This morning I met a friend for coffee and we talked about, what else, books. We also talked about promoting said books and creating a buzz, something I’ve posted about in the past. Today I’m focusing on readers, not writers. Yes, most writers are also readers.
I firmly believe word-of-mouth is the best advertising. Think about it. How many times have you read a book or watched a television show because a relative or your best friend, or maybe a neighbor, said it was the best thing they’ve read or watched since sliced bread? They’re enthusiastic and want to share their excitement with you.
Let’s say you read a book recently that you truly enjoyed. Did you tell anyone about it? Here’s something I read, but at the moment I can’t remember where. Think about how many people you know. We’ll use the number fifty for today. What the heck? Let’s make that a hundred people between work, family, friends and acquaintances. You’ve read a book that was both entertaining and memorable. Now imagine you tell every one of those hundred people about the book. They read the book and enjoyed it as much as you did, and they tell every one of the hundred people they know about the book. That hundred reads the book and ends up telling all of their connections, and on and on and on. The word spreads like wildfire.
By the end of the week (or month or two) the author’s name could become a household word. I’ve read some really good books because of word-of-mouth. Honestly? I’d never heard of Janet Evanovich until a friend told me about her books and that they made her laugh. I think she had three of the Stephanie Plumb books out at the time and I’ve been hooked ever since. Rhys Bowen? Can’t get enough of her books, and I heard about her through word-of-mouth.
Authors can be a Big Mouth about their own books, but unfortunately sometimes that makes people crazy because we go on too much (at least in my case). We do what we can to get the word out, from personal appearances to book signings to any event we can attend. We post on the Internet in as many places as possible. We talk to total strangers and find out we may have something on common with them. We make new friends along the way.
A lot of the personal connections happen at conferences. Many attendees go home and tell their relatives, neighbors and friends about what fun it was to meet a real live author. There are a few people I’ve stayed in touch with, and I’ve enjoyed the interaction.
I’m no different than anyone else. When I go to writers events I come home and talk about the people I’ve met and things I saw and heard. Sometimes I see my husband’s eyes glaze over, so I turn to my friends and repeat the stories. I’m excited, and without meaning to, I’m creating a buzz.
I’ve met some famous authors, which is exciting, and I’ve also met some relatively unknown authors whom I liked, and soon found myself trying one of their books. They were enthusiastic and friendly, and that’s what generally makes me take a look at their books. (Don’t forget, readers. That there are conferences who welcome readers as well as authors.)
Let’s not forget reviews. If you really enjoy a book, write a review. It’s just another form of word-of-mouth. In the case of a review, you’re blabbing to strangers. It still creates a buzz, although I’ve heard that some people won’t even bother with reviews. Personally, I tend to check them out. I’ve even read a few books that got bad reviews. The storyline sounded good, even if the review didn’t. I wasn’t disappointed.
As a reader, what do you think about creating a buzz? Do you have a big mouth? Can you recommend a good book? I love it when I set a book aside and sigh, thinking how much I enjoyed it and what a satisfying ending the author gave to the story.
Until next week, if you’ve read a good book, start buzzing about it. Tell a friend, and have fun connecting with other readers.
CLICK HERE to visit Marja McGraw’s website
CLICK HERE for a quick trip to Amazon.com
JUST RELEASED: How Now Purple Cow – A Bogey Man Mystery
What do purple cows and elderly spies have to do with each other? Lots. Please check it out.