Interview: Sally Collings Talks Book Marketing with TheBookDesigner

by | Apr 21, 2011

Today I’m very excited to have my very first video interview for you with Australian author and publisher Sally Collings. Readers may remember the article she wrote here in June of last year to talk about developments in indie publishing in Australia, and about her company, Red Hill Publishing.

Now Sally, the author of four books with HarperCollins, returns on the tour with her new book, Parenting with Soul. I took the opportunity to talk to Sally at her office in Brisbane, Queensland, Australia.

Here are some of the topics covered in this video:

    sally collings, red hill publishing, self-publishing

  • How she came up with the idea of a “V-tour” encompassing social media promotions using blogs, Twitter, Facebook, interviews and more
  • How she timed the promotion for the book and the V-tour
  • The way Sally planned her promotion starting a year before the publication date
  • What it’s like interfacing with a publisher like HarperCollins
  • Why Sally chose not to publish the book herself
  • What all authors should be doing to market their books, no matter who publishes it
  • Why Sally prefers giving talks to doing bookstore signings
  • Changes in media promotion that work in the favor of writers
  • How to find the best sites for your online promotion
  • The key distinction to make in approaching online media
  • How Sally sells without selling
  • Why it’s so important for authors to work on building an author platform
  • The importance of creating a marketing plan around your key message and the activities you do well

Note: This is the first video interview I’ve ever done, and it’s not perfect. Shot over Skype, there was a technical problem [i.e. “operator error”] that resulted in a couple of glitches during the first two and a half minutes. Happily, I don’t think they’ll interfere with your enjoyment.

You can find out more about Sally at her author website,
Red Hill Publishing website
Parenting with Soul website
Parenting with Soul in the Kindle Store

tbd advanced publishing starter kit


  1. Gregory C. Randall

    Thanks for the great video and the insider information. Couple of things re the the video – you need to have the interviewee look at the camera on their computer or where it is set up more often, they are talking to us, not to the Skype screen, a gentle reminder at the beginning helps. Beside it will show them in a better light. Also watch the backgrounds sometime they can be interesting but if too much stuff (and God knows my office looks like a tornado just blew through) it can be distracting.
    Sally was great and I look forward to more of your interviews.
    Thanks Joel

  2. Stacey Purcell

    I enjoyed the video very much and learned a few things to boot! Thanks for posting an interview in video form, it was refreshing and different from reading yet another article.
    I’m fascinated with the amount of work she did on her own to market her book. It leads me back to the question that if an author is putting forth so much effort and doing the same job for the publisher as well, then why do we need publishers?
    One answer would be to use the traditional publishing route as a marketing tool for future works that you publish on your own. Now isn’t that a turn around?

    • Joel Friedlander

      You do have a point, Stacey, but two things a traditional publisher can give an author are wide distribution and preferred access to media outlets. Both of these are very difficult for self-publishers.

  3. Diana Young

    Having a video is very cool, but I found it very distracting that the column of ads along the right edge covered half of your guest’s image no matter how wide I made my screen. Hopefully you can do something to prevent that.

    • Joel Friedlander

      Hi Diana,

      When I press the “play” button on the video embedded in the blog post, I only get the video, no ads. So I assume you are watching it on the Vimeo (hosting) site, over which I have no control.

      All this video stuff is a little new for me, so if I’ve misunderstood, please let me know, thanks.


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