10 Tips for a Successful Book Launch

Launching a book for the first time is probably the most exciting event for any author. It is the celebration and culmination of all your hard work.

For an author it is a validation of self, a recognition of talent, an acceptance of what can be achieved if one persists and dedicates the required time and effort.

It’s a time where you gather all your family, friends and everyone you know to support you in sharing one of the happiest times in your life.

Many writers and artists talk about imposter syndrome. It’s a very common experience for many. Why is it hard to accept we are capable of success or greatness? Some say it’s because of our childhood where we were not encouraged to self-promote. As children we were encouraged to practice humility when accepting praise and to deflect compliments when they were given.

Perhaps it’s a legacy of our religious beliefs with concepts of original sin – having to prove that we are worthy. According to the Dalai Lama, we are born pure and whole and should not have to prove otherwise. He said he assumed that everyone loved themselves.  Why would they not?

But back to the Book Launch. How does one start to organize such a momentous event? Here are a few tips:

  1. Send out invitations well in advance.  Set up an event on your FB page. Keep reminding people closer to the event. You can schedule a future date and time when you want these reminders to appear.
  2. Decide on a theme or visual brand that will help people associate with the upcoming event. Post photos of friends and family posing with your book. Make it fun and use high-speed videos of people unpacking the book preparing for the launch.
  3. Decide on a venue that will enhance your theme and cater for the number of people you expect to attend.  Choose a venue with a bar if you want a relaxed atmosphere. Have food that matches your theme. Choose easy serve options if you are catering yourself.
  4. Decorate the tables and room with flowers in the colours that match the book.  Have a slide show of photos which enhance the book and the story’s atmosphere.
  5. Choose those with a vested interest in your book to give speeches on the day but keep them short.
  6. It saves time to pre-sign your books. Add any personalised messages on the day.
  7. Use a Square card reader for people to make credit card payments. Make sure you have phone chargers and power cords at hand. Have cash available for change.
  8. Get friends to assist with purchases at the signing table (in case it gets busy). Keep a sheet for people to write their email addresses. You can keep in touch with those who attended and send them a copy of your newsletter.
  9. Arrange for someone to take photos of your event.  You can look back and remember all the wonderful people who attended and supported you on your special day. 
  10. Most importantly, enjoy every minute. You deserve it.

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