Earlier I discussed building your platform, that platform includes the development of your marketing plan. If you do not have a marketing plan yet, google how to develop one then sit down and write or outline yours out. Your marketing plan will not be perfect or complete in the beginning. Actually, I do not think that it will be complete even ten years down the road! However, starting one can help you in the long-term when you are deciding what works for you and your products, and think of what you will learn during the process.
I posted a while back about building one’s platform and listed my current platforms. This is the type of information, I include in my marketing plan along with projected cost and time/duration.
WHAT I AM DOING TO BUILD THAT PLATFORM
I am marketing my books on different social media platforms (Facebook, Twitter, etc.)
Created a website (what I am using now)
Going to events (books, festivals, fashion shows, flea markets)
Handing out flyers, business cards everywhere I go (always keep something with your information on you)
I talk about my books and book club to everyone (I don’t force people to listen, I only discuss my work with interested parties)
Southside Book and Writers Club ~ I am always looking for new members for the book club) this is another chance to market and promote yourself, A great way for all involved actually, but only if you have proactive members willing to work together! Hosting and doing events, is another chance to market and promote. As a book club, we support not only ourselves but also every book we read and its author.
Below is a marketing table I started over a year ago. As you can see from the bulleted list above, I am using my table (below). In my tentative marketing plan, I am trying to go into more detail about each marketing avenue, samples of emails or letters that I use for marketing, and I keep records/templates of promotional flyers, etc. Again I keep records of the cost of each, the cost of duration, and/or if it helped my product.
Do it Yourself Marketing and Promotional Ideas for Products
1. Text Contacts
Text your contacts once or twice a month/no spam/ask them to share your text and links with others…
You can use Ads on Facebook to advertise your products…
Join groups and share your product or links
Post a link on your own FB page and share it with the public
c. Friends Timelines
Ask your friends to share your product, link on their page…
3. Email Contacts
Treat emails the same way as text(no spam) just ask everyone to share your information with their network and send those updates occasionally. No spam…
4. Word of Mouth
Talk to everyone you meet/doing this will surprise you…
This is an excellent way to network/build a budget first/choose events that will work for you and your schedule.
a. Book Fairs
Straightforward/sell your books or products/network, gather business cards
Ask the host or hostess can you set up a display of your product/they can only answer one of two ways: yes or no/have a sign that says the books are a straight dollar amount/ have a jar, this works on trust!! Example 20bks@$8=the amount that should be in the jar when the parties over…now, if you get tipsy and forget, that’s on YOU!
Family, friends, and class/take 20 to 30 books/Network the event/ask them to share your book with others…
6. Personal Website
Develop a site that is pleasant, attractive, and engaging. No Spam, send a blog post twice a month/share some juicy tidbits…no spam…No one wants to visit a monotone site, believe me, those are out there…make it fun, be you…
I know this was a little long; however, I wanted you to have a clearer understanding of the importance of your marketing plan. How having one affects your product, and how not planning a marketing strategy can destroy your wallet. Also be patient when you first start out, do not compare what you are doing to someone else. Everyone works different, and at different levels or stages, everyone's outcome will be different as well.
As always; if you find this information helpful, please share…share