Launch day is coming up. June 27th! If you’re not on the pre-launch list yet, click here.

Why you should get on the list:

  • You get the book for free before it comes out.
  • You get the inside scoop during launch week–what is it like to launch a book? I’m documenting the process to this email list.

This always happens — launch day is coming up much faster than I anticipated, and there’s so much to do. I love it. I know I’ll barely get everything done, but I work best when I’m under pressure like this. Here’s a look into my strategy over the past several weeks:

Building Buzz

The most effective way to get people excited about something is to let them be a part of it. Rather than directly pitching people on why they should read my book, I want them to genuinely be excited about it. It’s not about convincing people that it will be valuable, it’s about being transparent with my story and documenting the natural excitement that comes along with a book launch.

People want to be a part of exciting things, and publishing a book is exciting. I want to give people who are interested a chance to have a part in the creation of this thing. When they see the creative process from start to finish, they’re more likely to become invested in the final product.

I call this building buzz. Imagine the 20 minutes of anticipation before your favorite band comes on stage at a concert. That’s the feeling I’m trying to capture.

I did this two major ways.

1) Ask people to help me choose a title and cover.

A few weeks ago I did a brain dump and ended up with about 50 potential titles and subtitles for this book. I (painstakingly) narrowed it down to my top 3.

I posted those 3 options on a few different platforms and asked people to help me choose. Some really good feedback was shared and a lot of people engaged. I wasn’t selling or pitching anything directly, but by getting people to offer their own opinions and insights, everyone who voted now has a vested interest in seeing this book come out, even if it’s minor.

Here are the results:

A: 21

B: 13

C: 15

Despite losing the popular vote, option B pulled a Donald Trump and still made it onto the cover. It was the one I liked the most at the start, and the reasons and feedback for it outweighed the quantity of votes for both of the other options.

Next comes the book cover.

Book covers are visual and tend to get more people engaged. I love hearing why people like certain covers more than others. During this competition, everyone becomes a contemporary art critic.

Here are the results:

A: 46

B: 2

C: 1

This time I went with the most popular one. It was a clear winner and I liked it best from the start anyways.

2) Start a Thunderclap campaign.

I heard about Thunderclap from Taylor Pearson’s long essay about book launch marketing. It follows the same principle of building buzz — not directly pitching, but allowing people to become involved and invested on their own accord.

The idea of a thunderclap is fascinating. Imagine if thousands of people in a stadium clapped in unison. It would be much more loud and thunderous than if their claps were not synced up. Thunderclap does this with the internet. It is a crowdspeaking platform. It’s like crowdfunding, but supporters donate their social reach instead of money.

When you create a campaign, you choose a link to be shared on a specific date and time. Everyone who supports the campaign will automatically post the link on social media at that exact time, effectively reaching many more people at once. If timed correctly, this “thunderclap” can push a book into otherwise unreachable heights on the Amazon store.

Want to support my Thunderclap campaign? I could use your help! Click here. My goal is 100 and I’m currently at 23.

What’s next?

The book launches in 16 days. It should be fully edited in a little over a week and the audiobook should be completed in a little over two weeks. My main focus over this next week is getting closer to my goal of 100 for my Thunderclap campaign.

Thanks for reading. Check out this crispy image that Jackie Blum made for me.

**This is Part II of a series documenting my book launch marketing strategy. Click here to watch it unfold live.**

Part I | Part III