The Power of the Group: THANKSGIVING Traits to Look for in a Book Marketing Partner
I recently completed the 2016 NO EXCUSES 3-Week Author Blog Challenge. As its title suggests, it was a 21-day challenge, and I was the host. Which means I came up with each day’s writing prompts. Although this was my fourth go-round with the Author Blog Challenge, it was the first time I really got an extreme amount of value out of considering the marketing for my forthcoming novel, Stan Finds Himself on the Other Side of the World, in a new way.
One of the prompts that really got my creative juices boiling:
Who would be the perfect person/company/organization to partner with to sell your book? It might be another author, a performer, a shop owner, a seminar facilitator, a teacher, etc. Pretty much, the answer to this question is limited only by your imagination. How will you reach out to that person/company/organization? What’s the hook for your pitch?
You can read the post in which I answered this question on my blog, StanTravels.com.
Since tomorrow is Thanksgiving, I thought I’d combine the idea of a great book marketing partner with this traditional holiday for today’s Power of the Group post. The following are the character traits I think any good book marketing partner should have – one for each letter in the word THANKSGIVING.
TRUST. You want a partner you can trust – and who can trust you. Perform your due diligence first – make sure you want to be associated with this person, going forward, as you may be heading into a long-term relationship with them.
HELPFULNESS. One of the worst feelings in the world is counting on someone who can’t or won’t pull their weight – especially in a partnership. Your book marketing partner doesn’t have to be a mind-reader, but they should be helpful when it’s practical or essential.
ATTITUDE. You don’t need to find someone who thinks just like you, but you definitely want to partner with someone whose attitude complements yours. Preferably a positive outlook – things are possible, regardless of what’s happened in the past.
NETWORK. Ideally, you will partner with someone who brings a decent-sized network to your book marketing endeavors. Whether that’s a big email list, a large social media following, or loads of blog subscribers – they already have a head-start, so when you pair your network with theirs, sparks will sizzle.
KNOWLEDGE. No author – regardless of how successful they may be – is ever likely to know everything there is to know about book marketing, if for no other reason than that the landscape is always changing. Yet there are some marketing constants, and it’s good to work with someone who knows a thing or two about it. In the best-case scenario, your partner will be strong in the areas where you have weaknesses, and vice-versa.
SUCCESS (OR A SUCCESS MINDSET). We hit on this a little bit in the section on ATTITUDE, but a success mindset is crucial. You’ll hit the jackpot if you find a marketing partner who’s already has a measure of success, because like attracts like (law of attraction) and success tends to breed more success. But even if they haven’t hit the Amazon bestseller list yet, if they have a success mindset, anything remains possible.
GENUINENESS. This may be my own preference, but it seems to me that being yourself will always carry you a lot further than pretending to be (a) something you’re not and/or (b) something you think other people want you to be. Great marketing is the process of putting a product in front of someone at the precise moment they want to buy it. It’s not about conning them into a sale using tricks and gimmicks. The truer you – and your partner – are to your real values, the more likely you are to connect with the readers who are waiting for your books.
INTELLIGENCE. It’s not always the smartest person who wins the game (or the best product that succeeds). And yet a certain amount of know-how is imperative for marketing success. The great thing is that your partner may be able to fill the gaps where you lack particular knowledge or skill – or together you can hire out the stuff that takes you away from the things you are good at.
VERVE. Book marketing is a long process. It’s not an overnight, one-and-done step to success. So you’ll need a partner with loads of energy and enthusiasm. Beware the person you need to cajole or convince to try a new tactic because they’re just too lethargic to put any effort into it. Practical concerns are one thing – and worthy of consideration – but an attitude of “Eh…” is a red flag.
IMAGINATION. Book marketing is not rocket science. No marketing is. Some concepts hit and some miss, but the important thing the ability to come up with new ideas to try. Consistency is definitely a cornerstone of marketing success, but new places to sell your book, new speaking engagements, new contest ideas and social media tactics are equally important.
NERVE. Yep – it rhymes with verve. But it’s a radically different element – in that you’ve got to be willing to take some risks. As the famous Will Rogers quote puts it, “Even if you’re on the right track, you’ll get run over if you just sit there.” You’ve got have the nerve to put those new ideas into action, pick up the phone and call that shop, reach out to ask for that review, etc.
GRATITUDE. Well, it is Thanksgiving, after all. And one thing I’ve found is that the more gratitude I feel, the more I have to be grateful for. So look for a partner who comes from a place of gratitude. Do they ask the waiter’s name and thank them? Do they tell you how grateful they are for the people and experiences in their life? Or do they complain, blame, or shame? If it’s the latter, run! If they have an attitude of gratitude, they may make the perfect partner.
Wishing a blessed and bountiful holiday to you, your friends, and your family.
LAURA ORSINI is a self-publishing consultant who works with authors who want to change the world. From concept to publication to the first-time author’s book launch, her expertise will help you make a better book and find more readers. Laura is the organizer of the Phoenix Publishing and Book Promotion Meetup, creator of the Author Blog Challenge, and conjuror of many other author opportunities. She will explore the power of the group in her posts for this group blog. In the meantime, read her regular posts at Marcie Brock – Book Marketing Maven. Friend her on Facebook, follow her on Twitter, and check out her pins on Pinterest.