Yesterday we brought you part 1 of our guest blog post from Audible editor Jessica. Part 2 is below and contains a lot more great info. Authors, be sure to share these posts with your producers and vice versa. Double your efforts and really drive your sales!
4. Network, network, network. Building a base of contacts is essential to helping you get the word out about your audiobook. However, what many people overlook is that networking is about exchange—of information, contacts, and advice. In his book, Booklife: Strategies and Survival Tips for the 21st Century Writer, Jeff VanderMeer shares the following tips for successful networking:
- Keep in mind that everyone you know is a potential contact and everyone you know is more than one thing—keep your eyes open to this to understand each contact’s potential.
- Realize that every (audio)book or project you create is about more than one thing—a quick Internet search of the topics your book covers can reveal a wealth of relevant groups, communities, and forums you can join to find others who would be interested in what you have to say.
- Take a genuine interest in what others are saying/writing/telling you. Networking is about a give and take and you have to nurture your contacts. Coming across as sympathetic to and interested in what others have to say, as well as being able to add a personal touch in your communications will go a long way towards building long-term relationships.
- Be concise and precise in your communication with people you don’t know, particularly if using a medium like email which strips out nuance.
- Do introduce your contacts to one another—if you connect people, they’ll remember you for it and be more likely to help connect you to their contacts. However, respect others’ privacy and don’t give out contact information without first getting approval to do so.
- If nervous about a face-to-face introduction, project confidence by saying less, listening more, and starting off with questions, rather than launching into talking about yourself. It may also help to have a partner, spouse, or friend along to help take the pressure off.
**Also, take advantage of the biggest network for books: Amazon. Amazon is a powerful tool for growing your fan base and increasing your sales; click here to learn how you can better leverage Amazon to increase visibility of your audiobook.
5. Cultivate review coverage. Research and reach out to appropriate online publications, blogs and podcasts. Promoting your audiobook(s) can be time-consuming and we know many authors/producers have full-time jobs, families, and other commitments, but active engagement in promoting your audiobook is a key factor in its success. Look into online publications, websites, blogs or podcasts that might be interested in your book’s topic or genre, or audiobooks in general, and reach out to them and offer something of value: a review copy, an excerpt from the audio to post on their site, or, depending on the reach of the outlet, a copy of the audio to give away to readers. You can also offer editorial content (a Q&A, a guest blog post on a topic, offer to lead a webinar/online chat, etc.) . Be prepared to explain why the topic you’re proposing would be relevant to an outlet’s readers, and be open to any suggestions you may receive.
- Potential offline opportunities (for the A+ student): It’s also worth reaching out to local bookstores and libraries for speaking engagements as a way to generate attention and word-of-mouth. Take note, though: people attend speaking engagements because they want to gain knowledge about something of importance to them, so keep that in mind while crafting your speech. Also, research and reach out to book clubs that might be interested in reading/listening to your book, and offer up author participation.
6. Keep in contact with the ACX team to let them know what successes you’ve achieved. You can share your feedback at email@example.com.
7. And lastly, stay focused:
- Continue networking as appropriate.
- Maintain your blog/website.
- Continue to offer to participate in book club discussions of your book(s) and speaking engagements.
- Measure the impact of your efforts to see what’s “moving the needle.” Click here to learn how.
- Keep up the hard work. Continue to nurture and build your fan base—it will pay off when promoting your next audiobook!
So, there you have it! Between these two posts and the links to the ACX “Promote Yourself” section within, you should be off to a solid start. Of course, there are many great ways to promote, and the internet and social media are constantly presenting new opportunities. We recommend you frequently review your promotional plans and look for ways to branch out to new fans. And of course, if you hit on something good, be sure to share it with your fellow ACXers here at the blog, and on our Twitter and Facebook too!
Jessica has been in the audiobook business for nearly seven years, with a focus on digital and social media marketing. Some of the authors she’s worked with include Sandra Brown, Cassandra Clare, Vince Flynn, Stephen King and Jennifer Weiner. She is a new-ish resident of Jersey City, NJ.
This post has been updated since publication.