Today’s stop is on the Blogging Authors blog. I give most of my favorite marketing tips, but there are always a few other things to discuss. Marketing is a never-ending job. Take this book tour, for instance. It’s a way for me to get the book (and, by extension, the series) in front of a lot of eyes who might not hear about it otherwise. Pump Up Your Book is an award-winning marketing service that does a great job building a promotional tour for you. That’s definitely a great way to go if you have the resources.
If your budget is a little tighter, then check out the opportunities through 4imprint for interesting and clever promo items. For paper goods like business cards or postcards, I like VistaPrint. As I say in the guest post linked above, I don’t give out pens fast enough to make them a good marketing tool, but if you go to a lot of events, people really do tend to gravitate to them on the “freebie” table. When I did buy pens, I liked National Pen for those. For stickers or bumper stickers, a good place to go is 123Stickers.
Think outside the box when you look at your book. What is something special that you can highlight? For one of my books, the YA The Right Hand of Velachaz, I bought a lot of little insect-shaped erasers from Oriental Trading Company and put them in little plastic bubbles like you used to see in the bubblegum machines. Then I put them in a larger container. Kids got to pick an eraser out of the container, and if they got a dragonfly (which featured in the book) they won a prize. Otherwise, they got an eraser. Win-win.
For another set of stories, I got these little pins with flashing lights on them. I thought they were so cool–until someone cautioned me that they could be detrimental to epileptics. So…I stopped giving those out. You have to be careful of such things.
If you are looking for a bigger prize, like for a giveaway, CafePress or Zazzle can let you create something cool. For example, here is my CafePress shop for the Chronicles. One of the mugs would make a nice prize. And, of course, everyone loves an Amazon gift card. The cool thing about those is that you can send it virtually when you get home. 😉
Promotion and marketing is all part of the author’s job too. Unless you can hire a full-time publicist…and that is a dream that most of us can’t afford.