The best advice any author could receive is: Do your research. Whatever stage you are at, whatever you are facing – research it. Find out the details from other authors and research the person or business you hope to work with. Find out what their guidelines and policies are, make a note of the person you will be dealing with. Provide them with exact and complete information.
Always research your market and query them in a professional manner before sending a finished product. Doing it right is essential - there is but little chance to make an impression with a reviewer, editor, reader or publication. However, even with the best of preparation you will be caught off guard or unprepared. Don't sweat it too much if you make a mistake. Think of it as a lesson.
Whatever we do in marketing the books, we always follow one big rule - Common Courtesy. Never make anyone work for anything. Make every option clear and easily accessible. Always follow up with your contacts with brief outlines of previous discussions so they don’t have to go looking for information. I believe that it really all boils down to deciding what would make you support that book if you were in that person’s shoes.
Keep records of your endeavors using color-codes so that at a glance you can see who needs to have a follow-up letter, whether you’ve had successes or failures with that source and if you need to provide anything to them in the future. Having short, yet detailed notes about each market (publication, radio program, journalist, reviewer, etc) will help immensely; some very important notes to keep track of are the theme or focus of the market, the audience/readers of that market and contact information.
Always, always use the signature options available on email programs, employ the reply button on emails, make sure that you have read and replied to every single sentence in their letter and offer more than what they ask for. Respond to requests for information or materials immediately. You’d be surprised how many authors query us for book reviews or guest applications for our radio shows that have incomplete, broken or improper sentences! Always make sure to use spelling and grammar in correspondence because you only have one chance to make a first impression.
Always remember in all that you do - the secret to marketing successfully is building name recognition, strong networking contacts and building lasting, symbiotic relationships.
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Authors - Dave & Lillian Brummet:
Towards Understanding - a collection of 120 poems on society, the environment & overcoming trauma. ISBN: 978-1413793376
Conscious Discussions talk radio show: http://www.blogtalkradio.com/consciousdiscussions