Indie authors often spend more time publishing their book than they do promoting it. But if you want to sell copies to more than just family and friends, you must rely on others to spread the word. One of the easiest – and cheapest – ways to do that is by creating a media kit.
So why do you need a media kit??
Companies create media kits all the time when launching new products. They’re designed for reporters who want a quick snapshot of the product and why they should cover it. In the publishing industry, media kits help bloggers, reviewers, reporters, and editors understand how your story stands out from the crowd. Hundreds of thousands of books are published each year, so you need a kit that quickly explains about who you are, what your story is about, and why someone should care.
What goes into a media kit?
- Your bio – Write a short bio that focuses on your writing background, along with any awards you’ve won or research you’ve conducted.
- Your story – Like a query letter, this section should only center on your main character and conflict.
- Your accolades – As you start pitching your book and receiving rave reviews, promote the best quotes here.
- Your specs – In the corporate world, this section would include the detailed product specs (i.e. title, genre, publication date, ISBN, retail price, etc.)
How to use your media kit:
Once you’ve created your kit, upload all the content to a digital platform like Box, Dropbox, or Google Drive, and then link to it from your author website. This ensures people can access your files in one central location that you own and can update on a regular basis.
Now let’s talk about pitching. Just like agents, media want you to tailor your pit to them. That means you need to spend the same amount of time researching a reporter or blogger as you would an agent, making sure they’re the best fit for your book.
Media get inundated with press releases that often end up in their spam or deleted folder, so create a short, simple, and personalized email pitch instead that explains who you are, what your story is about, and why they should care. After that – THANK THEM for their time and point them to your digital kit on your author website.
Just like with pitching agents, it will probably take some time before you hear back from any media contact, but don’t give up. If only one bites, you will succeed.