Dear book promotion sites: Please stop spamming authors
As someone who has worked in marketing to promote authors, I understand the reasoning behind the subject line. Even so, it just wasn’t enough to grab my attention. It was enough to get the email deleted. Why?
I don’t do business with people who think it’s okay to spam others.
For some time now, I have networked with other authors, book publicists, marketing reps and book bloggers. I have spent some time communicating with them, getting to know them, and creating some kind of relationship with them to the point where they have earned my trust. These are people whose names I KNOW and if I get an email from any of them, I just might respond to it! Well, that can’t be said of everyone I have worked with. Some work relationships went south because I learned the person was shady or we have unresolved issues that are not going to magically disappear just because they popped into my life again with an offer to work together again on something new. Also, if I just accepted your friend request or followed you on Twitter, throwing your promotion services at me right then and there is not going to win me over. I also follow book promotion sites as well as book bloggers on Twitter because I hope to establish a connection with them and get to know more about them should I ever take interest in their book-reviewing or book-promotion services. I want to get comfortable with a person first and get to know them better as well as what services they offer before making the next move.
That said, anybody who is in the business of promoting authors or marketing books who I DO NOT KNOW and who sends me an email offering to promote my book is simply wasting their time. Those emails either get no response or they are deleted.
Not only this, but why would I all of a sudden get all excited about promoting a book that was published over 3 years ago? If the book has been out for a while, I seriously doubt anybody’s going to care if I all of a sudden start promoting it again. An exception is made with books which have evergreen topics – like my book, 365 Tips For Writers. Every December, I spend some time promoting this book because I am hopeful someone who hopes to get more writing done in the new year will see this book and consider buying it. The same goes with my breast cancer ebook; it usually gets touted in October (along with anything related to Halloween). But if one of my books wouldn’t serve that purpose, then it usually doesn’t get another promo push after I finish my initial promo campaign after the book is released. (Sometimes, though, I just don’t have the energy for those promo opps. I have to deal with the occasional funk!)
It’s nice to think that someone took notice of my book and wants to promote it, but in the real world, I know they are only trying to sell their promotion or marketing services. They really don't care if their promotion or review of my book means it will spark sales; they are only interested in getting money from me and hoping I'll be naive enough to give it to them!
Maybe there are authors out there who are okay with being spammed by these services and have no problem shelling out money to get their book listed on some website or reviewed on some blog, but I am not one of them. If you want to promote one of my books, maybe we should try communication first. Connect with me through Facebook or Twitter and let me know who you are. Let me see your pages or newsfeeds for myself and let me decide if I would like to take you up on your promotion services. I’m not one of those authors who will pay for a review, but I am interested in other things like blog tours, and if I know who you are and what you do, I just might want to click on your links myself to learn more.