What does a good book launch campaign look like? What does it take to have a good first month?
Co-Speaker Authors and book marketing experts Cathy Fyock and Lois Creamer had just come to the end of their first month with their new book when I asked them these questions.
Do Both and Be Good at Each
The premise of The Speaker Author: Sell More Books and Book More Speeches, which came out in 2019, states that authors sell more books if they are speakers and speakers get paid better if they are authors.
The book suggests so many possible ways to sell more books, you will never do them all. Their message? Just do a lot of them, do them repeatedly, be creative, and have fun. Their book launch exemplified this strategy.
“Launch was great!” Lois began.
“Cathy and I reached out to our databases with emails. We flooded social media with posts on all platforms. Cathy excerpted posts from the book that we could use in newsletters and guest blogs. She created pull-quotes from the book and turned them into seventy-five memes that we posted on LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter.
We created bookmarks to give away when we speak. At the risk of sounding naïve, things went well, probably because of Cathy’s expertise!
“As soon as the book launched,” Cathy added, “I sent books to all those who provided us with testimonials and asked them to post selfies holding the book. I have been collecting these pictures and have used these individually and as a composite picture on social media. (‘What do all these Speaker Authors have in common?’)
“Then I sent them an email and thanked them for their quotes. I included their quote and a link to the book’s Amazon review page and asked them to cut and paste their testimonial. I’ve posted messages on social media thanking people for their posts and highlighting the number of reviews. My philosophy: Putting spotlight on my clients/authors is the best way to benefit me.”
The Year of the Speaker Author
They designated 2019 “The Year of the Speaker Author.” To promote that idea throughout the year, they:
- Designated themselves and their clients as “Speaker Authors.”
- Invited other authors to take pictures of their books and post them with the hashtag #SpeakerAuthor.”
- Gave away buttons that said “I am a Speaker Author.”
- Launched a year-long “Celebration of the Speaker Author” campaign that featured authors, their books, and a tip from each based on what they did as Speaker Authors.
- Created an “As Seen in The Speaker Author” social media campaign, which featured authors and their books that had been highlighted in the book, and these ran on the same social media channels.
- Developed a template for LinkedIn that said “I am a Speaker Author” that, Cathy said, “we offered to individuals who want to claim their authority!”
Book Launch Ties into Influence ‘19
Most important, they say, start early. “We started months before the book came out with strategy calls and assigning tasks,” Lois recalled.
In order to tie in with Influence ’19, the largest conference of the National Speakers Association’s 2019 calendar year, they made July 1 their launch date. That year, Influence ‘19 was held in Denver, Colorado, from Saturday July 27 to Tuesday July 30, 2019.
On Monday July 29, they spoke before a full house on the subject of how to sell books before, during, and after a speech. They titled their ninety-minute breakout session “The Speaker Author: Selling More Books and Booking More Speeches,” not accidentally the same title as their book.
The content of their presentation they pulled from their book, which gave them the opportunity to refer to it, and even read from it throughout the presentation without being sales-y.
At the end of their talk, they encouraged individuals to buy their book in the convention bookstore; the bookstore sold out immediately.
A launch party that they co-sponsored that evening was the symbolic culmination of the first month.
The Book Launch in Retrospect
During the following months, they continued to speak individually at several NSA chapter meetings, did guest podcasts together for Master of Ceremonies Warwick Merry from PSA (Professional Speaking Association) Australia, and more.
In looking back, both Lois and Cathy affirm their launch campaign’s success.
Lois gives credit to Cathy and adds, “Pre-work pays off! Start planning on time to put out prelaunch publicity.”
For Cathy, the book further allowed her to brand herself as The Business Book Strategist. “Since I continue to receive inquiries for my work as a coach, this book has been a huge success.”
* * *
This piece was adapted from Ken Wachsberger’s You’ve Got the Time: How to Write and Publish That Book in You. Ken’s other books may be found here and here. For book coaching and editing help, or to invite Ken to speak at your meeting, email Ken at [email protected].
New! Register today: Ken’s “What’s Your I-Factor?: Writing for Self-Discovery and Healing” interactive workshop.