When I first heard of a Street Team, I pictured a dance crew krumping in an alley wearing baggy jeans and high top sneakers. I realize now that Street Teams don't dance. I still picture them with high top sneakers.
Who makes up a street team? Maybe your friends and family, but hopefully, it includes people you don't know since they will have different contacts than you.
How do you get a street team? Ready for this earth shattering news? You ask people to be a part of it. Ask you friends and family to ask people they know to join. Send out an invitation via your most comfortable social media outlets. In short, you ask.
How can a street team help me? Lots of ways. Here is a short list of things you can ask your street team to do. This is in no way comprehensive.
1. Write a review for their local paper/school.
2. Ask local book stores if they will be carrying your book.
3. Ask the local library/school library to carry your book.
4. Drum up attendance if you are at an event in their area or push readers toward your blog tour.
5. Tell their friends about your book.
What should I do for my street team? Above all else, thank them. After all, they are going to possibly do a lot of work for you that in no way benefits them. Lots and lots of thank yous are in order. Also, make sure that each of them has at least a digital copy of your book. They can't be ambassadors of your work if they've never read it. Last, ask them how they'd like to be thanked. Do they want swag or would they rather have a signed copy. Maybe they'd like to have a virtual author chat for a group they are apart of. Ask them, and then respond. It might not always be possible to meet their requests, but try as hard as you can.
A Street Team can help you spread the word and pick up the pieces of little things that easily fall through the cracks as your release gets closer. Having a team of fan volunteers can be invaluable.
For more information, check out this great post from Pen and Muse.
For today's task, start the process of recruiting your street team. Ask your friends and online buddies to help you spread the word and put together an introductory email thanking your new team for all the work they are about to do.