford to throw our money away now that our offshore owners have installed so many
consultants assholes bean counters into what used to be our in-house cafeteria. Each freshman effort is going to be compared to Fifty Shades of Grey no matter how many people swear they’ve never read it, so your memoir/how-to/year-of-doing-something-different will depend on you and your mastery of social media.
You start the build here. Copy a picture of your book cover on a new Facebook page along with the publication date and your Amazon link. Post some semi-humble sentences about how excited you are for the publication of your first
real book. You may preemptively apologize for all the upcoming focus on your new book. Talk about how much you love the cover. (This may help persuade our art department to “LIKE” the page.) Get as many of your family and your friends to “LIKE” your book, “LIKE” your comment, and to write posts announcing they’ve ordered it already. (Now get them to order it already.) If When you go to bookstores that have your book in stock, take pictures of it and post them on your Facebook page with funny captions like “Look what I found!” or “I heard this is supposed to be a GREAT read! [wink-wink]”
Here is where the fine art of book promotion reaches its zenith.
You We will choose your Twitter name after we have conferred with our sales department. It will either be @Yourname or most likely, @Yourbooktitle. You have a mere 140 characters with which to flog your new book. And don’t be shy; this is the main purpose of Twitter.
Week One begins the Tuesday before publication. You start out sheepishly, tentatively promoting your book with its hashtag while saying something ironic about how your publisher made you do this, which everyone understands. Study the masters: @jenniferweiner (80,201 followers), @JoyceCarolOates (82,761) and @susanorlean (265,701).
Week Two begins on the official day your book is published; be sure to announce this using your hashtag at minimum twice a day. Losing followers already? Start following new people who may begin to follow you. Suggest to offline friends that they too join Twitter so they can retweet your tweets. Begin taking amusing pictures of things you see near bookstores. Even use your hashtag for tweets that have nothing whatsoever to do with your book. When lost for inspiration, we recommend that you retweet the sites that correspond to the interviews you wish you had gotten: @NYTimesArts @Stephenonline, @nprfreshair, and of course @Oprah.
Week Three: Tweet constantly. Use your hashtag. Are you signing books at Barnes & Noble? Tweet. Is someone giving you a party? Tweet. Are you going to be on a radio show in Detroit? Tweet. Do you have a cavity and are you heading to the dentist? Tweet. When in doubt, tweet—and always use your hashtag.
Week Four: Now you’re getting the hang of it. Start taking photographs. Of what? It doesn’t matter. Use your hashtag. Take pictures of strangers, of graffiti, of your cat. If you don’t have a cat, tweet your dog. If you don’t have a dog, get a cat. Use your hashtag. Tweet your cat’s review of your book. (Make it positive!) Look on the left side of your Twitter home page. You can look up trends and try to catch them before they disappear. If you are tweeting enough, you will elicit interviews with
radio shows newspapers tv programs other tweeters, bloggers, and podcasters. If you do get to travel in the service of your book, your job is to live tweet your trip: the smell of the taxi, the line at the airport or train station, the weirdo sitting next to you, are all wonderful fodder for your Twitter feed.
Week Five: By this point you will find tweeting as natural as inhaling and checking your Amazon rank, and, perhaps, your book might actually move.