Release day parties are wonderfully fun and the great thing is that each one is different from the next. You can do whatever you want, follow your own set of rules. I have not done my own release day party yet, but I have been an author guest for one (Terri Rochenski’s Party for Love’s Revenge.)
You can do a party anywhere, but I’m going to share tips on how to do a Facebook party.
1. Set a date.
Usually this will be the actual release of your book or the first Monday or Friday after it.
2. Decide on a time frame.
A release party can last one hour, four hours, or twelve hours. It’s up to you!
TIP #1: No matter how long your party is, make sure it’s updated with new posts regularly to keep guests entertained and to get them to participate. You don’t want to have a twelve-hour party with nothing happening.
3. Decide if you want author guests (or co-hosts) to come in and help out.
You can do the party all by yourself, you can invite a ton of authors to pop in and post whenever they feel like it, or you can specifically ask authors if they would like to participate and assign them an hour (or two, depends on you and the author) to promote their own work and do giveaways.
TIP #2: The authors will need a personal Facebook profile in order to post to the event. They can’t do it through their fan page, which can create a problem if they have a pen name. I had to create a person profile under my pen name in order to participate in Terri’s party.
|This is one of the prizes I offered Terri's fans. I made them both,|
and the party was in January so the snowflake and colors were perfect for winter.
4. Set up a schedule.
If you’re going to have author guests come in throughout the day and keep your party goers interested, you should create a schedule so you know when each author will have his or her time to have fun.
5. Create the event.
You can do this on Facebook. On the left hand side, under your name and profile picture, click on “Events” then click “+Create.” You can give it a catchy title or keep it simple. Write a small description in the “Details” area. You can include the guest schedule. Fill in the sections for “Where,” “When,” and set the “Privacy.” Finally, add the cover art for your release or a banner.
6. Announce your event.
Announce your event on your Facebook page, Twitter, blog, website, Google +, and any loops or groups you’re part of.
7. Invite people.
Notify the author guests and send them a link so they can join the party and invite their family and friends.
TIP #3: Don’t forget to ask the people who join to invite everyone they know. With luck, you could have 200+ people “going” to your Facebook party.
Figure out what you want to do during your party. Will you do everything for the duration or have co-host? If you have co-hosts, be ready to host the first and last hours of your party, and to introduce each guest before it’s their hour to take over.
9. Posts and giveaways.
Know what you’ll post and at what time.
When I co-hosted for Terri, I did two ebook giveaways, a small jewelry giveaway, and a grand prize giveaway. In-between these I posted questions for the party-goers to answer. I had one hour, so I was posting about every five minutes and keeping up with comments. At the end of my hour, I announced the winners of the smaller giveaways and reminded everyone the grand prize giveaway would end the next day. To win the grand prize, they had to “like” my Facebook page. So I kept track of the likes I got.
|This was the grand prize. A gorgeous crystal bowl and a matching fashionable scarf.|
TIP #4: A giveaway can be anything: book swag, signed print books, ebooks, jewelry, home décor, gift cards, or something related to one of your books.
TIP #5: Try not to giveaway the book the party is for. You want people to buy it, not to enter a giveaway and hope they win it.
TIP #6: Someone can be eligible for a giveaway by posting a comment to the giveaway post or by doing something more such as liking your Facebook page, following your blog or Twitter, etc.
TIP #7: You can do your own giveaways at the beginning and end of your party and also let your co-hostsdo giveaways. That way many of your party goers have a chance to win.
TIP #8: After you randomly select a winner, check to see if someone else announced them as a winner for another prize. I noticed quite a few people for Terri’s party were the winners for several different giveaways, even mine. If you check first, you can do another drawing to get a new person who hasn’t won anything.
10. HAVE FUN!
Don’t stress about this! If you have guest authors, they will take off a lot of the pressure. Enjoy your time in the spotlight!
I was just one co-host out of many but I loved it! I got a lot of great feedback and guests even said they loved me. :D
11. Clean up time.
When the party is over, thank everyone for coming and especially thank your guest authors. You can do something special to thank them such as entering them in a giveaway for your book or send them all a mobi copy of it.
Also, you’ll want to announce the winners of your giveaways and notify him/her. You can tag them in a comment, send a private message or an email. Then get the information you need to send them their prize.
FYI: You don't need a lot of readers to do this. If you have authors as co-hosts, their readers will come to your party. Also, don't expect to sell a ton of books. This is for people to have fun and spread the news about your book. Many will be there for the prize, but you will generate interest and possibly a few sales.
SHARE: Your tips for hosting a Facebook release party.
QUESTIONS: Have you ever hosted or co-hosted a release party? What was your experience? Have you ever joined a release party as a guest?
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