In case you don’t know, I own a book forum. 😀 As it’s popularity has grown, I’ve also developed it’s connected review blog. This has all brought me into contact with various authors, publishers, PR companies etc. As much as I love well known authors, I also love finding new authors, and sharing them with the other book lovers I know.
I’ve posted reviews, guest blog posts, and interviews – as have others on the forum. Sometimes the author pops in to say thank you or leave a comment, and that’s always welcomed. Some have taken that a step further, and pop in and out on regular occasions. I like to think that they in particular have a good relationship with the book lovers.. and everyone benefits.
Promotion has always been important, but in our internet age, it’s reached a new level. And since the kindle made self-publication easier, there are a large number of authors out there, all trying to find the best way to connect with readers.
My advice? Get yourself onto twitter and facebook – get involved with readers, and let them know about your book. Publishers are also very aware that this works well.
If you’re really keen, and interested in your readers, book forums can also be helpful. Again, the key thing here is to get involved. I would hope that most writers are also keen readers, so join a forum you like the look of, and start to get involved in some conversations.
Now here’s a big piece of advice from an experienced forum owner.. take your time, get involved, and CHECK THE FORUM POLICIES. Sorry, I don’t mean to make that look like I’m shouting, but it’s important.
We have a clear policy on our forum.. we don’t allow people to join up just to promote. Others may be different. Our view is that we’re a community of book lovers, not an advertising service. If one of community members happens to be a writer or author, we love to support them, but we’re not keen on those who ‘promote and run’.
(Of course, that doesn’t mean we’re not interested at all.. we’re happy to consider your book to review, and I run interviews, give aways etc. It’s not all bad! ;))
Finally, here’s the one thing which is really uncool – please don’t visit a forum, twitter etc, and rave about a fantastic new book you’ve just happened to come across. On our forum, we have seen these posts many, many times… and in a very high percentage, it’s pretty obvious that the writer of the post is in fact the author, or occasionally a PR company. It doesn’t take much.. we can see your email address, we can use google, we’re not stupid. I can promise you that your post will be deleted, and I for one will never touch your book. Honesty, believe me, is good.. deception is NOT.
So, authors.. what have you found to be good promotion? And readers, would you be cross if you found a wonderful review was actually the author?!