The presenter at this workshop is a community relations manager from one of the local Barnes & Noble stores. She admitted at the outset that she was having a scatterbrained day, and that did show. She obviously knew her stuff, and I think she'd be a great person to have on your side when planning a signing or a launch party. But she didn't have an outline or a structure or any such thing beloved by logical, linear me. However, I did glean some useful tips:
- When interacting with people who can help promote your book, always consider THEIR perspective. Never forget to treat them as people, rather than tasks--and you'll be rewarded by them treating YOU as a person.
- To understand your target audience, think of its core, not its periphery. (e.g. for me it might be the intersection of Bernard Cornwell's and Naomi Novik's readership) Aim all your marketing efforts at finding those people.
- When planning an event like a book signing or a release party, consider the target audience for that particular event. What are you competing against for their attention? What reasons do they have to stay home or go elsewhere? To cite an obvious example, you wouldn't want to hold a signing for your baseball book during a World Series game.