Tuesday, July 6, 2010

No, I Haven't Fallen Off the Face of the Earth

...though the irregularity of my posts must make it seem that way. The reality is that there are a lot of activities going on related to the book's October release. Among them:

Develop a social media marketing plan: I'm going to need some help here, though I think I've come up with a strategy for using Twitter. It'll take me a long time to set up, but if it works the way I think/hope it does, it should be effective. I'll learn more next week when I go to a Social Media Marketing Workshop. If you want to follow my tweets (and give me your feedback on my strategy), my address is: @xsnerg (there's a link on the blog). If you read a Tweet you like, please forward it to your friends; it takes a lot of forwards to make anything, such as a Tweet, go viral).

By the way, I asked my musician son if he uses Twitter. He replied that, "Twitter is for middle-aged people who think that's what kids do." There's some truth in that...

Social media marketing also means setting up a website, which is in progress. For those of you who have regularly been following my blog, some of the information on the website will be repetitive, but there will also be new components, including an animated map of my grandfather's travels. Last week, I spent time in the UCSD Map Library, trying to figure out where the labor camp that my grandfather escaped from was located: I know it was a five-day walk from Chelyabinsk, which is in Western Siberia, and that he rowed across a lake that was a mile wide somewhere along that route. Unfortunately, Google Earth doesn't have the tools to help me look at the landscape within a 100-mile radius, which is what I figured he and his partner would have covered in five days' time; that feature is only on Google Earth Pro, which costs $400. Which is why I went to the map library. I found the call number of the specific map I wanted to examine but it was missing. Contacting the main reference librarian in the map room to see if he can locate it; he was on vacation when I was in the library last week.

The website will also have a video of my presentation to the Jewish Book Council, which will be part of my online press kit, and the Book Trailer I'm currently writing (think movie trailer, but without the budget). (I asked the same son if he could compose something for the book trailer -- I'm talking less than a minute of music -- but he said he needed 6 months' notice... Well, he is busy. But he recommended several websites from which I can download music free, or 'free' after paying a single licensing fee). If I can finish my part of it by the time he returns home from his West Coast tour, I may ask, again. There will also be an area where readers can write in with comments on the book.

I'm also looking for a publicist, 75% of the need is because I don't have time to do everything that needs to be done, and 25% because there are probably things that I haven't thought of (for example, what the heck is Cloud Management?), or for which I don't have the connections.

If anyone has additional suggestions on what I can do to increase the visibility of my book before its October release, I'd love to hear from you.

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