Friday, May 22, 2020

15 Tips for Hosting a Successful Facebook Live Book Launch Party

by Lori Hatcher @LoriHatcher2


Last month, in 5 Reasons You Should Host a Facebook Live Book Launch Party, I shared how, because of the pandemic, I had to postpone my in-person book launch party and instead launch Refresh Your Faith, Uncommon Devotions from Every Book of the Bible with a Facebook Live event. In addition to being fun, a Facebook Live event was easy for people to attend, relatively inexpensive, required no special equipment, and reached people who wouldn’t or couldn’t come to an in-person event. Like any other promotional event, a little planning goes a long way. 

15 Tips for Hosting a Successful Facebook Live Book Launch Party
  1. Create a Facebook Live event graphic to use while sharing and inviting. I used Picmonkey to create a collage that included the details of the event and a picture of myself holding my book.
  2. Begin announcing the event at least two weeks in advance on social media and on your blog. Encourage your friends to share the invite.
  3. Set up a Facebook Live event on your Facebook page. This will allow you to invite all your Facebook friends and send reminders as the day draws closer. Note: Facebook only allows you to schedule a FB Live event one week in advance, but don’t wait until a week before to begin publicizing it.
  4. Ask your launch team to share the event and talk it up.
  5. Create an agenda and a script. (Next month I’ll share a sample agenda.)
  6. Buy or solicit donations of door prizes and giveaways that can be easily mailed. I gave away signed copies of my book and gift cards.
  7. Set up a Paypal.me account or other way to take payments for those who want to order books during the party. 
  8. Ask your publicist to offer a special Launch Day or Launch Week price for your book. My publisher, Our Daily Bread, reduced the price by 40 percent for five days following the party.
  9. Recruit helpers. Because I launched in the middle of the shelter-at-home order, I drafted my husband, David, as co-host and my friend Jean, to keep track of prize entries remotely. It helps to have someone who can field text messages, answer comments, and troubleshoot while you’re talking. David led the How Well Do You Know the Author game to give me a chance to rest and take a drink of water.
  10. Decorate the space behind you to make it festive. I chose a color that complimented my book cover and hung balloons, displayed several copies of my book, and placed a vase of colorful flowers on the table behind me. Check the lighting (use the camera on your cell phone) to be sure it’s bright enough with no shadows on your face.
  11. Arrange everything you need within arm’s reach to avoid having to jump up and down—a copy of your book, your script, a glass of water, and any prizes you want to show.
  12. Choose clothes and make up carefully. Wear solid colors. Apply your makeup slightly heavier to avoid looking washed out and use powder to minimize shine. Be sure your clothing colors compliment the d├ęcor to create a scene that looks professional and coordinated.
  13. Choose an excerpt from your book to read during the event to whet your readers’ appetite. Book mark it and be ready to share why it’s significant. Select a portion that has a current events connection if possible.
  14. Announce prize winners throughout the party, but save the Grand Prize for the end.
  15. End on time. I advertised the party from 8 – 9 pm, but my audience was still engaged and the comments were flying at 9. I officially ended the party by announcing the Grand Prize winner, thanked everyone for coming, and asked my husband to close in prayer. Then I invited folks to stick around for an informal Q & A. My husband was thrilled when someone even asked him a question J.
These 15 tips aren’t all-inclusive, but hopefully they’ll get you thinking. Although I didn’t plan to launch my book in the middle of a pandemic with a Facebook Live event, God controls all things. Since His ways are always best, I moved forward in faith and adapted my plans. The result was a party that gathered 70 friends in real time, reached almost 4,000 people, prompted 700 comments, and (to date) has 2.1K views. If you’d like to take a peek, CLICK HERE.

If you’re planning a book launch in the near future or simply gathering information, I hope you’ll consider adding a Facebook Live launch party to your list of promotional ideas. If you’ve done a FB Live launch, please share your best tips in the comments below.

Next month I’ll share 10 components of a successful Facebook Live launch party that you can adapt for your event. Stay tuned!

TWEETABLE
15 Tips for Hosting a Successful Facebook Live Book Launch Party - @LoriHatcher2 on @EdieMelson (Click to Tweet)

Lori Hatcher loves to teach, train, and encourage writers by sharing what others have generously shared with her. She’s the author of several devotional books including  Refresh Your Faith – Uncommon Devotions from Every Book of the Bible and Hungry for God … Starving for Time, Five-Minute Devotions for Busy Women , the 2016 Christian Small Publisher Book of the Year. The editor of Reach Out, Columbia magazine, she’s also a blogger, writing instructor, and inspirational speaker. You’ll find her pondering the marvelous and the mundane on her blog, Hungry for God. . . Starving for Time . Connect with her on FacebookTwitter (@LoriHatcher2), or Pinterest (Hungry for God).

2 comments:

  1. Great tips Ms. Lori. Thank you! While I can't see any quantitative data to tell me the success of your RYF book launch, based on the over 50 reviews you've gotten on Amazon.com (unheard of I think), I'd say your launch and your book were both a big hit! Well done ma'am.

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  2. We had a lot of fun, J.D., gave away some prizes and (hopefully) made a bunch of people aware of Refresh Your Faith. I pray God uses my efforts to connect people who need encouragement and a fresh love for God's Word with my book. One really fun aspect of my unplanned Facebook Live launch party has been the opportunity to coach a few other writers who are also launching a book during this pandemic. I find it very rewarding to share what I've learned with others so they don't have to work as hard as I did!

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