Friday, October 17, 2014

New Release Marketing Plan

by Anita Mae Draper

Forgive the lopsided banner on this post, but I used a cropped version of my Facebook Author page since I want to show you all the marketing involved in my new release, A Cup of Christmas Cheer.

I am so very honored that Guideposts Books chose Here We Come A-Wassailing for their 2014 edition of A Cup of Christmas Cheer (CoCC) Volume 4 Heartwarming Tales of Christmas Present. Last year if you recall, I made my publishing debut with the short story, Riding on a Christmas Wish which Guideposts published in CoCC Volume 1 Tales of Faith and Family for the Holidays. 

For the record, Guideposts Books (GB) does not require their authors to promote their books as they have an excellent marketing team for that purpose, so you might be surprised by this post on our marketing efforts, but we're so excited about our stories that we can't help promoting it.

Last year when CoCC Vol 1 & 2 was nearing release, some of us authors banded together on a private Facebook page and decided on a hosting a blog hop. We offered prizes at each stop of the hop, and then a grand prize worth about $120. This was on top of our personal blogging, tweeting and facebooking as we promoted our 2-volume set which for several of us, was our debut publishing credit. We were rewarded when the books sold so well that GB ordered a second printing.

Here we are in Oct 2014 and again, the authors are working together for promotion. Some of us were published in Vol 1&2, but many are new to these sweet little books. Once again we have a private Facebook page where we discuss ideas which one of the authors, Keli Gwyn, works as our liaison with our editor, Jon Woodhams, who in turn checks with the GB marketing team.

From this arrangement, we have developed some great promotional tools including a CoCC blog where each of us has scheduled a day to post about our stories. The blog has been live for over a week and includes posts from editor Jon Woodhams about the inspiration behind the CoCC books, and an interview about how he and his team chose the different stories.

Included with the CoCC blog are the following pages which are being continually updated:
- Stories - describes all 4 CoCC volumes
- Authors - links to online appearances
- Giveaways - some fabulous draws are in the works
- Pinterest - links to the authors' story boards

One final thought on the blog... if you want to keep up with the posts, giveaways, etc, you can Follow the Blog via Email. The details are on the blog's right sidebar.

The following promotional tools allow GB to see us on Twitter and Facebook where they retweet us for greater exposure
- #cupofchristmascheer 
- @GuidepostsBooks 

Just when I thought we were doing everything we could, Keli gave us some more good news in that we now have an official public Facebook page. If you LIKE it, you can choose to receive notifications of giveaways, blogposts, etc. 

Keli has added A Cup of Christmas Cheer to goodreads where GB is giving away 5 sets of CoCC Volume 3&4 in a draw that ends Nov 14, 2014.

GB has donated several more book sets to be given away on the CoCC blog and at our Facebook party which is tentatively scheduled for Nov 6. 

We've been assigned a special link to the ShopGuideposts page which allows GB to keep track of which orders are being made on behalf of the promotional efforts of the authors. Yes, if you're going to order, please use this one:

Or click on this button which I've already linked to the Shop Guideposts page. 

This is so exciting!

Before I close off, I might as well give you the links to my social media hangouts:
Pinterest boards including Christmas and Fall/Thanksgiving
Here We Come A-Wassailing CoCC story board

Don't forget about my Giveaway here at the Inkwell where I'm giving away a copy of A Cup of Christmas Cheer Volume 3 & 4 to one randomly-chosen commenter. Be sure to leave a comment with a way to contact you to be entered! The drawing ends Monday, Oct 20, 11:59 EDT.

So, have I fired you up enough to click one of the links? I wasn't a fan of Pinterest boards at the beginning, but now they are my go-to place for images and recipes. :)


Anita Mae Draper is retired from the Canadian Armed Forces and lives on the prairie of southeast Saskatchewan, Canada with her hubby of 30 plus years and the youngest of their 4 kids. She writes cowboy stories set in the Old West, and Edwardian stories set in the East. Anita Mae's short story, Riding on a Christmas Wish is published in A Christmas Cup of Cheer, Guideposts Books, October 2013. She is honored that Guideposts Books has chosen a second short story, Here We Come A-wassailing, for inclusion in the 2014 A Cup of Christmas Cheer Vol 3&4 book set. Anita Mae is represented by Mary Keeley of Books & Such Literary Management. You can find Anita at


  1. I think the coolest thing about collections of short stories and novellas is the way the authors work together to support one another. It creates a great synergy. It's also a way for readers to get a feel for a lot of new authors in one book.

    1. I agree, Dina. This book series has changed my way of thinking on that score because whenever I saw a novella collection before, I didn't know how the individual authors marketed it without sounding like the book was completely their own.

      But now I see that it doesn't matter. The book is mine because I had a hand in its creation regardless of how many authors I share it with.

      And if I can reach a number of people through my promotional efforts, then that number is increased exponentially when you take the other authors into account.

      Thanks for sharing your thoughts on this, Dina.

  2. Great post, Anita Mae. Very practical and helpful for authors looking to promote their books. I also enjoy reading what you've been up to!

    I love your story. I am so excited for you!

    1. Thanks, Susie. I remembered after posting this that I was going to include a checklist of things I need to do personally for a new release - like updating my website and inform my writing groups so they can add it to their website's New Release/Announcement pages. I haven't even added this release here on my Inkwell author page.

      I can't stress enough that most of this personal promotion should be done prior to the actual release date.

  3. Forgot to say Thank You to Lisa for her lovely new blog background. Love it!

  4. So cool! And so excited for you, Anita! :D

  5. Thank you, DeAnna. Since you also write for a publisher who sells to a dedicated subscriber base, I was going to ask you how you handle promotion but didn't get the email out. The difference is that GB decided to publish these seasonal books as well as their normal lines. If you come back, can you answer if your publisher has ever done that?

  6. I haven't heard of them doing that, Anita, but that doesn't mean they haven't. They have two or three new lines going now, so who knows what they might do? :D

  7. Anita, this is really helpful info, and I love that you saw results from all of your hard work. Congratulations!

    1. Thanks, Suzie. I'm hoping that others can pick up some of these ideas for their own New Release campaigns. :)


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We, the ladies of Inkwell Inspirations, would love to give free stuff to everybody. Since we can't, we will often have a giveaway in conjunction with a specific post. Unless otherwise stated, one winner will be drawn from comments left on that post between the date it was published and the end of the giveaway as determined in the post. Entries must be accompanied by a valid email address. This address is used only to contact the commenter in the event that he/she is the winner, and will not be sold, distributed, or used in any other fashion. The odds of winning depend on the number of entrants. NO PURCHASE, PLEDGE, OR DONATION NECESSARY TO ENTER OR TO WIN. ALL FEDERAL, STATE, LOCAL AND MUNICIPAL LAWS AND REGULATIONS APPLY. VOID WHERE PROHIBITED.