Opening up your conduits

This section is drawn from communications planning, and I’ve created a new term for this: conduits. How do you reach the people you need to reach?

Here’s a short list of basic conduits: web, in person, print, media, web2 (social networking sites). Can you think of others?

Have you got a clearly defined conduit for each of your audiences? For example, to connect with your fans in person, you may attend a comicon or do a library reading. To connect with publishers in person, attending a writer’s conference, industry to-dos, professional association events.

It’s important to think about whether a particular conduit will be seen by an unexpected audience. Take your website for example. Who in your audience may stop by? A publisher? An editor? A fan? Will your website present well to each of them? Be sure to keep this in mind.

Another thing to consider is whether you need unique conduits for a particular project. For example, do you want to start a blog for one of the characters in your book?

There are many conduits available for promoting you and your work, with new opportunities every day. When I started this project back in 2007, Twitter didn’t exist. Today, it can be used to position someone as an expert or draw and retain fans for a book series, plus it’s also used as a publishing platform, with novels released 140 characters at a time.

You won’t be able to do everything, so choose wisely. Over time, as you begin working within your plan, you’ll see what’s working and what’s not and can adjust accordingly.