In other words, marketing managers have the power to give a thumbs up or thumbs down on your project, but editors have no control over marketing strategies. I can’t speak for all houses, but that’s the process I’m used to.
So here’s the deal . . . don’t ask your editor about the marketing plan for your book. We don’t know. By the time marketing strategies are implemented for your potential bestseller, acquisitions editors have moved on to future lists; sometimes we’re working two years ahead. For instance, on October 12, I’ll present the Spring 2013 list to Pub Board.
If editors are fortunate, an author or marketing manager will pass on one of your reviews or tell us about your book launch, but we have no idea what specific ads your book has appeared in or what publicity or media opportunities you might have or how much money is/was spent.
Bottom line? Get to know your marketing manager. Coordinate your efforts at the beginning of your campaign. If you want to send an ARC (advance reader copy) to a particular blog for a review, or contact local media, or even hire a publicist, you don’t want to cover the same territory as your publisher.
But please don’t bug your marketing manager with a daily email or phone call. She can’t do her job if all she does is answer your questions. Make contact when it’s imperative that a copy of your book needs to land in the hands of your reviewer by a certain date. The more important the reviewer, the more time that person needs to read your book and give you a thoughtful review.
It’s important that you find out when the marketing manager needs information from you about your marketing plans. Yes, plan to market your own book as well. The days of long book tours, expensive hotel rooms, and chocolate-dipped strawberries are over, unless you’re a million-dollar author.
Make friends with your marketing manager and supply her with the information she needs on the date she needs it. If you’re responsive and professional, your positive attitude will convince the marketing manager that you’re an author who can handle a radio or TV interview.
Fiction sells by word of mouth. If you’re a new author, prepare yourself now. Learn to speak to groups, even small ones. Set up a website or blog or visit other websites and comment on blogs.
Get to know bookstore owners. Engage in social media. Write blog or magazine articles. Do it now and you’ll be ready to hop on the marketing train when your book is published.
People in publishing will notice your efforts.
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Please let me know how today’s blog has helped you. This becomes a two-way conversation when you post a comment. Often I jump back on the blog during the day and will answer your questions or respond to your comments. I have both published and unpublished authors who read The Roving Editor, and we’d love to hear from you so that we can learn from your experience. Let’s talk!