Plan ahead and don’t ignore the convenience factor, says Susie Vereker. However, sometimes publicity can happen by chance. A visit to a bookshop led on to greater things: a mention in the NY Times. Susie Vereker is author of Pond Lane and Paris, An Old-Fashioned Arrangement and blogs at Transita Authors’ blog.
1. What kinds of marketing did you do as an author?
- approached bookshops both here and in France and Switzerland
- given talks
- entered awards
- approached local papers
- sent bookmarks to all my friends!
- approached relevant magazines re reviews
2. What did the publisher do?
The publisher sent around press releases and books for review to newspapers and magazines. They featured my books on their website and catalogue, sold foreign rights and entered my book for awards.
3. What did you learn about marketing?
Don’t be shy. Be quick off the mark and think ahead. Bookmarks are good publicity.
4. What did you learn during your experiences of trying to market your books?
Be as energetic as possible. Maybe sell first books more cheaply in order to promote future sales. People are often approachable. If they are not, don’t be put off. Go on to the next.
What is the most successful piece of marketing you’ve done?
The most succesful was partly luck: a personal visit to a Paris bookshop which indirectly resulted in a mention in the NY Times. Entering a major award and being longlisted also helped.
6. What advice would you give for authors starting out with marketing their books?
Have a plan and think ahead, but reviews should not appear before the book is available. A local or special angle can help sales. Consider who will be interested in your book. Don’t overlook the convenience factor. If your books are in front of people they will be more likely to buy.