If you are an author, you will not and should not have to spend too much time on promo. Here are some things you can do on the go, from anywhere and at any time.
Go ‘live’ on a FB group, your own page or on Twitter.
Just introduce yourself. Don’t forget most people don’t know you and that is why you are promoting, right? If you want you can stop there, and that’s about 10 seconds. If you want you can read a page or 300 words of your latest work, even your WIP. Never do a long reading. If people don’t know your work or your voice, they will not have the patience to listen to more than 1 minute. A short reading will grab their attention. In these days of prolonged “screen time”, never underestimate the power of the human face and voice. Think how many links people see and how many are actually clicked on. No one cares about links but people care about people, i.e. you.
Follow and friend request 10 readers and writers on Twitter and FB
These people may or may not follow you back, but they are your future audience. At the least they will look at your profile or your bio. Engage in conversations and say hello. Never upload your book link unless they are asking for links.
Take a photo of a book (yeah, could be your OWN book!)
Upload to Twitter, FaceBook and Instagram and write a paragraph about the book, keeping it to under 50 words. Your paragraph should be personal and not some general synopsis of the book. Talk about one or two points. Avoid taking photos of books you didn’t like and criticising them. I am superstitious of bad karma. Nothing good will come from sharing bad news so why share it?
Once you get used to promoting yourself in an indirect way, you will be able to do it quicker than 10 minutes and more often, especially when you get an audience who positively responds, engages with and enjoys your posts. All content builds your author brand. You want to be seen as someone credible, authentic and who is trustworthy. All your content demonstrate your ability as an author because they all require thought and taste. And yeah. Good writing. Be someone who cheers yourself and people up. HOT TIP #1: You are your own cheerleader.
HOT TIP #2
I will share with you came from my days playing ‘live’ gigs with my band Satsuma. I have played to 5 people and to 500 people. There is no difference. You play like it’s your last gig. Always share the real you and something people will enjoy and appreciate. If you are not enjoying yourself, your audience will not enjoy themselves either. If they love it, then it does not matter if they number 5 or 500.
The difference between a bad gig and a good gig is this: the audience.
Ivy Ngeow was born and raised in Johor Bahru, Malaysia. She is the author of three novels, Overboard (Leopard Print), Cry of the Flying Rhino (Proverse Hong Kong), winner of 2016 International Proverse Prize, Heart of Glass (Unbound UK) and many short stories. She lives in London.
#overboard #ivyngeow Tweet me: @ivyngeow