I recently received a tweet that left me scratching my head. A woman tweeted (to me, not to the world), a photo of herself holding a book. There was no accompanying note, no greeting or explanation, nothing. And she wasn’t holding up one of my books, so it clearly wasn’t a fan tweet.
I tweeted back asking if she’d forgotten to include a message with the photo. She replied that she was an author and thought I might want to read her book.
That’s all she wrote.
Book marketing takes a lot of work, and I commend any author who makes the effort to get the word out, but it’s important to make sure that your efforts make sense to the person on the receiving end of your outreach. The woman in question clearly took the time to send me a personalized tweet, but unfortunately her effort fell flat because it was so generic that I had to assume she’d sent the same thing to anyone and everyone she could find on Twitter. She also gave me the impression that she lacks common sense because when I replied to her and gave her the chance to explain, she didn’t even tell me what her book was about or why she had contacted me about it.
When you set out to promote your book, make sure to provide the people you’re contacting with context for why you’re getting in touch. And if you’re reaching out to fellow authors, it helps to let them know that you’ve either bought their books or plan to very soon. We all need to pay the bills, right?
As I said in a recent post, it’s always a good idea to put yourself in the recipient’s shoes before you hit “send.” No one wants to feel spammed.
This blog post originally appeared on CreateSpace.com. Reprinted with permission. © 2015 CreateSpace, a DBA of On-Demand Publishing, LLC. All rights reserved.