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Discussion Starter #1
We just launched our 10th book and I still feel like I have very little idea what I'm doing. We have a mailing list, advance reviewers, and we have a promo schedule for our permafree first. But beyond that it still seems like we could be doing more to actively promote the new release. It mostly just feels like we're sitting with our fingers crossed hoping Amazon's algorithms work in our favor. And if there's anything I know from the last nine books, inactivity yields poor results.

Any pointers on other stuff we could be trying to raise more awareness of our new release?
 

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Put the new release on pre-order 30 days before release date so you can promo it on the day it releases. There are some sites that will promo new releases which don't have any reviews, or you can post the paperback a month in advance of the ebook so that your advance reviewers have a place to post their reviews and then you can use sites which require reviews, to promo on release day.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thanks Cherise! I've tinkered with preorders in the past, but this book was a struggle and we were working on it all the way up to the end! We're going to build more prerelease time into the schedule for the future, so I'll take some notes on your advice.

Blog tours are also something I've played with before, but they never seemed to generate much buzz. Both Elizabeth and I suck at social media, so it's been a struggle to use that. And Google ads seems like a rabbit hole of epic wasted time and money. Ack! Stresssssss!
 

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Nico,

I don't have answers, but I do have sympathy! We just launched our fifth SciFi book, and had the mailing list, advance reviewers, and a promo schedule with kindle countdown for our first. (Haven't tried permafree yet.) We also got blog publicity lined up, and guest posts, but I'm feeling like there's got to be a lot more I haven't done because I just can't think of it.

By the way - love your "sign up on the mailing list for a free library". That's an awesome way to use your permafree for the forces of good!
 

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Nico! I am releasing at midnight tonight, I am doing some family time tonight but can you pm me some details about the release like the pitch to readers etc and links and if you're okay, I'd be happy to give my readers a shout out tomorrow! I think we have some overlap and some of my readers will and do love Elizabeth Cole.
 

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Those covers are killer, nico :)

Hmm. A few thoughts, but you probably know them all. Stagger your release announcements if you can (I still forget to do it too).
  • Amazon release day, send emails of release
  • Three or so days later, make a big FB post on your personal profiles
  • A day or two later, hit Twitter
  • A day or two later, hit remaining social media
  • A post on your author profile (or do this one first?)
  • Paid advertising last (if any, of course)
  • Free advertising sources / websites
  • Blog tour to clean up
  • Blog post, follow-up, interview a fellow author, etc

Aside from that, network and socialize with friends and fellow authors? :)
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Sever, definitely a useful list. We're pretty good at staggering announcements, but still haven't really tapped into building author networks. No idea how those work, though Elizabeth has been participating on the Divas board. That's made her some connections. RWA might help her too if she can get the courage to attend one of the meetings! :)
 

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Nico et al .

It is important that this is not used in a manipulative way. But I find that the BEST people to reach readers is other readers. The elusive word-of-mouth recommendation.

I have observed (stalked in some cases) some of the most successful authors since 2011. There is one thing they all have in common: they make the ASK for their readers to go out and share the news. These reader shout outs do not go out to social media accounts with thousands of members, they go out to small, personal social media accounts. It is my opinion, that these small, personal shout outs carry very far.

When you do this, you need to have brought your readers WITH you. This is why I write live (sharing chapters as I write). I NEED my readers to be there with me or I fail. I'm not talking about sales, I mean just getting writing done. I am not a solo-style person or writer. This is the blog post I put out, asking for help. (http://elizabethannwest.com/pemberleypossibilities/if-you-will-help/)

This is not a "Trick" if you are not genuine, if you are not connecting with your readers on a personal basis before this request, this will not do much for you. But when I talk about success, I talk about WE. Because it's absolutely a team thing. I can't write without them, I can't get the word out without them. I do not ask them to pity me, I just ask them to participate.

I make sure to have a solid goal/hope for the team. I make it clear what I am asking for. I make it easy for people to copy and paste. This post has been shared by a BUNCH of authors I am friends with in my genre, and it is individual readers that are grabbing my simple messages and links and sharing them, even adding their own words to the message. And what is being broadcast is resonating with other readers, a new book is out in an established series by an author they can count on.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Elizabeth: We've been working on a similar thing, but it's not public. We share a lot of stuff with readers and let them participate as much as they want in the process. Our group is small, probably too small, but seems to be a good group. And Elizabeth gets great motivation from their participation. It's a lot of fun!
 

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I just signed up for the mailing list because I checked out your site and Elizabeth writes the kind of historical romance/mystery novels that I've been looking for! I gave up years ago on the genre so fingers crossed this is The One. (no pressure).

I've been opening all promotional emails I've received in the past week while I've been writing and to be honest, it's a miracle any of us sell anything. There is a lot of excellent content out there.


 

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That is the worst feeling in the world! You always wonder "could I have done more" or "if only I did" this or that. I'm by far no expert and I'm just starting my next launch and this is what I've got in mind, I'm sure you've probably thought of it all, but you never know...

1. About 4-5 months ago, I started post images that inspired me to my social media accounts.
2. This week I posted 3 teases about the characters in my upcoming novel and I'm holding a giveaway.
3. Next week I'd like to do a video of some sort, perhaps a book trailer.
4. The week after I have a cover reveal scheduled through a blog tour company and the pre-order pages go up.
5. The week after I will post an image to my blog and social media inspired by my novel.
6. The following week I reveal a chapter of the upcoming novel
7. Beginning of the following week I reveal another chapter
8. The end of that same week I reveal another chapter
9. My book comes out the following Tues, I have a release day blitz scheduled through a blog tour company
10. A blog tour starts two days later and runs for three weeks

I am also considering setting up a limited time price and some ads. During all of this I plan to be active on social media and engaging my followers. Again, I'm sure you have thought of all of this, but just in case....

 
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