How to Write and Publish Your Book #12
Book Marketing Part 1
This is the big one: the one question all self-published authors want to know the answer to: 'How do I market my book?'
We've broken this marketing report into five sections, and will discuss the following topics over the next few weeks:
#1. Book Marketing: Beware the shark infested waters.
#2. Do you need a website?
#3. Blogging, writing articles, forums and book reviews.
#4. Using Social Media Networks to market your book.
#5. Building your brand.
As a self-published author and director of Publicious, I am constantly searching for that magic-bullet that will not only fire my books to success, but also those of my clients. In my early days, as a novice self-publisher, I was tempted by companies who offered 'marketing packages' and 'guarantees' that my book would be stocked in bookstores worldwide at wallet-deflating prices. (You may have seen these businesses on the net.) My advice about such companies is to be very cautious. In my opinion, and that of just about every other experienced self-published author I have ever met, it's best to stay clear of them.
But how will you recognise those publishing sharks? Pretty easy: they are the ones telling you how good they are, and how great your publishing experience will be if you choose them. ('Everything that shines isn't gold' is a cliché for a reason, right?)
So when you do your research on marketing companies and publishing providers, avoid the ones that make these claims:
- Your book will be a best seller.
- Your book will be available in all the high street bookstores.
- They offer to write and send out press releases. A poorly written press release can actually do you, and your book, more harm than good. Any releases that might be written are usually sent to generic email lists, along with thousands of other similar ones. They end up in spam filters. (And you're paying for the privilege!)
- They try to charge you a large sum of money to display your book at one of the international book fairs. Book fairs are primarily a marketing venue for larger publishing houses, so they can display their wares and negotiate international rights. Your book will be sit on the shelf of a cheesy little stand, inside a huge hall, with hundreds of bigger and better stands displaying thousands of books. It's unlikely it will even be seen. If you have been considering this as an option - don't!
- They make ridiculous promises. Stand by the old adage: If it seems too good to be true. . . (You'll know a ridiculous promise when you hear one!)
If you have a marketing budget, but not the time, you can engage a marketing company to handle everything for you. Again, this is a business decision, so do your research before taking the plunge. Make sure you understand what services the company will provide and that their experience extends to marketing books. Many marketing firms can tailor a campaign to your budget, but may require you to commit to a minimum campaign time frame, such as 3 months.
Marketing options can also include radio and TV appearances, but be aware that these types of avenues do not come cheap, and though they seem powerful, may not be the best approach for your circumstances. However, if you know somebody in the business, or you are a determined soul, you can get this kind of exposure for free. Potentially, this could be a gold mine. Local radio stations would be the best place to start.
What can I do on my own to market my book?
Take heart - there's never been a better time for self-published authors to promote their books! In most instances, it can be done absolutely free. You may even find the task enjoyable - working with creative self-marketing options can be exciting!
Join me next time for Book Marketing #2, where we answer the burning question: 'Do I need a website?'
See you next time.
Write on Andy
|Tags:Andy McDermott / Director