Your hard work of writing your manuscript and self-publishing has all led to this moment. We’ve compiled a list of tips to help you make the most out of it.
Book Marketing Tips - Book Signings and Events

Tips for Your First Book Signing Event

Your hard work of writing your manuscript and self-publishing has all led to this moment. We’ve compiled a list of tips to help you make the most out of it.

Your hard work of writing your manuscript and self-publishing has all led to this moment: releasing your book. Now, it’s time to plan a book signing event. It takes a lot of thought and effort to make a book signing event a success. To lighten the load, we’ve compiled a list of tips to help you make the most out of it.

1. Research a venue.

Look for a practical location for the number of guests you expect will attend as well as for the atmosphere you wish to create. Some authors like the intimacy that local coffee shops can provide. Others prefer more spacious options like bookstores or rented spaces. If you’re worried about the health concerns of hosting a gathering consider doing a virtual book launch. In this case, your venue research could involve choosing which social media platforms to stream on (Facebook Live, Instagram Live, Youtube Live, etc.).

2. Everyone gets an invite.

Remember this is a special opportunity to introduce and sell your new book. So invite anyone and everyone you know. Sometimes it’s the last people you’d expect that show up to support and buy a book.

3. Optimize the power of social media.

Make a Facebook event for your book launch and send an invite to everyone on your friend’s list. Tweet and tag the location of your launch signing. Instagram a picture of the venue and your book. Make a quick video promoting your book signing and post it on YouTube. You should aim to post every day for at least two weeks prior to the event to remind your followers and build hype. These are just a few examples of how you can be engaging on social media to promote your book launch event.

4. Promote your book at the venue.

Have posters of your book along with images of you to display at the venue.

5. Bring enough books.

It’s better to overestimate the expected guest list and have books left over than the other way around. One of the biggest mistakes a new author could make is to not bring enough books to a launch event.

6. Provide refreshments.

If your venue doesn’t provide food or drinks, provide your own. Refreshments help keep the audience around longer, which can result in them buying more books.

7. Keep people engaged at the event.

Try to include short readings, music, and visuals for entertainment. A book trailer playing on a TV or a running slideshow with images and fun facts can serve to capture the attention of passersby who may want to know more about your book.

8. Gifts and giveaways.

Who doesn’t love them? Having raffles going throughout the event for a free book is a great way to continuously create excitement during an event. You can also gift things like bookmarks and posters with book purchases.

9. Practice your book signing.

You should come to your book launch prepared with signature note ideas in mind for the books you will sign. Remember to always ask for the spelling of a name before you sign the book for someone. 

10. Practice your speech.

You don’t need to give a long speech, but your guests will be expecting to hear from you during the event. Give a shoutout to those who supported your book journey and also thank everyone for coming to support you that day. This is the perfect opportunity to share what this book means to you. Keep it light but make it memorable.

11. Mingle

You may not have enough time to speak to everyone that attends your launch, but you should definitely attempt to get everyone. Thank your guests for coming and ask them what they think of the book. This can be a great way to share a connection with your audience and make them feel valued.

12. Document everything.

If hiring a photographer isn’t an option you can ask a friend or family member to take pictures during the event. Make sure to get pictures of you signing books, talking to readers, giving your speech, and of attendees mingling. Also take a picture with anyone who contributed to the journey of your book launch. You can use these images to keep the excitement going online after the event ends.

13. Networking.

Make sure you gather a list of emails from the event attendees. After your launch event, send thank you emails and messages to everyone that contributed to your book launch event success. Building these good relationships with your networks now will make future marketing ventures smoother.

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