Book Launch 101: Why Aspiring Authors Should Serve on Launch Teams

If you engage with other writers on social media, you’ll soon have the opportunity to serve on a Book Launch Team. Some writers turn down these opportunities unaware of how useful they are to aspiring authors.

What is a Book Launch Team?

A Book Launch Team is a team of influencers who help promote the book, primarily through social media and websites that sell books directly to readers. Launch team members read the book prior to its release and post reviews, photos quotes and impressions on social media and online booksellers.

How does it Work?

Usually the author or a Launch Team Coordinator will recruit potential team members via social media or email, using the author’s email list. For some launches, there is an application process and only those with relevant and significant platforms are included on the team.

Information is emailed to team members at regular interval–often daily. Communication escalates during the peak promotional period of the launch. The author will usually create a private Launch Team Page on Facebook for easy interaction with the team. This also provides a great forum for team members to network with other influencers.

The author or coordinator will post frequently to the page, guiding team members through the promotion process. Each launch team is unique, but most include the following: Chapter by Chapter interaction about the book, questions, suggested promotional activities such as:

  • Tweet a quote from each chapter.
  • Talk about your impressions of the book on Facebook.
  • Post the cover on all social media outlets.
  • Review the book on Amazon.com, BarnesandNoble.com, ChristianBooks.com, GoodReads.com.
  • Blog about the book and/or interview the author on your personal website.
  • Share the book with your book club/Bible study or other small group (where appropriate.)

Why should you serve on other authors’ book launch teams?

1. The Golden Rule: Do unto others as you’d have them do unto you. You’ll need help launching your book, so hey, it stands to reason other authors need help with theirs. Keep in mind that helping others doesn’t obligate them to help with your launch. I serve on launches because I believe in a project and the author. Period. No strings. Go and do likewise! It’ll come back to you when it’s your turn.

2. It helps get books into the hands of readers! Ministry can’t happen until a reader receives the written words. You are part of the author’s ministry team when you help launch a book.

3. You’ll gain a better understanding of the author/reader relationship. Watch how the author engages with her tribe. How frequently does she engage them? What does she give away? What does she not give away? How does her tribe receive her? What steps is she taking to grow her contact list?

4. You’ll grow! Every time I participate in a book launch, I grow. On Michael Hyatt’s Platform Launch Team, I gained skills for building my personal platform. On Kathi Lipp’s Clutter-Free team, I spent 21 days de-cluttering my home! On Michele Cushatt’s Undone team, I’m learning to accept the life I have, even when it doesn’t turn out how I expected. As part of Joanne Kraft’s The Mean Moms Guide to Raising Great Kids  team, I’m becoming a better mom and being encouraged by the moms with similar struggles. All while learning how to launch my own books! I love it!

5. You’ll network with other team members, some of whom may become friends or may be interested in helping you with your future launch.

6. You’ll experience the abundant joy that comes with helping others.

7. When you serve on launch teams and you’ll be much better prepared to launch your own book. You’ll have the opportunity to interact with the author and the launch coordinator. They’ll be available to answer questions, make suggestions and guide you through your part of the launch process. This is invaluable! You’ll see what they do and can ask why (if it’s not obvious.) You’ll get to see the results of the team’s efforts. The launch coordinator will usually share Amazon stats for the project, so you’ll see what works for a particular project. Then you can adjust what you learn to fit your own book when you’re ready to launch.

Watch for my next post on Writing Great Book Reviews, a crucial skill for anyone serving on book launch teams.

 

How to Take Your Writing to the Next Level This Weekend

 

Are you an aspiring writer dreaming about putting your ideas on paper? Are you afraid to commit to calling yourself a writer? Are you a published writer in a slump? Are you a writer looking for a great place to learn more, build your network, and fellowship with like-minded creative folks?

If you answered yes to any of the above questions, the West Coast Christian Writers conference is the event that can help you take your writing to the next level.

Quality teaching and encouragement from fellow Christian writers in a welcoming atmosphere create the perfect environment for spiritual and educational growth.

Be inspired to write and connect with readers fearlessly as Kathi Lipp, keynote speaker and author of 10 books, shares her experience from the trenches.

The WCCW conference offers four tracks to choose from.

