How do you promote your book? Part 2 of an interview with non-fiction author, Julie Wise

Today, motivational coach Julie Wise explains how she’s been promoting her new book, Dream BIGGER: Reclaiming a Life of Joy and Ease.

Motivational coach and mentor, Julie Wise

The effervescent Julie Wise

Julie, can you tell me why you created a blog as well as a website?
My website is designed to promote my coaching business. It does include a link to my book blog and a button for purchasing my book, but it also provides information on workshops I offer and other products I’ve created. I set up the blog to focus on the book. It’s much more than a blog; it has information on book reviews, events like my book signings, television and radio interviews, links to all the sites I ‘visited’ during my virtual book tour and so on. I post a new blog for that site every Monday and Thursday. I wanted a site that I could update regularly so I could keep people posted on the latest happenings with the book.

On television, your visual image is very important … Your message is almost secondary.

You’ve been travelling and appearing on talk shows on television and radio to promote your book. Did a publicist help you with this media coverage? Has it been a worthwhile experience?
My publicist set up the majority of the media appearances. She is based in the United States and has connections across the country so working with her was a very worthwhile experience. She was able to book a number of television interviews, advise me on what to wear, help me organise media releases and talking points for interviews. Some of the radio interviews I set up myself. The more exposure you have, the more you are seen as an expert in your field and the more likely people are to want your book.

Could you give readers any advice on media appearances?
Be well prepared! For television appearances, you generally have about 3 minutes for an interview (and that includes questions from the interviewer). So you need to know your material, focus on getting your main points across, and be animated at the same time. Being on television is quite a different experience from radio.

On television, your visual image is very important – what you wear (not busy or distracting colours or patterns), your hair and makeup, your mannerisms (how you sit, your gestures or facial expressions). Your message is almost secondary.

On the radio, all people hear is your voice and your message, so it’s important to speak calmly and not rush, focus on getting your points across, and sound friendly and happy.

Always think of the interviewer as your best friend, smile as you speak, and focus your attention directly at him or her (ignoring anything else that’s going on in the studio).

You recently completed a virtual book tour. Can you explain what this is and how you set up the interviews?
The virtual book tour was set up through my social media consultant. It’s a series of blog sites that feature either written interviews or guest blogs and book reviews.

On set dates, I went to specific blog sites, checked for comments under the blog interview or review of my book, and responded to the comments. It’s a way of doing a book “tour” without leaving home! And it provides an author with good internet exposure through the various blog sites.

Tell me about the Dream BIGGER Reinvention Challenge. Why did you decide on a contest?
When I first began working with my Dream BIGGER team (publicist, social media consultant and website designer), we discussed ways to promote the book on a large scale. One of the ideas was to create a 60-day online contest. The Dream BIGGER Reinvention Challenge was the result.

Over a period of 2 months, people could enter their dream and others could go to the pages and vote on the dreams that inspired them most. We wanted this to inspire the general public to dream bigger with their lives and consider new possibilities, especially during the challenges of recession.

It was a great success with nearly 900 visits and over 2700 page views from 20 different countries in just 60 days. The grand prize winner is currently receiving coaching, publicity and social media support on making her dream a reality.

I never could have envisioned all that’s occurred in the past year as a result of this book … So take a deep breath, and let the ride begin!

Which online communities could you recommend for writers to promote themselves and their books?
I’ve found that many of the social media sites are excellent sources for marketing and networking. LinkedIn has a Books and Writers Group, for example. I also use Twitter and Facebook for general marketing. Authorsden, Goodreads, Stumbleupon are a few that come to mind. BookCrossing is a wonderful way to send your book out into the world and watch as it travels. Amazon has a new page for authors to promote themselves, plus you can create a list that includes your book through Listmania. It’s also very beneficial to ask reviewers to post their reviews on Amazon.

Did you develop special workshops to introduce people to you and your book?
Yes, and that’s part of the focus for the coming year – giving workshops, talks, developing a teleseminar and podcasts … There are always more ways to generate interest and create a greater following.

Is there anything you would do differently with your next book in terms of promotions?
I think I’d recognise that it’s a more involved and intense process than I’d originally hoped! I’d try to be more relaxed and accepting of the time involved and take more time to truly appreciate and celebrate each milestone rather than be focused on what remains to be done.

I would definitely hire a support team again. It’s more effective and efficient (and sane!) than trying to do it alone. The great advantage to a second book is that you can build on the connections you’ve already made the first time around.

Would you say you’ve made a conscious effort to develop your brand? Or is this something that’s evolved?
I tried to develop it consciously, but I think it’s been evolving as well. It’s important to be open to the way you, your book, and your life are shifting and changing and work with the flow rather than against it.

