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TGR, Gutenberg, Rubric

March 2015

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TGR, Gutenberg, Rubric

Lessons from the Launch Pad—Partnering

As I mentioned in my previous post (The Hard Launch—What I Learned from the Dragon) building your email list and snailmail list are important beyond belief. But one of the things I learned was the importance of having other people on board and extending your list with theirs. You do this by partnering with other authors. This requires time and investment on your part way in advance of the launch of your book. You need to build equity in their lists. Sadly, this was a missing ingredient in my launch of Steven George & The Dragon that I hope to remedy with the next launch.

There are services that help you partner with other authors like Hasmark Services and they are worth investing in. The objective is to help other authors launch their books. In return, those authors will help you. Essentially, when the author’s book launches, you send an email to your list, post on Twitter and Facebook, and provide a link from your Website or blog. When it comes time to launch your book, these other authors do the same for you.

This involves a great deal of trust. Your name will go out as recommending another author’s work. A downside (for me) of Hasmark Services is that many of their launches are for non-fiction, self-help, and inspirational works—areas I am always suspicious of and reluctant to participate in. Upcoming launches in May include Wholeliness: Embracing the Sacred Unity That Heals Our World by Carmen Harra, 99 things you wish you knew before marketing on the Internet by Peggy McColl, The Parent’s Guide to Texting, Facebook & Social Media by Shawn Edgington, On Toby’s Terms by Charmaine Hammond, The Chemist by Janson Mancheski, Desire by Kailin Gow, Growing Up in Heaven by James van Praagh, and The Seven Spiritual Laws of Superheroes by none other than Deepak Chopra. I’m signed up to help both 99 Things and Seven Spriritual Laws. I am likely to sign up for a couple more in May that seem to be within the general category of what I write (novels). But a launch service is not the only way to expand your list.

As writers, most of us know other writers who are getting ready to publish books. Help them. Open a dialog with other writers, find out what they are launching and when, and be very upfront about partnering with them to launch your books. If there is a local author, you might even consider a joint launch. Most readings that we see are multiple author events, even when the authors are very well-known. Do everything in your power (as in mailing, posting, and linking) to team up with these authors and get the word out to more people about your book.

You might also consider a gift (copy of the book?) for each of the people who partner with you and exceed a certain number of names on their list (100? 500?). Based on the campaigns I have info on, this is not necessary, but might encourage local friends to join in. Personally, I’m exploring getting non-authors to join my next campaign. My local coffee shop, wine shop, dentist, and eye doctor all have mailing lists. A copy in exchange for an email blast could be well worth it!

These are all lessons I learned after the fact. If you’d like to join me on my next book launch and have me send to my list for yours, let me know!

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