Explore the art of creating captivating characters, intriguing settings, and riveting dialogue with award-winning author of 32 novels, Adina Senft.

Learn to “make your writing sizzle” with author Bill Giavannetti, Senior Pastor at Neighborhood Church in Redding with four published books under his belt. He’ll equip nonfiction writers to “touch both the head with truth and the heart with grace.”

Discover creative ways to organize ideas, uncover unique publishing opportunities, and develop effective marketing strategies as Marci Seither unpacks 15 years of knowledge during the “Fast track to Publishing” session.

Navigate through an interactive track designed to help writers and speakers build and maintain a strong platform with greater marketing opportunities with Keri Wyatt Kent, a leader armed with 20 years of freelance writing experience.

Learn “New Ways to Unleash the Gospel” through Ted-Style Talks presented by Brent Dusing, Silicon Valley entrepreneur and founder of Lightside Games.

The WCCW conference also offers free walk-in coaching and critiques, an on-site prayer team, a story contest, a conference bookstore, and opportunities to connect with online writing communities.

We’ll enter God’s presence through the musical anointing of Tapestry, a joy-filled worship band led by Jane Liddle, a worship pastor at Crossroads Church in San Jose, California.

We’ll be inspired throughout this learning adventure by our emcee Christine Ingebretson, Women’s Minister at Freemont Community Church and yearly retreat leader at Mount Hermon.

Why should writers invest in a weekend at the first annual West Coast Christian Writers conference?

These power-packed workshops can open the doors to getting the stories God’s placed on your heart into the hands of readers.

After attending a weekend conference with writing workshops taught by several of the WCCW founders and teaching team, I published my first short story and began learning how to turn my writing dreams into ministry opportunities. I’ve had multiple projects published since then and am currently working on a book proposal for an idea sparked in the halls of my first writers’ conference.

The connections I’ve made have turned into a loving network of writers prayerfully encouraging me when I forget my writing journey, like my spiritual walk, was never meant to be experienced in isolation.

Not a moment, or a penny, will be wasted if you decide to join us on February 20-21 at the West Coast Christian Writers conference in Fremont, California.

Register today at www.westcoastchristianwriters.com for only $149, payable online and at the door this weekend. Come prepared to worship, learn, laugh, fellowship, and take your writing to the next level.

With a heart for loving God, loving people, and nurturing spiritual growth, Xochi (so-she) E. Dixon encourages and equips women to experience the fragrance of God’s presence through prayerful study and application of His Holy Word at www.xedixon.com.

 

 

Creative Marketing Part I: Becoming Known in the World

Platform. Branding. Promotion. It’s about becoming known.

Writers hope our books bring value or at least a joyful respite to our readers. But despite buckets of sweat, gallons of coffee and trash bags of shredded revisions that went into completing our books, writing them remains the easy part of this business.

The hard part of being a writer is getting our books into the hands of readers so they can be helped or brought joy. It’s that platform, branding and promotion thing where Christian writers often stumble.

The key is in the value we bring. If what we have written has the possibility of helping even one person, then we have the responsibility to do what we can to help that one person find our book.

Jesus didn’t sit at home with a few friends and discuss religion. He traveled the cities and countryside, speaking both to the few and to the multitudes. Jesus did the work of promotion, so to speak, in order to spread the Good News. Because people needed to hear it.

Many of us Christians write as a ministry to educate, entertain or inspire others. Part of writing in obedience involves letting people know about what we have written—because people who need our books can’t be helped by them if they don’t know our books exist.

Spending time deciding what you’d like to accomplish this year to become known is the first step. Then make sure to evaluate and reassess your goals quarterly.

Maybe you have no trouble bravely sharing your projects with the world. Or maybe you need a gentle nudge. Or a big shove. Each month this year, we’ll look at ideas for becoming known. Maybe one or all of them will be a fit for you.

We come to the writing business to serve others. Part of serving includes becoming known so we can reach the people who need to be served. In other words, part of a writing involves stepping out into the world. Following the example of Jesus.

Carol Peterson is a Christian woman who can’t stop writing about God, His great big, beautiful world and our place in it. Carol writes for women and children and blogs at: http://carolpetersonauthor.com

She writes to educate, entertain and inspire–children, their teachers and parents, other writers, and readers of all genres.