Monday, March 18, 2019

Marketing Strategy for Authors: Meme as You Write

by Karen Whiting @KarenHWhiting

The best time to create marketing tools for a book is while you write or edit your words. That’s when the ideas are fresh in your mind. As a bonus, you’ll create materials ready to post when the book releases. I tend to do memes as I’m editing each chapter or unit. For writers who just make the deadline, it might work better to create memes after sending the book to the publisher or editor. The lag time before the release is another great time to get creative and focus on marketing.

I’m fairly new to creating memes. My publishers created some for each of my two most recent books. I am creating them for my upcoming release and planning ways to use them in my marketing plans. This September when my 52 Weekly Devotions for Families Who Serve releases I’ve already created 52 memes. That’s one for each week. I started another set of 52 more memes that shares the weekly focus in a different way. I’m putting each meme into a hidden Pinterest board and also keeping them in a file. Once I have the book cover art I’ll add that to many of the memes.

As with any marketing tool, take time to plan for the greatest impact.

Create Your Book Memes
1. Design with consistency in mind
Take time to decide the style you will use. Consider the overall impression you want. Will you use real photos, cartoons, or artistic images? Will you have a specific background color that reflects your brand? Will you use the same font for each meme?  Will they be serious, inspiring, or humorous? What style will best reflect the book’s message? These are important questions to ask before you start creating memes. The answers will be your guide to create effective memes.

2. Add the marketing element
Design a logo or use the book cover to add to the memes as the marketing tool. Some authors simply add their website or book title in small print at the bottom of the meme. For my book, The Gift of Bread, the marketing department at the publishing house created a logo with the title of the book and an image of a stalk of wheat. It’s simple, elegant, and inviting. 

You can create the memes before you have the logo or book cover. Just leave space to add that element when it is ready.

3. Choose how many memes to create
Set a goal of how many to create. You can decide based on content or marketing needs, such as:
  • One for each chapter or unit so a daily devotional might have one for each day or week). 
  • One for each week for the first 3 months after the release (thirteen).
  • A meme for each quote you ant to use from the book
  • Memes that give tips for the readers, related to the book’s topic. So the top ten tips or 21 days of tips, etc.
  • Once you decide how many, write down a theme for each meme. This should reflect the book’s content. It might focus on the plot twists or characters in a fiction book or the main point or quote or each chapter in a nonfiction book.

Plan how to market with the memes
It’s always better to maximize any marketing effort. I like to know I can use the memes in multiple. Each one should be a message that can stand alone for posting on social media., but hopefully as a group they can convey a story or  reflect talking points to make them more versatile. Consider these ideas get more mileage out of the time spent cresting the memes:
  • Use as blog images. For my upcoming release I plan to use each one for a blog post. That works like a prompt on what to write about. I already wrote the opening sentences for each post.
  • Use memes for advertising. Use one or more memes to create a poster for an event or sales table. Memes become instant art for flyers and to send meeting planners to use in marketing upcoming speaking events.
  • Tell a story with your memes. Use a series of memes for a digital photo frame on your sales table or in a power point to scroll on a screen before you start speaking.
  • Your memes could be great images for your book talk. Use them to create the PPT for a talk.
  • Use memes in your newsletter. Post one at the end of the newsletter or use one to launch a chat about your book and a story behind writing the book.
  • Add one in a press release to grab attention.
  • Create ancillary products with memes. Use a series of memes with quotes on them to sell or use the memes to create greeting cards or posters to sell.

You’ll be better prepared to market when the book releases if you have memes ready to go and a strategy ton use them.


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. Great post, Karen! Full of wonderful ideas! Thank you!

    MaryAnn Diorio, PhD, MFA
    Author of Fiction & Non-Fiction
    "Heart-Mending Books for the Young
    and the Young-at-Heart"

  2. I have not made any memes yet. Thank you for the information. :-)

    1. Hope you try it's easy once you've made a few.