Each April (National Poetry Month), people across the country get excited about reading and writing poems. But what do you do once you’ve actually written and published your own book of poetry? How do you reach out to readers and attract an audience?
Here are five ways to promote you book of poetry:
- Make your poems easy to share. Because poems are generally short in length, they’re easy to share. Take advantage of this by showcasing your shorter poems, favorite lines or poetic musings in images that can be shared on social media sites like Pinterest and Facebook. Design something on your own using a program like Photoshop, or use free, online tools such as Pinstamatic or Quozio to help you out. Make sure each photo includes your author name and links back to your blog, website or bookselling page.
- Turn your poems into works of art. Work with a graphic designer or letterpress studio to feature one of your poems on a custom poster or broadside. This special piece of art will be a conversation starter (and selling item) at any event or reading you participate in. Poetry lovers and art lovers alike will be drawn to this unique takeaway that brings beautiful words and beautiful imagery together in a meaningful, memorable and lasting way.
- Host readings and book signings. Organizing a poetry reading is one of the most enjoyable and rewarding ways to share your work and interact face-to-face with poetry lovers. Contact coffee houses, libraries, bookstores, schools, art galleries, etc. — think outside the box to find a venue that makes sense for you and your book. Bring promotional materials — such as custom bookmarks, business cards and BookStubs — to give away to attendees. Also be sure to bring copies of your book and poetry broadsides to sign and sell.
- Tap into the power of audio. It’s a commonly held belief that poetry should be heard, not seen — that the real power of poetry lies in the spoken word, not on the printed page. Why not give your fans both options? To help promote your poetry book, consider capturing select poems in audio files. Bring your poems to life with your voice, and share your recordings through videos on your own YouTube channel or through your own podcast. You could also create an audiobook so poetry lovers can listen to you read each poem in your book.
- Connect with fellow poets. Whether you’re hosting a reading, keeping a blog or producing a podcast, you’ll be well served to include other poets in your efforts. When multiple poets take part in a reading, each poet can help contribute to promoting the event and attracting their own built-in followers. In the same way, if you interview emerging poets on your blog or invite other writers to read on your podcast, the people you feature will drive traffic back to your site and, as a result, help grow your following.
What tips and advice do you have for marketing books of poetry?