After running the New England SCBWI conference “NetWits” track, I realized that lots of people find all the promotional choices bewildering. Common questions are:
- What’s the best way to market myself?
- What are the top five (or more!) things I should be doing as an author?
- What’s the minimum I need to do?
- Do I really need to do more than just write? (That’s all I really want to do!)
- How do I find the time to do it all?!
- What should I really need to do?
- What if I’m not techy?
- Do I need to be creating videos?
- What do I do at a school visit? How do I get them? What do I charge?
- What steps do I take to get published, either traditionally or independently?
- Should I have a web site if I’m not published yet?
- How do I promote my book?
- How should I create my platform?
- Why should I have a Facebook (fan)page, rather than just a (personal) profile?
- Will I be doomed if I don’t do anything?
- What are the dos and don’ts?
- What if I do it wrong?
The good news is I’ve learned a lot over the years since I was first published in 1998. In fact I even published a book about it called How to Promote Your Children’s Book: Tips, Tricks, and Secrets to Create a Bestseller (now being revised into a second edition packed with even more and updated info!) I’ve done hundreds of school visits and dozens of speeches. I’ve created and run workshops, and given keynotes and presentations at many national and local SCBWI , NAEYC, IRA, and Highlights Founders conferences, The American Association of University Women, and Connecticut Children’s Storybook Gala, among others.
Now I’m available for marketing consultations where I can support your specific promotion needs. The other good news is I am now available for consultations, guidance, brainstorming, TLC and general all around support for your publicity needs. I think outside of both the circle as well as the box and you’ll come away from the session with specific steps to take.
- step-by-step guidance (and hand-holding when necessary!) to set up online accounts for a blog, web site, Twitter, Facebook Pages, YouTube Channel, TeacherTube, Pinterest, etc.
- advice on how to build and design your author web site
- whether you need to, and how to hire a site designer and programmer
- advice on best book promotions for you and your budget
- personalized and specific idea sessions
- book trailer advice and critique – I’ll share the secrets I learned while creating my award-winning book trailers
- how to use YouTube to your best advantage (I am CRAZY about this, especially now that I’ve launched Video Idiot Boot Camp!)
- a downloadable PDF with answers to your questions, links to resources and actionable steps
$150/hour with a 2 hour minimum – $300. For new clients, I put the first hour into creating a takeaway document for you that will include a web site critique, social media strategies and critique, answers to your submitted questions, actionable steps for you to take, and ideas and suggestions for your particular situation. The PDF will be sent to you prior to our meeting in time for you to study and get more questions ready for the time we have left.
Each additional hour is charged at $150/hour.
Group Coaching via Webcam
- Two 1-hour sessions: $200 per person for at least five people (so comparing to one-on-one it’s $100/hour). While talking over webcam, we’ll go a minimum of an hour each scheduled session. You drive how we spend the time by pre-submitting the questions.
- Four one-hour sessions: $320 per person for at least five people (so comparing to one-on-one it’s $80/hour). Again, we’ll go a minimum of an hour per session. The following schedule is a suggestion and can be changed per your group’s needs
- Session 1: Social Media, including G+ (how to do Hangouts), Twitter, Pinterest & Facebook
- Session 2: The Top 5 Mistakes You Want to Avoid on Your Website, plus voluntary site critiques
- Session 3: How to Build Your Email List and WHY it’s crucial to have one!
- Session 4: Video and What to Do With It, plus live DIY animation demos
What else is included in the group coaching sessions?
- Peer support, input, and feedback because success is way easier when you have others to share with and learn from!
- Live demos where you can watch along as I show you things like:
- Using video in social media
- Clarifying promotional and social media trouble spots
- Video and media resources
- Q&A and anything requested by the group!
Consultation or Group Coaching Logistics
- I prefer meeting via Google+ hangout (so I can screenshare to show you resources and demo things for you. You’ll need to have a gmail account and download a plugin to be able to do a Google+ hangout. If you don’t have a gmail account, or don’t know how to have a hangout, go here to get started). We can also simply talk on the phone.
- I will ask you to fill out this questionnaire and send it to me.
- You’ll pick at least three dates and times that would work for you, and PLEASE send the eastern time! I am good at many things, but time math isn’t one of them! I book about three to four weeks in the future.
