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Welcome to The Book Marketing Action Podcast with Becky Robinson and Christy Kirk! In this episode, Becky and Christy share unique approaches past and current clients have used to help their books stand out in this world of noise.
Today’s episode was inspired by a conversation with author Jake Jacobs. During the conversation, we explored different creative ways he could build excitement leading up to his book launch. If you’re a Jake Jacobs fan, make a note that his new book is coming out May 2021!
If you’re not familiar with us, we work with authors to mobilize launch teams, which are people who will help promote the book when it comes out. When it comes time to send your book to your launch team, you can, of course, put your book in a package with only a letter, but some authors choose to include other items in the package to help their book stand out.
Why do we encourage authors to include a creative item? It’s really to encourage people to make a connection with your book. Often times people in launch teams receive many books to review. Including a fun item creates curiosity and interest in your book. It’s an easy way to drive awareness to your book which will result in more reviews during launch week.
Here are examples of unique objects authors have created recently to use in their book launch efforts:
- Brad Chase, author of Strategy First, designed poker chips to be sent out with his book because he uses the language “making bets.” The poker chips say Strategy First and are branded with the colors from his book.
- Author Chip Bell has a focus on customer service and innovating in a world of delight. For his book, Sprinkles: Creating Awesome Experiences Through Innovative, he included ice cream sprinkles for his launch team. For his book, Kaleidoscope: Delivering Innovative Service That Sparkles, can you guess what we sent? If you guessed a kaleidoscope, you’re correct!
- Cheryl Bachelder author of Dare to Serve: How to Drive Superior Results by Serving Others, created beautiful coasters to be sent to her launch team.
- Author Susan Fowler, who talks about motivation, created essential oils. It was so unique and unexpected that it really makes you remember the book.
- We’ve had multiple clients create branded t-shirts to be sent with their book. One author that comes to mind who has done this is Karin Hurt.
- Another item we often see clients send is coffee mugs or water bottles.
In addition to objects, we’ve also had clients take creative approaches by creating extra, value-added content related to their book. This content is released at the time of launch or as an incentive leading up to launch. Here are a few examples:
- Author Mark Miller created an animated video to support his book, Chess Not Checkers: Elevate Your Leadership Game. This idea brought the ideas from his book to life in an interesting, visual way. It was also great content to use on social media and his book page.
- Mark Miller also creates quick start guides for each of his books. The guides distill all of the actions steps from his books into a great resource.
- Cheri Torres and Jackie Stavros created a free conversation toolkit. Although their book has been out for a while, this free toolkit is still available on their website for people who are interested in implementing ideas from their book.
We have a lot of other ideas about creative initiatives that we’ll address in upcoming episodes. Here are today’s action steps you can take:
- Brainstorm a list of unique approaches. See what might fit in your budget or what seems fun and exciting to your audience.
- Sign up for a launch team. If you’re a new author or never been part of a book launch, we encourage you to sign up to participate in someone else’s launch to see what creative approaches they use.
- Follow other authors on social media. If you don’t have the time to invest in a launch, follow authors on social platforms to observe how they market their books.