OK, back on topic. The launch party!!
So, I put postcard flyers out everywhere, and what did it net me? Nothing. Not a damn thing. Also, the table tents I purchased for the location were thrown out by one of the staff, because they were "unaware". I did confirm with the head staff member about 94 times that the event was taking place, but still... an "unaware" staff member threw out $30 of my launch. Scratch that, $28. We found ONE of the table tents shoved in a corner, so I took it home at the end of the night (Thanks Gunther!)
So, what the F*** did I learn.
Nothing else matters
No one picks up physical things anymore. Not a single person.
People are flakey as hell, and don't read.
If you can't capture your audience in less than 15 words, you lose.
Wow, that was a lot of lessons in one.
Buy them... buy them all
Advertising to get your face in front of people works. If you have disposable income, do it. If not... I hope you have disposable time, because you need to get your face in front of people. Bring yourself, and your work, to the places where you think they'll love you. Then shake every hand (no matter what's on it, that's what Purell is for) and smile at everyone. Tell them how much you love your work, even if (secretly) you really don't. Just because you don't like it doesn't mean it's not good. I personally dislike my first work (not so secretly anymore) because I know how much better it could have been if I had just... done something else. F***, I don't know what it is but something.
I'm hoping at this point you've recognized that I'm not with all of my senses. No I'm not. I'm celebrating god F***ing damn it. Sway's Demise (my new love) is finished, and I'm celebrating the fact that I'm in love with it. While I write to you about how stuff didn't go as awesome as I'd planned for launch, but found out I have many friends that love me dearly.
TL;DR To summarize this point, if you can't spend copious amounts of facetime with potential readers, spend copious amounts of money acquiring them. If you do neither, you better have 5,000 friends to share your sh*t, or you're f***ed.
Not sure why I'm bleeping my curse words, I forewarn everyone that this is an adult-ish blog.... F*** it.
Eye contact and smiles
It may feel scary, and strange, but when at the booth/event, make eye contact with everyone, and smile kindly. Don't stretch the smile... that's Joker status. Just smile a little bit, look into their soul, and drag them into your hell.
Eye contact is uncomfortable for most, but when you smile genuinely, it's attractive. I, myself, have been drawn into booths by both males and females taking the time to look at me and smile. It means you care. It means you give f**ks about that human, to take the time to look at them. They'll feel like you can see them.
Make all the smalltalk
I know it feels like you don't have time to communicate to every human that came to see you, but you're there for however the F*** long it takes to sell out, right? So you have time. I know you want to make sure that everyone else gets in and out in a timely manner, so identify those people, sign their sh*t, and get them the F*** out. They're not here to talk to you anyway, so GTFO.
You make your first sales. I mean that like you make your first sales. People aren't going to be interested in your work, they're interested in you. Same reason why when you have a booth (if you're a dude, or not between the ages of 18-25) buy girls between the ages of 18-25 to sell your stuff. I have in good confidence from someone waaaaaaaay more successful than me that if you have young, attractive females run your booth/event, you'll have double or triple sales.
Trust the well respected author who knows way more, and has sold way more books than me.
Bars aren't really the place
The "bar" I selected (a tap house and brewery) was filled with my demographic... and not. I was targeting: Female, 16-28, interested in horror & fantasy. But the other 9/10ths of the bar was either men (3/4ths) or women outside of the demographic (1/6th) WOOO I CAN MATHS! There were a few other reasons that it didn't go fantastic for me.
What did go fantastic for me?
My friends and family love me. Apparently, I'm doing something right, because at least 35 people I knew showed up to support me. <3
I've gotta say, I've never been so honored in my life. Unbelievable feeling to know that people I know, even people who hardly read, were coming and buying my book.
Also, beer is yummy, so I had a pretty good time having drinks bought for me.
Well... That's about all I have to teach kiddies. Did I make any points? I'm not sure now. I could proofread, buuuuut I'm not going to. Yep.... night kiddies! ^_^