If you’ve been following my blog for a while, you most likely know that I post marketing articles on a Monday. And if you don’t, you do now 🙂
One of the reasons I started to write marketing posts was because I saw so many writers who just froze at the very mention of marketing. I get it, marketing is awful. Especially for us creative. But it is necessary.
Marketing shouldn’t be this huge scary task that overshadows everything. It is small steps you can take that build up. Now one way to get over the overwhelm of marketing is through collaboration, which is today’s topic 🙂
What do you mean by collaboration?
Simple, you are not the only writer who needs to plug your work. There are others out there, in the same boat and maybe they hate marketing as much as you do. By teaming up, you can support each other and gain exposure from a wider audience.
If you have connections with other writers who write similar-themed or genre books as you, a collaboration might be something to consider.
How would that work?
Some of the best ways for collaborating is to join up with other authors and run a promotion together. A group of writers have a lot more reach as well as being able to combine any finances and great bigger offers.
If you are writing a YA fantasy novel that including magical elements and several other writers you know are doing the same, this would make a great collaboration.
Collaborations work best when there is a connecting theme. Whether it’s sci-fi, urban fantasy, mystery etc. There would need to be something that connections each of your works together.
How to start one
Firstly, you need to have an idea of how many authors you want in the collaboration. Secondly, you would need to reach out to other authors you feel would work well in the collaboration.
Things to think about:
- Authors would need to have the same genre/theme so there’s a connection
- Be around the similar stage as you (you don’t want to have to delay your launch for a long time because the other writers are nowhere near finished)
- Be a good fit, it’s not just the books that have to connect, you need people who you feel you can work with
You can reach out directly to authors if you know of any. Be polite, friendly and explain the basic idea behind the collaboration. If they are interested, then you can go into more depth. They may even know some author’s themselves.
Send out a message on social media asking for writers who fit the criteria and if they would be interested in collaborating.
Have somewhere you can all come together to discuss such as Skype convo. It is definitely better if you can do a lot of the conversing in real time rather than piecemeal over email. Though do send emails with an overview of all points discussed.
Everyone needs to be on the same page and be happy with what is being done. They must all feel happy to speak up if something is not to their liking.
Ideas on collaborations
There are a number of things you can do as a collaboration to promote your work and those of the other team members.
Themed blog posts
This is where you each write a blog post on a specific theme, usually tied to the genre of your novels. Links are included on each post to feature the other collaborators’ posts so that traffic is driven between each of you.
Bloggers would then encourage their readers to visit the other members of the collaboration.
You could even create a mini-story stretched over however many collaborators they are. Readers would need to jump between the blogs to read the whole story, as each blogger just has a portion on their blog.
Social media Launch party
You could arrange to launch your books all on the same day and then have a joint Launch Party across all your social media.
This can include live videos, pre-recorded videos, special giveaways, raffles etc that can be coordinated over each person’s social media, again, with each collaborator drawing attention to the group.
You could include live interviews, podcasts, quizzes and break it up throughout the day over the different collaborators’ sites. This will allow you to catch people from different time zones.
Create giveaways where a collection of the books (each collaborator’s book) is part of the prize. This could include hardback copies, paperback copies and/or ebooks.
Using your combined reader-reach, you can get more people to join the giveaway and create bigger prizes.
Some things to consider
Collaboration takes a lot of work. Here are some things you might want to address before jumping in.
As mentioned above, you definitely need something that connects each of your novels. The whole point of collaboration is working together to reach a wider audience and offer more to the reader.
However, you need to make sure you are all aiming for the same target audience. If you write sci-fi and jump into a collab with a group of romance writers, you aren’t going to be aiming at the same readership.
So definite your target audience and make sure all those involved have the same one.
Remember this is a business arrangement so you need to have regular meetings with the collaborations to create and agree on clear guidelines.
These would need to include details of what the promotions are, dates and times (remember to consider timezones) when things go live, what each author needs to do etc.
Don’t assume everyone is on the same page. Make it clear, put it in writing and forward to the group… who then need to confirm in writing they agree to the guidelines.
Have these set up ready before you are close to any promotions or uploads.
Create a schedule
Develop a schedule on what is happening when and make sure each collaborator knows when they are to upload / tweet / vlog about their part. Again, be clear on dates and times, and if you’re in different ones, be aware of time zones.
It is recommended that each promo blog, facebook post, video etc be created well in advance and then everyone can just schedule them to go live at the correct time/date.
This reduces the likelihood of error, or someone forgetting. Each author must be equally supporting their collaborators to get the best results.
Double check those links
Each blog post in the chain should include links to the others. This is again why having them written early is imperative as then you can already have the links ready in the article.
Make sure they are correct, working and easy to see.
Get some graphics
Visuals are a must. Create a number of different graphics featuring the collected works. Include text on the graphic to make it clear what it’s all about.
Create a separate graphic for different aspects – are you hosting a live video? Make a graphic about it. Is there a blog-post chain? Make a graphic about it.
You can make individual graphics for each book. Featuring the book cover, author’s name and then a quote from the book. Then each one could be shared on social media by each collaborator.
Use these visuals to capture attention and garner interest.
Remember a collaboration is just that, it’s about all of the team working together to help each other. It should be done professionally, but that doesn’t mean it shouldn’t be fun.
What are your thoughts on Marketing Collaborations?
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Thanks for visiting my blog and I hope you enjoyed this Monday Marketing post. If so, share it around! 🙂
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Pop back on Wednesday when I’ll have a new guest poster on the blog and then Thursday will be my final Blogger Series post.