Please share your thoughts and ideas. I hope to expand and revise this list often.
Special thanks to Erin Dionne for her input.
- Develop a Web site or start a blog to communicate with your audience directly.
- Create a list of contacts with e-mail addresses. This list may include friends, family, former classmates, and booksellers.
- Get involved in social networking: Facebook, Twitter, My Space, Red Room, Good Reads, and RWP, to name a few.
- Create a Facebook "Fan Page" for your book or event. Speak directly to your audience, and let the word spread virally.
- Join a listserv or two.
- Create a video or audio post for your poem for your blog or Web site.
- Organize a Skype poetry reading. *I'm trying this next week. *
- Organize a small group of fellow poets or writers to market work collectively.
- Organize a blog tour.
- Run contests though your blog or Facebook page, and participate in contests that others host. Offer books as prizes.
- Give away signed copies of your title via Goodreads.
- Hang flyers or posters to promote your reading. Make sure the date, time, and location is prominent.
- Contact schools, libraries, and community centers to give talks or lectures.
- Check into besides bookstores, such as bars, restaurants, retirement homes, and hospitals. Underserved groups truly appreciate the outreach.
- If you have friends in other cities, see if you can arrange joint readings, allowing the local poet to draw in the crowd for you.
- Teach a free poetry class at your local library.
- Get involved with your local arts community.
- Post events in the calendar section of local newspaper and on community Web sites.
- Build a list of possible reviewers with local, regional, and national newspapers, radio and TV stations, alumni magazines, and public radio outlets.
- Have postcards made and send them out to your mailing list.
- Build a media kit featuring cover art, a photo, and reviews of the book/project.
- Create bookmarks or a nicely printed poem as a takeaway for your readings.
- Create business cards with your contact info and Web site. Always carry them with you.
Bottom line: It's OK to market yourself. Don't be shy about asking. You are your best advocate. If enough people hear your work, they will be ones championing you!