Monday, October 15, 2018

A Marketing Timeline for Any Author

Edie here. Today I want to introduce you to our newest The Write Conversation columnist, Karen Whiting. Karen is a friend and best-selling author. Beyond that, she's the person I turn to when I need marketing and branding brainstorming. To say I'm excited to have her sharing her wisdom with those of you in this community is a HUGE understatement. Be sure to check out her newest book (at the end of the post) and give her a warm TWC welcome!

A Marketing Timeline for Any Author
By Karen Whiting @KarenHWhiting

Your book will be releasing. Hooray! Yikes! That means marketing! The dreaded word. Approach it with the joy of sharing about your book and a little organization to stay sane. Then it will not be so overwhelming, and you’ll be more confident. Whether you have a book coming yet, or the hope of one, it’s good to prepare. Whether weeks, months, or even years away from release, there are activities to work on during each phase. Create a notebook or folder to keep your information together.
4-6 months (or longer ahead)
Write blog posts, create memes, and create a hidden Pinterest board. Start or add to databases of contacts for media, influencers, street or launch team, book reviewers, meeting planners, and endorsers to build your marketing network. I write blog prompts and create memes while editing. I know what I cut that could be a blog and what I focus on to post about. 

Start a file of post prompts and tweets for social media and future blog posts. As you write or edit the book, take time to pull out thoughts for those posts. Look up photos for memes and create them. Add the memes to a hidden Pinterest board. That gathers the memes in one place to use later for posts, blogs, social media and to put on a published Pinterest board.  

More early promotional activities:
  • Prepare bio
  • Write the book description (this may be in the proposal)
  • Create a book information or sale sheet
  • Write promotional copy for book jacket and catalogue
  • Create radio pitches
  • Create a press kit
  • Create suggested media questions
  • Write press releases
  • Plan your dream release party/events and check on locations
  • Design web pages for the book (these can be hidden)
  • If desired, check out publicists and contract now
  • Create a speaker/expert sheet and send to meeting planners
  • Schedule speaking engagements 
  • Create a contest
  • Create a Top Ten list for book’s topic
  • Write and submit articles on book’s topic
  • Start scheduling a blog tour
The month before the release is a crazy and exciting time. Send out the press releases, contact media, prepare your street team, and do FB live to initiate a buzz. Specifics to check off:
  • Send a release notice to local papers with your contact info and availability for interviews
  • Have publisher send galleys sent to reviewers (larger ones may need this several weeks earlier)
  • Contact major TV and radio stations
  • Send out post cards with book cover to influencer list, friends, stores, and meeting planners
  • Create a You-tube book trailer
  • Open up book’s web pages
  • Send out Top Ten list
  • Schedule some posts
  • Send publisher list of media and reviewers who want review copies
  • Finalize release party 
  • Prepare release newsletter with freebies to get subscribers.
Once receive copies arrive make a FB live video of opening the book and showing it to your followers. Call family and friends, and start promoting. Send follow up emails to media to schedule interviews. Send copies to your street team with any thank you gifts, and give them a list of tasks. Start staging your release event. Keep the momentum going with the following:
  • Start the blog
  • Upload the book trailer to YouTube and your web site
  • Upload free pdfs to be downloaded
On the actual release date, take a deep breath, look your best, and show up!
  • Unveil a Pinterest board
  • Do a FB live with friends, at release party, of launch team members (this can be online)
  • Upload free pdf files to be downloaded and FB live about them
  • Release your newsletter
After the book release
Promotion continues as long as the book is in print, so persist.
  • Send out press release/photos of release event and  any other news as you promote the book
  • Keep scheduling interviews and sending out more review copies
  • Schedule teleseminars
  • Keep posting blog entries, newsletters
  • Compile promo sheet of interview quotes and post on your web site/blog
  • Visit other blogs on topic and post comments with a link to your site
  • Consider new activities, such as a FB group for a Bible study or discussion
Choose which of the above activities you want to do, add others not listed, and start building for your release. It’s your timeline, so what activities will you do next? 

A #marketing timeline for any author from @KarenHWhiting on @EdieMelson (Click to Tweet)

Gift of Bread: Recipes for the Heart and Table
by Karen Whiting

A feast for the senses that combines inviting recipes, thoughtful reflections, encouragement, and instruction for how to live fully on God's provision.
Thirty-one chapters, each featuring detailed and easy-to-follow recipes for breads of every kind, celebrate the many ways we come together around the table. Whether you are a baker who enjoys thoughtful, inspirational writing or a reader who loves a good cookbook, you will find heartfelt stories and inspirations throughout this book. Expert tips, how-tos, and pointers will turn even a novice into a successful baker, and the writing will encourage readers to reach out and share their bounty with others, while thanking God for their daily bread.

Karen Whiting ( is an international speaker, former television host of Puppets on Parade, certified writing and marketing coach, and award-winning author of twenty-five books for women, children, and families. Her newest book, The Gift of Bread: Recipes for the Heart and the Table reflects her passion for bread and growing up helping at her grandparent’s restaurant. 

She has a heart to grow tomorrow’s wholesome families today. She has written more than seven hundred articles for more than sixty publications and loves to let creativity splash over the pages of what she writes. She writes for Leading Hearts, The Kid’s Ark, and BCM International. Connect with Karen on Twitter @KarenHWhiting Pinterest KarenWhiting FB KarenHWhiting


  1. Congrats on your new book and welcome to The Write Conversation Ms. Karen. Prayers for much success and God's blessings. Great marketing tips ma'am.

  2. I love your tip to save what you need to cut during editing for later blog posts, Karen. I hate needing to cut interesting ideas almost as much as I hate having to come up with blog posts from scratch. This helps with both of those issues.

    I look forward to reading more of your insights here.

    1. I am glad it helps you. I have always found it useful and nothing is wasted this way.

    2. I missed this comment. Sorry and thanks for the welcome!