Marketing Q&A with Meerkat Press
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How valuable are book reviews for your authors? How do you leverage them to encourage sales?
With the overwhelming selection of books available, we think reviews are extremely important, especially for new publishers and authors. Amazon and Goodreads reviews help individual readers make decisions. Bloggers reach individuals on a larger scale, and a great industry review is invaluable in catching the eye of independent booksellers. We share links to good reviews on social media regularly.
With giveaways a popular form of marketing for publishers, do you find them successful? Why or why not?
We’ve run Goodreads giveaways, mainly because we are small and Goodreads takes care of everything except the shipping of the books so it is an efficient way for us to manage the process. We’ve seen a noticeable increase in activity, both sales and the number of Goodreads members who add our books to their ‘to-read’ list during giveaways.
Do you have a favourite social media channel and why?
Our personal favourite is Twitter. With so much media available, the Twitter 140-word limit actually does a great job in forcing discipline with our messages. It also lets us get a high level feel for what is going on with others in the industry so that we can choose what to drill down on. Sometimes, an entire message can be contained in a creative hashtag!
Do you plan your social media posts far in advance or do you post as you see fit?
We do both. We have a Social Media Manager who manages the overall schedule. He has an engagement agenda that is more concerned with building a long term relationship with our followers than promoting things. On the marketing side, we will pop in and post links to reviews or other press, reminders to sign up for giveaways, etc. If we do it too often, though, our SMM will definitely let us know about it.
Have you ever connected a title to a major event? Was it effective in building an audience and readership?
We published a wonderful poetry collection in December, My Cruel Invention, about inventions and inventors, real and imagined. The editor of the collection, Bernadette Geyer, who also does workshops on using social media, came up with the brilliant idea of using famous inventors’ birthdays to share specific poems in the collection. So on H.G. Wells’ birthday, by way of example, she will celebrate the event with an excerpt from a poem about H.G. Wells.
About Meerkat Press
Meerkat Press is an Atlanta-based independent press committed to publishing irresistible, unforgettable prose and poetry. We are drawn to books we like to read, so with a diverse group of voracious readers on staff that covers a wide range of genres and styles. When we aren’t busy publishing, you’ll generally find us curled up someplace with a great book.
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What is your favourite social media channel? Why?