Today’s guest blogger is author Karin Tabke, who answers a WU Burning Question:
What exactly is a Street Team and how does an author benefit from it?
Thanks so much for being here, Karin. Take it away…
Thank you, Writer Unboxed, for having me back!
Okay, so, I’ll try to answer as best as I can, and you’ll have to bear with me because I’m a newbie when it come to this really awesome concept (and for the record, I didn’t do the leg or brain work in putting my Street Team agenda together, my very capable friend Edie Ramer mentioned the concept to me, as she knows of several authors who have prolific street teams, and well, she ran with it. Thanks, Edie!!).
So by definition a Street Team is a group of fans who canvas/haunt/stalk places and promote you. For writers that would be internet sites, blogs, book stores, cafes, libraries, and of course word of mouth. Basically your Street Team is creating buzz about your work. They can go armed with paraphernalia i.e. bookmarks, fliers, promo items like pens, magnets and key chains or just a smile and a recommendation. My understanding is this concept was first hatched by fans of rock and roll groups who wanted to spread the word. It is a grassroots type of operation. And in this business we know it’s all about the buzz.
Of course there has to be something in it for your Street Team. While they love you, they would like to see some love in return for talking you up. Signed books, monthly prize drawings and such go a long way.
How to build a Street Team you ask?
Ask your friends to begin with, but also put the request out to the universe i.e. up on your blog, Myspace, and website. Make the information clear, concise and accessible. Below is the email letter I recently sent out to a few of my friends, I’ll also be posting this on my blog, The Write Life, later this week, and there will also be a page or two on my website dedicated to this as well as a Street Team link on my home page. I’ll also have it up on my new MySpace. [Read more…]