Having listened to the promotional strategy advice of a wide variety of people, I'm planning to accomplish two things this weekend. One will be to set up Hootsuite (or some equivalent social media manager, but that's the one people seem to prefer) to handle automated promotional reminders that I rarely have the emotional energy to do manually. The other will be to set up an opt-in (of course!) newsletter for fans and readers to provide both a direct way to communicate announcements and other information, and to provide special content in exchange for access to attention. I figure to aim for absolutely not more often than once a month except for things like unexpected special sales (which I never know about in advance). Maybe less often than once a month, we'll see. I have a hard time planning these things because I'm not a newsletter reader myself, so I have to figure out what works for people who are.
So what sort of content will the newsletter provide? A lot of it will be just basic information:
- Upcoming/New publication information
- Upcoming appearances
- Current projects
But I'll also be offering some special content not available to people who don't subscribe to the newsletter. And that's where you come in. Here are some ideas of my own, plus suggestions people have made online. Which of these would entice you to sign up for and read a newsletter? What other content would entice you?
- Worldbuilding information (Alpennian language, geography, history, etc.)
- Snippets of work in progress (no spoilers!)
- Exclusive previews of Alpennian short fiction (stories that will eventually be released either free or as a collection, but that I'm not trying to sell individually)
- Discussions of my writing process (for example, I kept a diary of how the plot of Daughter of Mystery developed as I was drafting it)
- Alpennia fan art (with the artists' permissions, of course!)
- Access to Alpennia swag (there is none yet, but I have some ideas percolating -- what would you be interested in?)
Let me know what you think. I'm still trying to get my mind around the psychological aspects of doing a newsletter and how it would differ from my blog, other than providing me with a list of people who have expressed a particular level of commitment and interest to following my writing.