Promoting Your Children’s Book
Unfortunately, the hue and cry of: “If you write it they will come” doesn’t work in the book world. Authors, particularly new authors, have to create “buzz” in order to gain traction and develop a following of devoted readers. Fortunately, there are many, many ways to do this….some of them costing no more than your time and dedication. Use the following tips to promote your children’s book and get your book marketing plan humming with activity.
Get Online and Stay There
Kids today are very technologically plugged in. They know how to get onto the web, look up their favorite authors and books, and will come back again and again if there is something to draw them there. Creating a dynamic author’s website is crucial to promoting your children’s book, so take the time and spend the most on making it awesome. Get connected via social media as well, setting up your book’s own social media account rather than using your own, personal, social media pages. And the secret to this is…..keep it current and ongoing. If you have to hire your niece or nephew to keep it going…worth it! Keep the content fresh and updated, make the blogs interesting and entertaining, with lots of video and content, and they will keep coming back for more.
Get a Press Kit
A press kit will contain a number of items, most notably a short summary of your book, with a picture of the cover, purchasing information, and information about the author. Marketing platforms, planned campaigns, and the formats that the book is available in are all included in a press kit. Any notable awards, and especially reviews/testimonials are golden in a press kit. Press kits should be produced as hard copies in their own slick business folders for handing out in face-to-face meetings, as well as interactive digital versions (complete with clickable links to pertinent content).
Radio, Television, Blogs, and Webcasts Oh My
The internet will reveal a whole list of your local news and radio stations. Send your press kit out to them along with a type of press release. Have a sample list of questions that they may feel compelled to ask you…and make them REALLY creative and interesting. Reach out to blog owners whose content and readership would like your book or your experience as a children’s author to see if they would like a “guest blog”. Most will readily take you up on the free content (and you’ll get to link to your book for a quick sale). In this fashion you can set up your own “Blog” tour. This costs you nothing but time and it can spread your book’s publicity like wildfire. The same is true for webcasts and podcasts.
Send a nice letter (not an email) to schools that are within driving distance to see if they would like a visit from an author. You will not be allowed to sell your books, but you will be able to expose children to your book and drum up interest in purchase of the book at a local book signing (hopefully within days of the school visit). There are several places on the internet where you can list yourself as a speak for children’s events, and you can even speak to students via Skype or a similar platform.
Thinking outside of the box will increase your sales. Think about your book’s content and then find outlets and stores that sell products that would make great companion pieces. Catalogs tend to have wider circulation and if your book is included in it, your sales will increase. Some of the better ones include Child’s Work, Child’s Play, and Nature Watch. Contact the catalog’s merchandise director, send them a letter explaining your proposal, along with a copy of your book (and your press kit). The directory of catalogs is a great listing of all current catalogs in the world, but it is costly. Many libraries have it as a reference for free, however. There are also free listings online that can give you a great starting point.
Want to learn what it takes to become a successful children’s author? Get writing tips, insider info, helpful tutorials and book promotion ideas to get your writing career started. The premise of all Full Cycle Publication works is to spark critical thinking while advocating a love of literature.