by Cynthia Herron
Anticipating a book launch is a little like anticipating childbirth, both thrilling and terrifying. We’re excited about our book birthday, but there’s a lot of hard work leading up to that point.
In addition to writing the book, launching it takes coordinated effort by the author, the publisher, the marketing team, and so on.
Cheerleaders—those who will happily and consistently share news of our upcoming book—are also vital to a successful book launch. The launch team, or “street team,” is the rocket fuel in an author’s go-for-launch book baby ship. They’re the juice that propels our book into the hands of eager readers.
A savvy, well-positioned launch team will ensure a successful book launch. Ideally, the team will generate buzz and continue to build on that.
When I assembled my launch team for His Love Revealed, I’d learned from the efforts of my début novel, Her Hope Discovered, and I built on those. I ran my team somewhat differently than the first time, creating a private Facebook group several weeks prior to launch, and I shared clearly (and lovingly) what was expected of each member. I also communicated regularly with my team via e-mail.
Prior to selecting team members, here’s what I said.
The best team members are those who are fans of the author’s work and genre, and they are excited to launch said book baby into this big, beautiful world.
When selected, launch team members understand:
- Specific tasks are required of members. This includes sharing book memes (no spoilers), bookstagrams, blog posts, tweets, social media snippets, and more.
- Honest book reviews are appreciated. Team members are encouraged to post their reviews to major book sites.
- Expressing why the team member enjoys said book is not only helpful, but necessary. Excitement breeds excitement!
- A healthy social media presence is key. Posting often to Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and/or a blog are musts. Sharing within a member’s sphere of influence is awesome!
- Healthy launch teams bond. They pull together when things get crazy. They brainstorm creative ways to continue momentum. They laugh together, pray together, and encourage the author and one another.
- What’s said privately to the team, stays within the team. This builds trust and promotes a safe environment for everyone.
- There will be goodies and giveaways along the way. Some small things, some big things to keep our mission fun!
While each author’s methods are different, this is how I approached organizing a cohesive book launch team. Again, there are things I’ll refine next time.
And a sidenote—many authors are choosing to forgo launch teams in favor of trying new marketing efforts. There is no “one size fits all.” In today’s everchanging dynamic, creativity isn’t limited to the tried and true or what’s worked well for others. That’s why we’re all different!
What are your tips for building a successful book launch team?
Have you served on a street team? What was your favorite part? What did you learn?Building a successful book launch team depends on key factors. Helpful insights to get you started. @C_herronauthor #ACFWBlogs #writetips #ChristianFiction #ACFWCommunity Click To Tweet
Cynthia Herron writes Heartfelt, Homespun Fiction from the beautiful Ozark Mountains. A hopeless romantic at heart, she enjoys penning stories about ordinary people facing extraordinary circumstances. His Love Revealed, book two in the Welcome to Ruby series, released October 2020. “Cindy” loves to connect with friends at her online home. She also hangs out on Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, and Instagram. Her work is represented by WordServe Literary.