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April 12, 2012

Get to Know: Tonya Kappes

Welcome, Tonya, to the PP!! and congratulations on The Tricked Out Toolbox.

We can't wait to get to know more.

Seriously, do you see those snuggy commercials?

As a matter of fact, someone gave me a snuggy as a joke for Christmas. . .and one size does not fit all. I began thinking about this concept and how it relates to marketing and promoting books.

I have heard that marketing and promoting is something very difficult to do. No matter what publication journey you are on, marketing and promoting is primarily up to you, the author. And I've got you covered! I’ve co-written a non-fiction book with author Melissa Bourbon Ramirez, The Tricked Out Toolbox~Promotional and Marketing Tools Every Writer Needs, (TOT) that will be available as a second edition in less than a month.

My vision for the book was to look like one of the Dummie's guides, chalked full of ideas, tried and true tools that worked for other authors, and testimonies from them. I am published with over 32,000 ebook sales in under six months, so I'd like to think I know a little something about marketing and promoting.

The first thing about marketing and promoting that you need to figure out is your PR PERSONALITY!

You do have a PR personality. Believe it or not.

Me....I'm very outgoing. I love being with other writers, readers, and just about anyone. This makes me an extrovert personality, which is an outgoing overtly expressive person! Me?!!! OVERTLY EXPRESSIVE???!!!!!

The other side of this personality is introvert. Which by MR. WEBSTER means a shy, reticent, and typically self-centered person.

In TOT, this is the first thing you should recognize before you can create your marketing and promo plan. After all, you do need a plan. You are your marketing and promoting department.
You need to know what marketing and promotion personality you have before you can start developing your plans. Why? Because your personality will drive the direction of your marketing and promotion efforts. It’s all about knowing your strengths and weaknesses…and working toward the former.

Personality Quiz:

Take this quick quiz to identify your personality strengths.
1.Do you consider yourself a people person with a lot of friends?
a.❏ Totally. The better question would be…who ISN’T my friend?
b.❏ Not really. I have a few friends, but I usually only talk to them one at a time.

2.Do you consider yourself an…
a.❏ extrovert.
b.❏ introvert.

3.What room in your house do you like to spend more time?
a.❏ I love spending time in my bedroom because it’s my space and it’s quiet.
b.❏ In the living room, of course, because that’s where the action is.

4.Are you loud or quiet?
a.❏ Totally loud, baby!
b.❏ Definitely more quiet.

5.You’ve had a long day. To wind down, you prefer to:
a.❏ hang around at home, listen to music, and just have quiet time.
b.❏ get my peeps and hit the town.

6.How does the idea of talking to readers at a book signing make you feel?
a.❏ Scared out of my mind.
b.❏ Excited! Can’t wait to get around all those people.

7.There’s a conference coming up and they need speakers. What do you do?
a.❏ Dodge the incoming phone calls from the conference coordinator.
b.❏ Jump at the chance. Who cares if I have nothing to say? I can bluff my way through.

8.In school, there were collaborative learning groups. How did you feel about them?
a.❏ I would much rather work on my own.
b.❏ Groups are AWESOME!

9.Your local writing chapter has board positions to fill. What do you do?
a.❏ Decline the offer. I don’t like speaking in front of groups.
b.❏ Jump in and volunteer to be president.

10.If you’re invited to join a critique group, what do you say?
a.❏ “I’d rather just critique one on one.”
b.❏ “I’d love to. How many pages can I bring?”

So how’d you score?

More As than Bs? You’re in introvert.
More Bs than As? Extrovert alert!

File this away as you pick tools to stuff in your toolbox. You don’t want to set yourself up for failure by choosing tools you won’t be comfortable using.

What are some of the marketing and promoting tools for each personality? Let's look at a few:

• book signings
• conferences
• teaching in person classes
• join local writers groups/critique group(WLC)
• social networking
• Kindle boards


• blogging
• teaching on line classes (savvy author)
• join writing groups on line
• social networking
• holding contests
• Kindle boards

These are just a few suggestions to get you thinking about things you like to do and don't like to do. This is your career. Pick things that you like to do, not the things you think you should do. If you do what you like, your success will follow.

Maybe you like to do something that are a mix of both personalities. That would be the perfect blend. But most of us are one or the other.

Which one are you? What are some things you like to do or think you'll like to do to promote your book?

Next week we are going to talk about when you need to start marketing and promoting your career.

Tonya’s Links:

Barnes and Noble:


Pj Schott said...

The Tricked-Out Toolbox was my first Tonya Kappes book. I now have the latest edition. And all her other books as well. Terrific stuff!!

Tonya Kappes said...

Thanks, PJ! I really love this book. It helped me propel my novels on Amazon's Movers and Shakers FIVE times. It's also about being a kind, pay it forward writer. Learning your PR personality helps you figure out how to help the writing community and get your career on a level you dream of.

Dave said...

Hi Tonya, I clicked the link to your Tricked OUt Toolbox but it didn't bring me to a shopping cart or Amazon page so I will go looking for it. in the meantime, while I am here I thought I'd mention your site looks pretty cool and I like that pick with the city in the background...

Looking forward to more of your updates!

Sylvia said...

Hi Tanya,
Welcome to PP. I have your book and I'm going to go out and see what else you have on Amazon. I'm an extrovert but I hate marketing my novels, but i really like sales. What is the number one thing you would recommend an Indie author do to improve her sales?


Vicki Batman, sassy writer said...

