You wouldn’t write a book for a child using the same tone and style as one for an adult, so why market it the same way? There will be some similarities, sure, but your audience sees things at a whole different level – literally. At the same time, you have to find a way to appeal to the big person with the money, too.
Self-publishing a children’s book is harder than putting out something like 50 Shades of Gray, because children demand honest fiction – not just what sells. The marketing strategy must be equally as honest. Got a children’s book ready to go to the publisher? Congratulations, now how are you going to market it?
Develop a Virtual Persona
Children are very Internet savvy, so take the protagonist, or main characters, and create an online identity. Let’s look at an example of this in action. How would L. Frank Baum go about marketing The Wonderful Wizard of Oz today? He would start with social media.
Set up a Facebook page for Dorothy and her friends. This could be done as a group or you could give each one their own fan page just to increase the Internet presence for the book.
Create a Twitter page for each and establish a hashtag campaign for book discussions:
Something easily associated with the story. Other social media tricks to think about include:
- Create up a Pinterest page for the book or characters and invite children to post their own drawings related to the story.
- Set up a YouTube channel and encourage kids to talk to your characters on video or to do readings from the book. They will love seeing themselves as part of the story.
- Develop a blog just for the book. This is where you can post information for mom and dad like an author Q&A and event schedules.
Every book marketing tool should refer in some way to the social media assets created for book promotion. Business and virtual cards can have a link to the Facebook page, for example. You can include your hashtag on ads or in your forum and email signatures.
Create Colorful Media Presentations
Kids respond to color, so the brighter your posters and signage is, the better it will attract your audience.
- Bookmarks and pins to hand out to kids
- Posters that grab their attention with illustrations from the book
- Flyers and ads to promote events using blurbs from the story or character quotes
If you set up at a book fair, try to create a multimedia presence, as well. Image a monitor showing Dorothy reading the story. This will draw kids over to watch the video and pique their curiosity.
Schedule Kid-Friendly Book Events
The basic book signing isn’t going to do it in the children’s market. Contact libraries, bookstores, child care centers and schools to arrange a story hour, instead. You can read a bit of your book and maybe another one for the kids.
It takes imagination to write a good children’s story. Now, put that same creativity into your book promotion, so kid’s notice you.
Keep the Faith and May the Force be with You!