Book marketing is a lot like sales, and as any successful salesperson will tell you, it's often a numbers game. In other words, the more people you contact, the better chance you have of getting a response. However, before you fire off a bunch of emails, I strongly recommend creating a system to track your efforts. It will keep you organized, and it will also keep you from inadvertently pitching the same person more than once, which can be embarrassing.
I have a spreadsheet on my laptop called "Marketing" that includes several tabs, e.g. media, conferences, book clubs, etc. Each tab (or worksheet) includes a list of organizations, sorted alphabetically and by state. For each organization, I have columns listing a contact person's name and email address, the most recent date, nature and status of the interaction, and a website address.
I also use color codes. If the organization says no to whatever I'm proposing, I put it in red. If there is potential, I put it in yellow to remind myself to follow up. If we get something scheduled, I put it in green. I add to my marketing spreadsheet nearly every day and review it regularly to see which leads need following up.
You don't want to end up like this!
What I'm proposing may sound like a lot of work, but believe me, it's much better than the alternative, which is complete chaos! If you're diligent in your marketing efforts, soon you may have dozens, if not hundreds, of interactions with various organizations, so relying on memory to keep track of everything is impossible, not to mention extremely inefficient. Taking the time up front to create a spreadsheet or table will make your life much easier and lead to better results.
Maria Murnane writes romantic comedies and provides consulting services on book publishing and marketing. Learn more at www.mariamurnane.com.
This blog post originally appeared on CreateSpace.com. Reprinted with permission. © 2012 CreateSpace, a DBA of On-Demand Publishing, LLC. All rights reserved.