Hi, Tonya: I can't wait to get your book and improve my marketing. I do FB, groups of all kinds, Tweet, speak, blog, host other bloggers, write articles. I would love for my numbers to grow more. Your book will certainly help. Thank you.

Vicki Batman, sassy writer said...

Hi, Tonya: I can't wait to get your book and improve my marketing. I do FB, groups of all kinds, Tweet, speak, blog, host other bloggers, write articles. I would love for my numbers to grow more. Your book will certainly help. Thank you.

Unknown said...

What invaluable info you so generously shared Tonya! Thank you very much. Sounds like you have a solid grasp on the how- I just love when someone shares a direction for writers to aid in their success.

*sigh* visiting the Plotting Princesses always delivers a quality experience.

Patricia said...

Great tips and I'm happy you've given us a book to help us in promoting ourselves!

Liz Lipperman said...

First of all, welcome to PP, Tonya. The book sounds marvelous, especially to Indie authors, although in this day and age unless you are Patterson or Roberts, even traditionally published authors need to do their own marketing.

I will definitely check out the second edition. And I love the pay it forward attitude.

Liese said...

Looking forward to reading more

Karilyn Bentley said...

Hi Tonya & welcome to the PP! I'm definitely going to have to check out your book. I'm somewhat of an introvert & hate doing things that draw attention to myself. :) That attitude does not make for great sales! Looking forward to checking out your book!

Kathleen Baldwin said...

Great post Tonya! I started reading your Tricked-Out Toolbox. Lots of helpful information in it. Thanks!

Also, I think your novels have really fun covers.

So, following up on Sylvia's question, what is the one thing from your toolbox you think had the biggest impact on your sales?

Kathy Ivan said...

Hi Tonya and welcome to the Plotting Princesses blog. So glad you came by and shared some insight into things that will help us better publicize our work to the masses.

I am so much an introvert, it's really hard to go out there and sell "myself."

Any other tips that you can give us on increasing our sales without being to much "in your face with buy my book" mentality.

Thanks again.

Sasha Summers said...

I'm kind of a mash-up of both introvert and extrovery. I need to read your book to learn how to play up the both of my spilt (Gemini) personality - LOL!
Thanks for the quiz - very cool!

Tonya Kappes said...

Hi, Dave! I'm sorry the link was all wonky! But you can find it on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, or Smashwords! Let me know what you think!

Tonya Kappes said...

Hi, Dave! I'm sorry the link was all wonky! But you can find it on Amazon, Barnes and Noble, or Smashwords! Let me know what you think!

Tonya Kappes said...

Thanks for having me, Sylvia! I co-authored this book with a traditional author. When I came up with the idea, I thought it would be good to have all basis covered. But the single most important thing, I believe, it to pay it forward. Interact with other authors, go to their blogs and comment, have them at your blog, promo their work, show the world that you are a caring author.

Tonya Kappes said...

I love being here, Vicki!

Tonya Kappes said...

Karen, thank you so much. It's been a lot of trial and error. I give you all the marketing ways that will work for you. Every marketing and promoting tool really does start with knowing your PR personality. Good luck!

Tonya Kappes said...

Thanks for stopping by, Patricia! I love helping authors no matter what!

Tonya Kappes said...

Hi, Liz! The Tricked Out Toolbox is for both traditional and Indie. My co-author Melissa Bourbon/Misa Ramirez is a cozy mystery author that is published through NAL and Berkley. She is also the marketing director for Entangled Publishing and I knew I had to have her on board.

Tonya Kappes said...

Karilyn, there are so many other things you can do besides be present in FRONT of a lot of other people. You can host give-aways on your blog, do book clubs through the comfort of your own home using skype, or even google plus hangout. Some other great tools is making up some author swag (book marks,pens, etc.) and sending them to conferences for good bags. Have you ever checked out Lee Hyatt's site?

Tonya Kappes said...

Hi, Kathleen. I'm so glad you like it so far! And thank you so much for the compliment on my covers. I love them too:) Hmmm....I'm a big time extrovert and I've made a lot of connections through networking. Networking has been great for me. That's one way I got on the PP. When you have other authors on your side, marketing works best in numbers. So go out and create good karma around your name:) Don't expect others to be the same, but you will get it back ten fold.

jeff7salter said...

Tonya, I think somebody messed up your quiz --- in the last half of the questions, A would be the introvert and B would be the extrovert.
But I didn't need the quiz to peg myself. I've always been shy. I've been able to overcome that in order to make an impact with my job, and profession (as well as in school, church, etc.) but I'm a lot more comfortable just chilling ... without noise or commotion.
I like people, but only in small numbers. When I used to go to annual conferences, all the hustle-bustle would wear me out!

Sheila Seabrook said...

Tonya, I've been waiting for this second edition to be released. Can't wait to learn more!

Tonya Kappes said...

Hi, Kathy! In your face is definitely not a great way to go. Be sure to give back to the reader community. I have used Facebook a ton for getting to readers. I will post on the kindle or the nook page something like "the next five people that message me will receive a free copy of my book Carpe Bead 'em." Now you can gift your books no matter if you are traditionally published or not. It's going to cost you money, but it does get the attention of other readers. I see my sales rise every time.

Tonya Kappes said...

Oh Sasha! That's the best PR Personality. You have what it take to get it done!

Tonya Kappes said...

Jeff, if I had to guess, I'd say you are a mix of both. I've seen you in a social setting and you do just enough to get your name out there! Thanks for stopping by!

Tonya Kappes said...

Hi, Sheila! Thanks for stopping by!! I'm so glad you like The Tricked Out Toolbox! Let me know what works for you!