8 tips on creating an army to market for you..
Let’s face it; if you go at marketing alone, you’ll have a monumental, if not impossible job ahead of you. Even the New York Times bestselling authors need people to help them get the word of their book out. That’s what we are talking about when we say “an army of people to help you market.” How do we find people willing to be our spokespeople and tell the world about us or our project? Below are 8 ways you can start to build your own marketing army…
1. Put out a great piece of work. If you want people excited about sharing your work with the world, then you need to put the work in!!! If you are going to jump in the same arena, treat your book like the professionals would. Rewrite, rework, and revise over and over until you know it’s as professional as you can get it. If you don’t know how to do this, learn. Take a class, read multiple how-to books, seek professional help. This is not the project you want to treat like amateur’s night at the Improv. If you want it to go anywhere, then put in the elbow grease to make it as polished as you can possibly make it.
2. Start from your inner circle. Once you take the plunge and put your work out there for all to see, contact your inner circle of friends, family, co-workers, and other relationships to help you get the word out. Encourage them to send e-mails, blog posts, letters, phone calls, and anything else they can possibly think of to tell others about you. These should be your most ardent supporters, but don’t get discouraged if they all don’t climb on board with you right away. Welcome to human nature. Even our closest relationships have good intentions but are sometimes hard to stir into action. Just keep at them; you will be surprised with what a little patience can accomplish.
3. Expand your inner circle. Don’t be content with your current “inner circle.” Look for ways to add others to it. Find those people whom you connect with, personally or professionally and recruit them to help you pass on your message. I have been blessed by meeting some of the finest marketers through my job. Even if your inner circle only tells a small number of contacts about your book, their cumulative effect can be extraordinary. And never judge a person by the number of contacts they boast. Having a friend with 10 quality contacts who each has 1000 quality contacts is far better than the person with 20,000 non-targeted Twitter followers. Passion for you goes a long way to make up for a seeming lack of contacts.
4. Be willing to be in someone else’s army. Like i say in one of my records, the most selfish thing u can do is serve. Yes, if you want people to help get the word out about you, then you need to be willing to serve in their army to get the word out about their pet project. In fact, be proactive about this. Ask someone what you can do for them. Just as much as you want and need people to spread the news about you, they probably need people to spread the word about something they are doing. If you are truly a giver, and not just an emotional or professional vampire, then you will be surprised at the number of people who will gladly plug for you. And when you commit to help someone in their army, do it right. Put in the time and your best effort. After all, that’s what your are looking for, right?
5. Network offline. Don’t keep your efforts to network solely online. Get out in the community and meet people. Visit local civic clubs, volunteer to speak at your local library, or better yet, volunteer to conduct a free class at your library. Meet the editor of a small community newspaper and volunteer to write an article for them. When holidays come up, find community events and see if any offer door prizes. If so, volunteer your signed product as a prize. All of these ideas put you into contact with influencers who can be powerful allies when it comes to getting the word out about. And many of these people are very well connected.
6. Meet new people online. Yep, gotta do this one. Why? Because online contacts can have your greatest leverage when it comes to telling people about you. Be careful though–not all contacts are created equal. Just like you get junk mail, you can also get junk contacts. What you want to do is cultivate real life contacts. These are people you can interact with online, more than just send e-mails or tweets to. Of course you won’t be able to create a real relationship with 30,000 Twitter followers, but you can make a point to reach out and touch base with a few new ones each week. Real messages, aimed just at them. All of a sudden, you just moved from being a spammer trying to sell your book to a real flesh and blood person. A personal message can make a huge impact and be the difference in someone spreading the news about you or not.
7. Maintain contact with the people you meet. Dove tailing on the last point, it’s not enough to start collecting contacts. You need to maintain communications with them. You can do this through e-mails, newsletters, web site updates, blog posts, letters, post cards, phone calls, etc. Someone is more likely to help a friend than a stranger. With each communication you have with them, the less and less of a stranger you become to them.
8. Ask. Sometimes we forget the most elementary lessons of all. Sometimes all it takes is to simply ask someone to tell their friends and family about you. How may sales have you missed out on already because you did not ask someone to tell people about you? This is a very easy thing to do, but a very hard thing to get done. Make it a point to ask your neighbors, friends, your dry cleaner, your kid’s teachers, anyone and everyone to help you spread the news about you. Even a small percentage of people who comply begins to make a difference when you keep asking more and more people to help you spread the news about you.
So, your challenge today is to ask 10 people to help you spread the word about you and to find 1 person whose army you can join. Good luck. I hope this helps you find more people to help you promote than you “thought” possible.
#shoutout to Tony Eldridge for the assistance…