What Do You Think About Giveaways?

No, it’s not Christmas in July, or June for that matter. I’ve simply got a snarly ball of thought wadded up
in a corner of my brain, kind of like the horking gob of Christmas lights when
you pull ’em out of storage. Let’s unravel it and see what we find. I apologize
in advance if it happens to be mouse droppings.
All the trendy kids are doing giveaways lately.
Even my editor asked if I wanted to do one. Of course I said yes. If my
publisher wanted me to ride a pony backwards through Times Square in a bikini,
I would (sorry for the visual). But honestly, I’m not super convinced giveaways
are effective. Oh, they’re fun and sparkle like disco balls, but how much bang
for the buck does an author really get?
That’s assuming, of course, that the giveaway is
of value. No one really wants to win my grandmother’s dentures, even if they
are signed by Johnny Depp. So…
What constitutes a valuable
giveaway?
Recently I won a Nook from a blog giveaway.
Wowzer. Value city, dude! I certainly struck the jackpot. But not everyone can
afford to deal out electronics like candy. In researching the giveaway trend, I
came across some basics that should go into choosing a geegaw to award a lucky
winner:
  • Branding (item should reinforce
    the author’s niche)
  • Worth (don’t stick the recipient
    with something stupid you pulled out of a junk drawer)
  • Unique (in a positive
    way…something they’re excited to tell others about)
  • Memorable (long lasting &
    durable to remind recipient of you/your books)

Do giveaways sell more
books?
From what I’ve read, the answer is no. So why do
a freakin’ giveaway in the first place? Because it’s a way to get your name out
there in the public realm, more so than if you don’t do a giveaway. And if your name is seen on Twitter, Facebook,
the inscription on the cover of your book sitting on somebody’s coffee table
who won it, the more chances a victim person will eventually
want to find out what the hype is about and they’ll finally buy a book. It’s
not necessarily the giveaway in and of itself that will sell you, but the
cumulative name recognition.
Convinced? Apparently I am, because I’m doing a
giveaway this week over at Writer
Off the Leash
. Stop by and give it a whirl. You just might win!


Michelle Griep’s been writing since she first discovered blank wall space and Crayolas…professionally, however, for the past 10 years. Her latest release, A HEART DECEIVED, is available by David C. Cook. You can find her at: