Monthly Archives: February 2007

Online banners

Banners – online adverts – can offer a cost-effective way of marketing yourself and your books online.

The process of getting yourself a banner is relatively simple. Either:

  • Ask a designer to make one for you. Check out any websites you intend to advertise with, as they may offer a competitively priced design service. Don;t forget you can use the banners once they are made elsewhere.
  • Or create your own. Addesigner.com offers free online banners. You just decide the template you want to use and then customise the text/colours. If you’re on a budget they look ok to me.

Banners come in a number of shapes and sizes so its better to decide first where you intend to use them, and then design what you need according. Banners tend to be described as either static or dynamic, the latter meaning that they move. 

Banners are typically placed on websites, but can also be used in email marketing. The banner advertising space is sold in a variety of ways, usually one of the following:

  • Cost per 1,000 impressions (i.e. page impressions). This is effectively a cost per view.
  • Cost per click (CPC). i.e. You pay per user who clicks through your banner (to your website or wherever the banner links to).
  • Cost per month. Some websites offer fixed prices for a fixed time period.

Cost per click will generally be more expensive than cost per thousand as a click is regarded as valuable action “proving” that someone has seen and acted on your banner. When considering cost per month, consider the cost versus website’s traffic. Ask to see traffic stats if they are not already supplied.

In the UK cost per click starts from around 0.5p per click upwards, although there are usually volume discounts. However, I’d always recommend testing any banner campaign first so you can evaluate the quality of the response before commiting a large sum of money to it.

If you’ve a banner you’d like to try out on a general UK mass market audience, I’ve been working with a general consumer shopping website where I can get you 5,000 click throughs for £20! I’ve not seen any authors on there but it would be an innovative way to raise your profile. Email me if you’d like to give it a try.

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Business cards

So, it seems that no one uses Bebo!

I lunched today with a lovely author. At the end as we were leaving I gave her my business card. She didn’t have one. When you meet people – booksellers, othor authors, journalists – you want something concrete to give them with your details. If you’ve not got author business cards yet – get some.

Business cards should include your name, the fact you’re an author, your phone and email, website/blog URL and you can also mention if you’ve room your latest titles. With digital printing business cards are very inexpensive.

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Filed under A publicists life, book publicity, books

Bebo

Anyone on Bebo? Is it working? Email me.

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Rules for radio interviews

Radio interviews are a gift. They give the opportunity to talk in depth about you and your book. I’ve uploaded on MySpace an interview I did as an author on radio which did just this. I know this interview got results because the day after the studio called as they had lost the press release but were still getting calls the next day asking for the book details.

Rule 1 – always mention your book title. Repeatedly if possible, but at least three times if you can.

Rule 2 – make sure the station has your press release which must include information about where the book is available to purchase, title, author and ISBN.

Rule 3 – Speak more slowly than usual.

Rule 4 – Try not to say umm and ahh or any other annoying inflection.

Rule 5 – Keep the sound of your voice upbeat and make sure you vary your tone.

Rule 6 – If a question throws you, be honest and ask for it to be repeated.

Rule 7 – Don’t waffle ever. Take a moment to think what’s you will say before you start speaking.

Rule 8 – Prepare beforehand by writing yourself a list of key bullet points about your book you want to get across during the interview. One of these is the title and others should be the key hooks which you want to communicate about your book. Have this list in front of you during the interview.

Rule 9 – Also prepare by making sure you have answers to those typical but annoying questions authors always seem to get asked. e.g. Where do you get your ideas from?

Rule 10 – Your final preparation should be making sure you understand what your interview is about, the programme it’s included in, and who you’ll be interviewed by. And that you’re happy with all this. You don’t want any nasty surprises on the day. If you feel you’ve not been given enough information, get your publicist on to this in advance, or if you are doing your own publicity, call the station and speak to the programme editor, presenter or one of the researchers. They will be happy to help.

Rule 11 – While you are waiting for the interview to start make sure you breathe deeply and have had a drink. Test your voice to make sure it’s sounding normal – not dry or croaky. Suck a throat sweet if this helps, making sure to remove it before you’re on air.

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Filed under Author interviews, book publicity, books, radio interviews