Ironically, despite working as a marketer, and having an MBA with a marketing focus, and loving my profession, I find the act of marketing my own work... well... icky and uncomfortable. I've learned a lot since I started this blog and started using social media to create some awareness online, and thought I might share some.
Since blogging is the venue most of us use, I thought I might start with some book blogging "dont's." But let's make it easy, let us use a metaphor: You've just published your book. You're very proud. You go to a party, which is an excellent opportunity to meet new people and maybe get a couple of them interested in buying your book.
Don't be the high-pressure Girl Scout cookie Mom. Most Mom's: "Hey, Sue is selling cookies. Let me know if you want some." This Mom "Sally is selling cookies. Here is the order form. I will take a check. Why are you only ordering 5 boxes. Do you hate children?" Most authors "Hey, great blog post, I really like XYZ. Hope you check out my blog" (unsaid: and while there notice I read a book that maybe you will read). High pressure author "Hello. I wrote a book. I am going to ignore everything you spent so much time writing on your blog and simply tell you to go read my book." Guess what usually WON'T happen in this case? Trust me, Thin Mints sell themselves more than your novel does.
Don't be the "Want to See Pictures of my Cat" guy. This sort of goes with the above, but the social media world has many of the same rules as a party. There is a conversational arc. People are talking about stuff. So if you're at a post talking about someone's kids, don't start a comment thread that talks about writing. It's not subtle. "I love kids... they remind me of how, when I am writing... because you know, I am a writer..." Even though you aren't hard selling, this is akin to the guy at a party that can turn every conversation into a diatribe on his cats. No one wants to talk to that guy.
Don't be that woman that wears white to another woman's wedding. If someone has a blog post up annoucning the launch of their new title, acknowledge that they likely spent years of their lives and poured their heart and soul into it. Adding on a shout out to your own work, subtle or no, is like trying to steal thunder. Let people have their thunder.
Any others? I know we're all out here a lot and I am wondering what good, bad, or ugly book marketing tactics we all see...