PUBSLUSH.. what is it and why as authors do we need it? Please welcome award winning author and teacher Dorit Sasson to the blog today to explain.
Why Authors Need to Plan for a Pubslush Campaign
Why Authors Need to Plan for a Pubslush Campaign
I'm sure you've heard the well-known saying by Sir Winston Churchill, "he who fails to plan is planning to fail," and this principle applies to everything in life including a Pubslush campaign.
Crowdfunding for authors is a hot topic these days and many authors like myself are not overlooking its importance to help build a name for oneself. Pubslush is a global crowdfunding platform that works specifically with authors to help gather pre-orders, build a readership community, and raise funds for everything from marketing to research and travel.
Although it's probably the fastest way to get funds, it takes a great deal of work to make it a successful experience. Let's see what goes into the planning phase.
Writing the Book
This may seem obvious, but writing the book is often overlooked. Although you can raise funds and build an engaging community of readers with a manuscript in progress, your supporters will want to feel they're investing in your book. If you offer a published copy of your book as a reward too long down the road, your book might be off their radar.
Planning the Rewards
You'll want to offer incentives that are enticing at each reward level. This requires some thinking. If you come up with fun, fantastic rewards for your crowdfunding crowd, you'll be amazed at how a campaign can take off.
Reaching out to an initial group of supporters
Amanda Barbara, co-founder of Pubslush, advised me to gather at least 5-10 supporters who could support the book. That way, the campaign wouldn't start with just zero which would initially give others a good impression about the campaign. Already I'm learning who is on my side and who isn't. It's truly an eye-opening experience!
I reached out personally to those I intuitively felt would be my closest cheerleaders. It's good practice to nurture relationships and support your fellow colleagues. This is one way to build a supportive collaborative community.
Making a comprehensive list of potential supporters
When I queried traditional publishers, I created a non-fiction book proposal which included a hefty twenty page publicity and media section. Over the years I've built my platform and a following based on connections I've made at in-person events and on Facebook. I've gotten to know people who've reached out to me from blog posts and relationships I've forged by guest blogging. I've interviewed several authors for my global radio show Giving Voice to Your Story over the last few years.
On a Word document, I wrote the name of every person with whom I felt I had a relationship with and came up with a few hundred friends, family and acquaintances from groups and other Jewish organizations including the National Council of Jewish Women, teachers I've worked with over the years both in Israel and the United States, the Facebook page of my graduating class, and colleagues I met at online and offline writing workshops and conferences.
I also intend to use the power of LinkedIn specifically to help gather attention to my campaign and to reach out specifically to professionals in my network. There is great power coming up with numbers of people in your tribe knowing that you can reach out to them.
Just Putting Myself Out There
1.I asked my network if bloggers would want to host me during the month of July as a resource for writers. I would blog about my Pubslush experience and what goes into a successful campaign. These posts like the one you’re reading now, would be resources for authors who may be potentially interested in starting their own Pubslush campaign. So far, six bloggers stepped up to my call.
2. I reached out to several local libraries and I've sent out Facebook invites to the members of the Pittsburgh community for a reading of my chapter at my home. If you're in Pittsburgh during July 6th, please connect with me. I'd love to see you at my reading.
3. I'm in the process of putting the news of my campaign in my newsletter and in various newsletters where crowdfunding for authors is relevant.
Word of mouth marketing is the most powerful tool authors have these days. It can sell anything!
As you can see, there's a lot that goes into pre-planning a Pubslush to ensure its success. Success doesn't just happen by only posting the news of your campaign online. You need to connect with people and put yourself out there in the most creative way possible.
Have you ever done a Pubslush campaign? How did you plan for it? Do you have any fun or interesting suggestions to help make it a success?
Dorit Sasson writes for a wide range of print and online publications including The Huffington Post and speaks at conferences, libraries, and community centers. She is the author of the compelling memoir Accidental Soldier: A Memoir of Service and Sacrifice in the Israel Defense Forces. Read a complimentary first chapter over at her Pubslush campaign and learn some very cool rewards and how you can become a supporter. She lives in Pittsburgh with her husband and two children. She can also be reached at: firstname.lastname@example.org