The following are tips for agents and authors that fall within their control:I’ve said it before but I’ll say it again. Be a professional and positive player in the process. I’ve seen editors publicists/publishers do a lot more for a book because they just plain like an author/agent.
Be aware of the market around you. Two heads are better than one so if you see something being done that seems to be working, share it with the editor. I do this all the time and am pleasantly surprised to find that one publisher doesn’t know something another publisher is doing that’s working. Same goes for those savvy authors out there who may be following other careers.
Be a squeaky wheel. Don’t send emails just for the sake of sending but if you have news, share it! Brag about that review in the Times, or that blog interview you wrote or that awesome blurb you secured. Agents want to know and will happily pass it along to your editor who will in turn pass it along to the rest of their team.
If you are so lucky as to get one of those big fat advances, put some extra money aside. A publisher will tell you at the time of the offer that they are going to do this that and the other, but that’s before the book goes out into the world, where sales forces and buyers are reading the book. Things might not be as positive down the road and much of the marketing money will depend on the print run and general enthusiasm in house. So, if you can put something aside, do.
Do book clubs! Writers, agents and publishers are in the business because we love books. We love to write them or have no choice but to write them and we love to read them dare I say, our favorite way to spend our evenings is with a good book and a good glass of wine. And at the end of the day, when someone tells me that I just have to read this book, that’s a better way to get me to buy it than some NY Times ad, which I will never see as I read online these days anyway.
Connect. I for one am on social media so I was thrilled to hear one publisher recently say that they cared less about the number of Twitter followers an author had and more about the actual emails that an author had access to. It’s as if we’ve done a 180 with social media, and perhaps because we are all overwhelmed by the many ways to “connect” the best way is when you get a personal email from an author you admire, telling you that his or her next book is about to go on sale.
Read more at Writer Unboxed » Marketing Tips for Agents and Authors.