- Payments are due at time of booking as my work for you begins then. Once we book it, I will send you a Paypal invoice, payable upon receipt. Credit cards can be used through Paypal.
What’s Free and What’s Not?
I get lots of requests from people to help them with their social media and/or online promotion. In fact, so many people have asked for my help that I wrote that book I told you about (above) on how to do it all. I also talk about what you can do through my podcast, Brain Burps About Books.
But people kept asking for my advice, so I decided to launch this consulting service. I still give tons of advice gratis through my podcast and my blog, newsletter, and YouTube channel. But there can be confusion about this, so here are my guidelines regarding DIY online and offline promotion. My thanks to Chris Brogan for the inspiration:
- Free: I give away anything I know (and can remember!) when I am speaking at a conference, on my podcast, YouTube channel, or writing my blog or newsletter. If I am able to answer a question quickly by email, I will.
- Not necessarily free: when you request specifics that apply to your particular business or want my undivided attention.
- Free: the occasional 20 min Skype session with classes, teacher/librarians, or book clubs.
- Not free: taking me out for coffee, drinks, or lunch in order to get info I usually give in a consultation.
- Free: a five-minute find-out-what-you-need call or Skype with potential clients.
- Not free: what we’d discuss in a consultation.
- Free: the charity work I do with organizations that stir my heart and conscience.
- Free: guest appearances on your podcast, blog, or program.
- Not free: the prep and/or research time I may need to do on your behalf when you hire me. I try to keep it at a minimum, and we’ll discuss it prior to our meeting. It’s time spent working for you, and is part of your consultation time.
- Not free: a canceled appointment with less than 48 hours notice (50% “reshelving” fee applies)
- Free: an out-of-your-control cancellation of a scheduled appointment (honor system applies)
- Not free: second time around cancellation, even out-of-your-control situations (50% “reshelving” fee applies)
Recommendations From Katie’s Clients
Thank you for your time (and overtime) during our consultation today. I really appreciate all of the information that you shared, and can’t wait to explore and implement some of your ideas to improve my marketing and social media presence. Yes, maybe I’ll even tweet. The information in the packet and all of the info I’ve gotten from your site and newsletters have opened my eyes to many new aspects of self-publishing. Your generosity in putting all of this together for new authors is much appreciated.
Take care, Pat Mervine
As a newly published picture book author of The Museum, it has been necessary to build my platform. Navigating the world of technology and utilizing it in a way that makes sense as an author has been a daunting task. In over my head, I reached out to Katie Davis for consultation and guidance. Katie was able to take all of my goals and outline a way to prioritize and attain them. As part of her services she created a “consultation packet” filled with information relating to each goal. Where to get stock photos, how to use social media, ways to get people to my website and how to keep them interested as well as information about school visits and author events. Katie’s wealth of knowledge and technological skill have been instrumental in putting me on the right path. I appreciated the way Katie provided options and ideas but always came back to what I wanted and what I could manage making my journey my own. I highly recommend Katie Davis’s services. She is efficient, knowledgeable, highly skilled and extremely generous. I am continuing my work with Katie as I go on this journey… next stop Video Idiot Boot Camp! Thank you Katie.
Susan Verde, author of The Museum, illustrated by Peter Reynolds
Katie Davis is a kidlit expert, not to mention social media wizard. I hired her to go over my children’s picture book Kickstarter campaign. She shared a wealth of information, which I implemented into my project. It’s now more clear and concise. Katie is warm and funny and lives her motto of reciprocity. It made my day when I heard her talk about my Kickstarter project on her podcast. Thank you, Katie!
Cheers, Sue Shanahan
Last year I drove over 2 hours each way to hear Katie Davis speak about social media and I was not disappointed. So when I was matched with her for my NetWit Social Media and Promotion Consultation, I eagerly anticipated an informative and interesting meeting. As I expected, she was very helpful and in a short period of time, I learned a variety of new things I could implement. Katie explains things with a “can do perspective” that is very encouraging in a somewhat daunting arena – taking on the latest in technology to market my books effectively. I highly recommend her!
Debbie Blackington, Author/Illustrator