The Fab Avery Flynn really knows how to throw a party and she agreed to stop by and tell us her secrets to having fun and spreading the news about your new release!
Top 10 Ways to Throw a Successful Facebook Book Party
Face it, you’re used to partying like an author, not a rockstar. That means yoga pants and caf-feine instead of leather pants and whiskey…okay there might be whiskey and if leather pants are your thing, who am I to judge? 🙂
No matter what you’re wearing or drinking at your Facebook book party there are ways to make it more productive for you and the guest authors you bring on board. Here are my top ten tips for throwing a successful Facebook book party without a resulting hangover.
1. Planning – Decide how long you want your party to be. A cocktail hour, a half-day event or a full-on twelve hour party. That’s how you’ll know how many guest authors you’ll need to get to sign up. Also, decide what day you want to hold the party. It can be the day of release or a week after or a few months after. The bonus of having a party on release day is that it can build buzz for your book. The bonus of having a party after release day is to continue or in-crease that buzz.
2. Find Your Authors – About a month out from your party, start inviting authors you’d like to participate and create a Google document with all of the available time slots. Provide the link to the schedule along with information about the book, an offer for an ARC if they want it, ask if they want to do a giveaway and a link to the party page on Facebook. Quick note here: It’s much easier to get author participants if your time slot is 30 minutes, more than that is overwhelming and less than that doesn’t give the author a chance to connect with your par-tiers, which is the reason they are there—besides the fact that they love you, of course. Try not to pick the same authors for every party. The point of these is to create reader crossover for you and the guest author.
3. Decorate – You need to have an eye-catching party banner that includes your book cover. You can add in some text, such as the date and time of the party or a tagline, but I discourage you from making it too crowded. That may mean leaving off guest author names (but don’t worry they’ll get plenty of PR later on). Here are two examples of banners I’ve used.
4. Prepare – Pay special attention to the about the event information you include. This is where I recommend including every author name (being sure to tag them) and a little bit about the book. Be sure to include a start and end time as well as letting folks know how long the give-aways will be open to entries.
5. Send Invitations – Recently Facebook has implemented a cap on the number of people a sin-gle person can invite to a Facebook party. So you may not personally be able to invite every-one you want. In that case, you can encourage friends, street team members and others to in-vite people to your party. Also, be sure to share the link to your party on your Facebook pro-file and page with information about it including tagged mentions of who is coming. I usually start invitations about two weeks out, so people don’t forget about it.
6. Pre-Party – About a week prior to the party, start posting on the party page. Pin a post to the top with your book buy links. Everything else should be book excerpts with graphics, funny pictures and anything else you can think of that will get people to engage. Also during this time you should be continuing to share your party link on your profile and page.
7. Reminders – Three or four days before your party, send out a reminder to your author guests with the link to the Google document schedule, the party link, the graphic for the party and an encouragement to them to share information about the party if they can. Let them know any house rules for your party and let them know your available if they have any questions.
8. Schedule Social Media – A day or two before the party, schedule (using Hootsuite or another program) social media to announce when a guest author is at the party. Be sure to tag them or include their Twitter handle, if on Twitter. This will give your party a strong social media presence during the event without you having to remember to post while running the party. Here’s an example from my latest release party.
9. Mandatory Fun – Participate in the party with your readers. When a guest author posts a giveaway, dive right in and post your answers to their trivia question or hot guy picture. If things start to hit a lull, post something. About halfway through a guest author’s 30 minute slot is a good time to post a link to a review, graphic teaser or other post about your book.
10. Winners – Random.org is the best tool ever for picking giveaway winners after the party is over. The morning after your party, you can copy all of the entries for a giveaway. All you need to do is copy all of the comments for a giveaway, go to Random’s list randomizer op-tion, paste the information into the box and hit randomize. The commenter at the top is now your winner. Easy. Peasy. Put the full list of winners in a pinned post and don’t forget to tag the winners and authors in it.
So those are my tips for hosting a successful Facebook book release party. What makes your top ten must-do list that’s not on mine?
And if you’re wearing rockstar leather pants right now, post pics! 🙂
Do you have a tip you can add to this list? Have Facebook parties worked for you?
Karen Sanderson joins us on Monday!
Avery Flynn is a writer, smartass and lover of chocolate. Her latest book, Hollywood on Tap, is a contemporary romance filled with smexy times, sassy banter and smoking hot romance. You can find her all over social media and at her website (www.averyflynn.com).
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