As we enter into the digital age, the key to success seems to be developing a strong online presence. By connecting with your audiences online, you have the potential to reach hundreds, even thousands, of potential readers with the click of a finger.
Picture this: you’ve just started your author Instagram profile! You’ve set up your Creator profile, you’re sharing fun and engaging content about your book, and you’re using a variety of hashtags to reach as many people as possible (#bookstagram and #indieauthor being some favourite of ours!). Suddenly, your direct messages are flooded with reviewers; all of them telling you how much they would love to read your book and how they can help you gain followers and awareness through their promoting – all for just one simple fee. But, who is a reviewer, and who is a “reviewer”? Who will actually deliver, and who is really just looking for an easy scam?
Don’t fret – we’re here to help!
Whether you are published, in the process, or only just thinking about it – here are some tips & tricks for all children’s authors.
1 . YOUR AUTHOR BRAND
Your author brand gives your readers insight into who you are! Creating something that showcases your personality is key. As a children’s author, you may also want to show off a bit more of your goofy side!
Here are a few things to keep in mind when creating your author brand:
- Make it eye-catching and fun!
- GET PLAYFUL
- Use a fun background or bright colors
- Don’t be afraid to make a silly face
- Let your personality shine through – both in your photo and bio
2 . YOUR COMMUNITY
The average buyer’s age of children’s books is between 30 and 44.
Females make up more than 70% of these buyers. They are also more likely to discuss and recommend a book they and their kids enjoyed. In fact, buyers of children’s books are more easily influenced by the recommendations of family and friends than any other book category. For this reason, it is really important to build a loyal community of parents and teachers that enjoy and support your book.
Consider building an ambassador program or launch team! Also, get involved in your local community and make time to meet your readers.
Meet your readers!
- Pursue classroom visits
- Join children’s book festivals
- Participate in library events such as a read-along!
Physical distancing, self-isolation and quarantines during the coronavirus pandemic have completely altered our lives. We’ve all had to reimagine the ways we connect and engage with each other. With so much fear and uncertainty circulating during the COVID-19 pandemic, there is a great need for breaks from the news cycle. We are also spending more time at home now than, perhaps, ever in our lifetime. Indulging in a good story is one of the oldest and most enjoyable forms of escapism. Hopeful, cheerful, funny or just straight-up weird and quirky content can lighten our mood and make us feel so much better.
For authors, it’s a great time to promote and market your book. While holding book launches, book tours, book signings and school visits are not possible in a physical setting, you can take these activities online. Authors are using social media, and platforms like Zoom, to hold live events, digital book tours, and Q&As. They are partnering with other authors, book bloggers, booktubers and influencers in their space to share their stories and engage with their audiences.
Here are some ideas and strategies to consider on how to market and promote your book during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Book launch → Digital book launch
Considering using Facebook live to launch your book. It’s free and relatively easy to setup. Almost everyone has a Facebook account together and it’s likely the people you would invite to a physical book launch event will already be your Facebook friend. Facebook Live can also accommodate another person which is great if you would like a co-host, emcee or someone to introduce you.
Marketing your book requires branding. Putting aside that nearly 70% of brands are using Instagram as a marketing tool and that it boasts an impressive worldwide user count of 700 million, humans are 90% visual beings able to process images 60,000 times faster than text.
But we’re in the business of books and you’ve recently published a book that may be more than a little too word-heavy to be considered a “picture book”. So, how can an image-based app like Instagram be useful to you as an author?
Social media gurus would say, if you’re not active on social media, you don’t exist. Active social media doesn’t just mean hosting a website or having a Facebook account. Today, being active online means posting content often and engaging with other users on all major platforms – the big three being Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram. Let’s focus on how authors can best utilize a picture-driven platform like Instagram.
Instagram is fun! It offers the opportunity for you as an author to give readers and fellow writers an insight into who you are as an individual, your process, your life beyond the cover of a book and a brief description of yourself. While Instagram certainly can be an enjoyable app with many cool features, like the rules of writing, you’ve got to know them in order to break them.
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