The Importance of Feedback on Marketability, Pre-Marketing, and Marketing

Feedback is important for both marketability and marketing.

Let me illustrate this with Read Tuesday.

There are four reasons that I’ve been seeking feedback on many stages of the development of Read Tuesday:

  • Marketability. Feedback from members of the target audience helps you assess your product’s marketability in addition to possibly giving you useful ideas or pointing out the need for revisions. This is something that every author should do with every book.
  • Pre-marketing. As you’re putting your next book together, if you seek input for the title, cover reveal, draft of a blurb, draft of the Look Inside portion, and so on before you publish, this helps to build buzz for your book.
  • Marketing: If your interactions involve other authors, publishers, editors, publicists, etc., in the process of receiving feedback, you may also establish useful leads and connections. This may lead to blog interviews, reblogs, and many other forms of help, especially if they like your idea or feel that they have become involved in the process.
  • Content: In my case, it provides some examples of things that authors can do with their own marketing. Many of the ideas you see going into Read Tuesday are things you might consider for your own marketing.

So keep these things in mind with your own books, and when you see me request feedback, consider how it might relate to your marketing.

I actually have a fifth reason. We’re all in Read Tuesday together. I want this to be inclusive, rather than exclusive. While I can’t use every idea, I do consider every idea, and I have tried to incorporate most of the ideas I’ve received. I value everybody’s input. This fifth reason doesn’t apply to writing books. Most good stories weren’t written democratically like this. So you probably don’t want to borrow my fifth reason, at least in regards to authorship.

I’m working on a press release kit for Read Tuesday, and I’m also thinking of other ways to show the Read Tuesday catalog. So this post offers another chance for anybody to provide feedback, ideas, suggestions, etc.

The main thing I’m looking for with the press release (however, feel free to share ideas for any part of it) is a sample of participation. I don’t want to leak pricing information early, but it may be helpful to show samples of authors or books that will be participating. The big problem is which books or authors to feature.

Naturally, every author should want to be featured. I could feature a different set of authors in different press releases, but I can’t include every author. So how do I choose? There are many ways this could be done. If you have ideas, I’ll consider them.

You can use the Contact Us form on Read Tuesday (or just click on my Gravatar on the sidebar and email me) if you’d like me to consider using your book. So far, very few authors have used the Contact Us forms, so if this continues as usual, your chances would be very good this way. 🙂

Also, do you have suggestions for the Read Tuesday catalog? You can check it out on the Read Tuesday website. I’ve only posted the very preliminary book catalog of the first books to sign up. I need to update it, and I also haven’t added the author catalog yet.

What I see on my end is a spreadsheet. I can sort it by genre or other information that was entered into the catalog. I didn’t include every column on the preliminary catalog, so there are a couple of things that I can add to it. If you have ideas for how the catalog could be better and it turns out to be fairly easy to implement it, please let me know.

Once the catalog grows large enough, I will probably post subcatalogs on different pages—e.g. one page for children’s fiction, or even one page for mystery if the list is long enough. I think this will help with organization (along with a menu).

If you haven’t already filled out the Google Docs forms to add yourself and books to the catalog, it’s not too late to do it. Remember, you don’t have to worry about price at this stage. Just click on the Author link on the Read Tuesday website to find the forms. It’s easy. (But if you have any issues, please let me know.)

Chris McMullen, author of A Detailed Guide to Self-Publishing with Amazon and Other Online Booksellers, Vol. 1 (formatting/publishing) and Vol. 2 (packaging/marketing)