Review of Organising a book launch

What on earth is an on line book launch:

This is what I wrote last Thursday, a day before my on line book launch:

“I’ve wracked my brains as to what to do for a launch day for my new novel. I’ve read posts of advice until I’m on overload.

What other folks say:

Some folks swear by quizzes, giveaways and rafflecopters. One day I will maybe get around to find out what rafflecopters are and how they work but, you see, I’m a bit long in the tooth for all of these new ideas.

A Steep Learning Curve to get ready:

You need photos for on line promotions but often you have  a PDF instead:

  • I think I’ve grasped such things as how to change a PDF into a JPEG and visa versa (There’s PDF2JPEG which is great. They even plant trees. Are they virtual ones? I dare not ask.)

You need to be able to convert manuscripts from word to various ebook versions:

  • Calibre is a library I wonder how I lived without all those years. You can download it for free and you seem to be able to convert anything to anything. (WORD to e pub or to Mobi, even PDF back to WORD)

You need links to your books:

  • Recently I’ve been introduced to Universal Links ~ great things which magically give you a link to any amazon page in the world. Mind boggling really! (I was pointed to Booklinker by a helpful author) They even update themselves if Amazon changes anything.

You need reviews:

  • Then there are ARC’s ~ now, I knew these were preview books, but thought they were for those huge publishing companies to send out to hundreds of readers ~ plop, they land on the door mat in time to give those hundreds of book reviews as soon as the book is launched. Isn’t that right? When I was asked for one, an ARC that is, I googled it and found a site called Booksprout. Where do they get these names from? Well, lo and behold I can put my book on the site for a few days pre publication for a few readers to download for free and give an honest but free review. So I did! I have not had a look to see what has happened as yet but I’ll let you know. No time…

You need an elevator pitch:

  • A very new expression for me stopped me in my tracks. I was asked for ‘An Elevator Pitch’ Do you remember the episode in Only Fools and Horses when Del and Rodney were caught in the lift? That’s what popped into my mind. Here’s what good old Google says: ‘An elevator pitch is a brief, persuasive speech that you use to spark interest in what your organization does. You can also use them to create interest in a project, idea, or product – or in yourself. A good elevator pitch should last no longer than a short elevator ride of 20 to 30 seconds, hence the name.’ …so now you know too. Now I’ve written one I’ll pop it on Facebook and Twitter occasionally.

You need publicity:

It’s OK to publicize yourself but to find others to help you is even better.

  • I have several bloggers I know on line and follow so initially I contacted them
  • There are lots of options on FIVERR for publicity on Facebook and Twitter
  • I was recommended and she has done a tremendous amount of work to orgnise a blog tour for me in April.

This is a lot of fun but it requires a great deal of time though, answering questions for interviews, writing guest posts including ‘five things you don’t know about me’ and extracting bits of my new book. It’s good to have all of the above to hand before you are asked for them.

Prepare a newsletter:

There’s many articles on line about the need for having an email list. I suggest googling it. For newsletters I use Mailchimp. It has a fairly easy interface to use. Getting a list of subscribers is another matter, but there’s lots of advice on line too.

A Giveaway Story maybe:

I’ve used Smashwords to launch a free short story to offer to new subscribers. We’ll see how it goes.

What did I do on the day?

This was my plan. I kept it manageable and fairly low key because I felt it important to be on Twitter and Facebook in real time to respond to folks who kindly made comments or RT (retweeted.)

  • I’ll be on line on Twitter and Facebook between 7.30am and 8.30 am to announce the day! (as long as my alarm goes off) I’ll attempt to use my first ever GIF or maybe two. I’ll let you look that up. Emoticons are old hat now apparently!
  • I’ll send an announcement to my subscribers to my newsletter on Mailchimp
  • I’ll be back on line for various frivolities between 12 and 1pm GMT when I’ll have a little quiz for a signed paperback and an ebook too (on Twitter and Facebook)
  • At 3 pm I’ll explain how folks can download my free story (if they sign up for my newsletter that is!)
  • At 4 pm I’ll be having tea and cake to celebrate with hubby (I’ll post a photo of it and you can post one back. That would be great. You could join me in a virtual tea party!)
  • At 6pm I’ll be in The Crown in Kinghorn celebrating with the usual Friday crowd of friends!

How did it go?

Firstly, it was manageable and I had a wonderful response on Twitter and a gentle number of comments and likes on Facebook. I enjoyed the day and felt positive at the end, even though it is six years since the launch of my last novel. MURDER, Now and Then

I’m not sure if all of my posts got through to people on Fcebook. I’m not sure how it works now but maybe I should have scheduled an event like I did six years ago.

I felt quite a buzz nevertheless, especially on Twitter.

What do you think?

Have you other ideas to share?


MISSING Past and Present was launched on Friday 28th february on line.

My second ‘Mystery Inspired by History’

Available on Amazon

It can be ordered from bookshops in the UK from the end of March 2020


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Filed under Author Diana Jackson, Book reviews, Events, Marketing your novel, MISSING Past and Present, Mystery inspired by history series

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