It is an amazing accomplishment to write a book. It is even a greater achievement to navigate the stormy seas of publishing and reach the shore with your finished product. If you chose to publish as an independent author, or if you chose to contract with a non-mainstream publishing house, then it is more than likely up to you to market your book. The obvious question is, “where do I start?”
Here are a few ideas:
I can't say enough about the importance of the internet and social media marketing. In today’s world, social media is one of the most important tools for success. Other than the author, that is. The most powerful marketing tool is the author. I'll address that later in this blog. Here are some internet marketing ideas:
- Get a website and start blogging. If you are a do-it-yourselfer, there are many tools out there to help you do this. If not, email me and I will be happy to provide you with the name of a great web development guy who gears websites for authors.
- Get a good social media strategy. This means being active on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and other social media outlets. If you have it in your budget, you can hire a social media manager. Social media is a complex field and an expert can help you navigate the social media world. Since these managers can expensive, you might want to consider doing it yourself. It takes a couple of hours a day, sometimes more. I have found that no matter how good a social media manager is, they cannot personalize my marketing like I can. I use Sprout Social which has helped me get the word out and is streamlined so I don't spend all of my time posting to different sights.
- Sign up with Author Central at Amazon.com. There you can list your books, post reviews, and obtain many other tools for marketing your book. This is a free service. Go to https://authorcentral.amazon.com/, create an account, and you are on the way to marketing your book to those who want to read it.
- Set up book signings: if you aren't able to sign at Barnes and Noble or other large retailers, you can contact independent booksellers in your area and arrange signings directly. To do this, your book needs to be on the Indie Bound website. Many independent bookstores are members of this organization and will not consider a signing unless your book is on this site. The website address is http://www.indiebound.org/.
- Attend arts and crafts fairs or flea markets: for a nominal fee you can rent a table and hold a signing. These are especially lucrative during the Christmas season but are still a great option at any time of year. People love to talk to authors and, in my personal experience, they really find it special to have a signed copy of a book. To find these venues in your area, just check your local newspaper for events. Usually, contact information for the fair is provided.
- Always carry a copy of your book with you. Sales happen at the most unexpected times. I never know when I'm going to meet my next reader. I've met them while buying a house, traveling in the RV, and even at a doctor’s appointment.
I hope some of these ideas will help get your story into the hands of many readers. Let me know if you find success with any of these ideas.
Until next time…….