What next? Do you have plans for other writing projects?
I did start back into writing the book on Ireland that I was working on when Dream BIGGER came along. But a few weeks ago, I became bored with that story, so it’s on hold for now. I think my focus for the next six months is on developing some other products. I believe there is another book gestating at the moment, but it hasn’t revealed itself to me yet.

If you could travel back in time to the moment before you started your publishing project, what advice would you give yourself?
Dream bigger, Julie! You see, I had a different ‘plan’ for my life and my writing, and what happened with this book is a perfect example of what the book is all about. I never could have envisioned all that’s occurred in the past year as a result of this book. There’s often a bigger plan for our lives than we can possibly imagine. So take a deep breath, and let the ride begin!

Where can people buy the book?
Dream BIGGER is available online through Amazon. In the United States, it’s also available online through Borders and Barnes and Noble. In Canada, online through Chapters.

Julie, thank you for sharing your story!

About the book

When life’s challenges get you down, and you feel like giving up on your heartfelt desires, it’s not time to quit. It’s time to dream even bigger! Dream BIGGER: Reclaiming a Life of Joy and Ease is filled with inspiring true stories, simple tools and exercises, and plenty of motivation. Learn how to re-chart your course and bring more joy and ease into your life as you pursue your dreams.

About Julie

Julie Wise is a motivational coach and mentor who helps people navigate change in their lives and achieve their dreams. She encourages people around the world to look beyond their current circumstances and envision a brighter future. Julie currently lives in Waterloo, Ontario, Canada. When she’s not coaching clients, she can be found dancing flamenco or exploring a windswept beach somewhere …

Julie’s website:

Julie’s blog:

The ‘Dream BIGGER’ contest:

How to go on national TV and not mention your book: A guest blog by Marianne Musgrove

Today I have a guest blog from author, Marianne Musgrove. Marianne recently appeared on two day-time television shows promoting her new book for children, Lucy the Lie Detector. Here she shares her advice about appearing on television if you’re promoting a book.

Promoting yourself on TV
How to go on national TV and not mention your book

by Marianne Musgrove

Following on from my now famous (at least in my family) appearance on Mornings with Kerri-Anne to promote my new book, Lucy the Lie Detector, I thought I’d share some lessons I’ve learned about making the most of your fifteen (or in my case, four) minutes of fame.

Marianne Musgrove

Marianne Musgrove

Getting on TV in the first place
Producers love an angle. When my publicist discovered I was a former social worker, she married this fact to the content of my book (truth and lies) and voila! I was an expert on children’s behaviour and lying. To find your angle, consider all aspects of your background (job, heritage, family situation, experience), not just the subject matter of your book.

What to wear
Children’s author and fellow “Mornings with Kerri-Anne” alumna, Fiona Trembath, advises: avoid jingly jewellery, wear something that reflects who you are and don’t wear a pattern that might strobe on screen.

Be prepared
Before you appear on the show, you’ll be contacted by a producer to discuss possible interview questions. They may ask you for talking points which will appear on screen during your segment. Have those points ready (no more than five per section).

Mention your book!
Some shows only permit you to mention your product once so get in early and make it count. Don’t wait to be asked the right question. I made the mistake of waiting for a certain graphic to come up. I never saw it and I missed out on mentioning my book!

Things may not go according to plan
When I was on Kerri-Anne, I wasn’t prepared for her opening question: what makes a child tell their very first lie? I did what we writers do best – I made something up. Be prepared to answer questions out of left field. Don’t panic. Just sound confident and no one will know the difference.

Familiarise yourself
Ask to take a peek in the studio before you go on. This will mean one less thing your brain has to process once you get on set. Ask how long the segment will be. When you sense your time drawing to a close, quickly mention anything you’ve left out.

Keep calm
Take a few deep breaths before you go on (though not too many – you don’t want to pass out and have to be revived on nation television). Speak at a regular pace.

Be camera-wise
It’s hard to smile when you’re nervous but it does make you more appealing. Steer clear of maniacal grins, however. You don’t want to scare away the viewers. Also remember: don’t look at the camera. I know that’s a bit like saying ‘don’t think of an elephant’ then all you can do it think of an elephant. Nevertheless, don’t look at the camera!

Bring a copy of your book on set with you. It’s a visual that’s a constant, free advertisement.Lucy The Lie Detector

I can guarantee you, you will make one or more mistakes while you’re on TV. I know I did. Forgive yourself, learn from your mistakes and move on.

Good luck!

Click here to see Marianne’s TV appearance.

And here for Marianne’s website.

This article first appeared in the e-newsletter Pass It On editions 300 and 301.