Earlier this week we talked about how publicity in the publishing world has changed (and continues) to change. Many self-publishers become their own publicists, putting in the time and energy necessary to gain followers and friends across social networks and building the relationships that will, hopefully, sell books.
Your fans and friends have been there through the writing, editing, and design processes. They’ve seen the work you’ve put in and, like any major accomplishment; they want to celebrate when the project finally comes to a close! So, why not throw a party?
But, the difference here is that this party is going to be all online. A virtual book launch celebration!
So, how exactly does one go about throwing an all online shindig? These tips should get you started!
Have a plan:
You need to time to prepare. This sort of endeavor isn’t something you can whip up overnight. It’s something that takes time. Author Cherie Colyer notes that she’s planned her parties two months in advance.
Start by sketching out what you want the party to entail. Giveaways? A live reading? A Q&A? From there, reach out to your network and see who can lend a hand by spreading the word. Also consider connecting with other bloggers to celebrate the release of the book!
Send out invitations:
This may not be a party at your house, but it’s still important to let people know it’s happening. Don’t overrun your social networks with reminders, but make sure you’re spreading the word early on. Invite you friends, family, and fans using your blog, Facebook fan page, or G+ profile. Take advantage of RSPV features to communicate with all of your potential attendees, letting them know what to expect!
Line up some party games and favors:
Consider some “big” prizes to be given away during the actual party. They don’t have to be high dollar, either. An original, marked-up copy of the first chapter of the book would be an inexpensive, creative way to reward your fans for their participation!What can you do to promote your party and your book that gets your readers involved and offers them a chance to win a copy of the book? Consider Twitter trivia contests, asking readers questions about your book’s setting or characters. Create a collaborative Pinterest board to collect pins related to the book’s theme. Have fun getting to know your prospective readers as they have fun participating in your contests!
Also: Don’t be afraid to ask other authors and friends to chip in a copy of their book. Self-publishers are all in this together, afterall.
Google Hangouts are your friend:
When G+ launched, it included the ability to video chat with multiple people. It’s called a “Hangout” and, with the on air feature, it’s the perfect tool for a self-publishing author to do live readings or Q&As with readers.
Take the time to get to know the process, though. It can be tricky and you don’t want to lose viewers due to technical difficulties.
Self-publishers: Have you considered throwing a virtual book launch party? How would you go about planning it?