Whether you are traditionally published or independently published, in this day and age, you have to be able to sell your book. Gone are the days of the publishing house getting the word out for you and setting everything up. It’s up to you to get the word out about your book and entice readers to buy it.
But how do you tell people about your book? You wrote it, isn’t that enough?
You cannot just upload your book and make a Facebook post about it being published and sell a thousand copies just like that. That is unless you’re someone like Stephanie Meyers or James Patterson, but they are famous authors. No, you have to figure out how to let people know that Suzy Nobody over here wrote a fantastic book, and they need to read it.
It doesn’t matter how great your book is if no one is reading it.
For those going the traditional route, you need to show the publishing company that you will make good on their investment. They need to know that you have initiative and a solid plan for getting your book into the hands of your readers.
We’ll start with strategies that you can accomplish from behind your computer screen, because if you’re like me, public speaking scares you.
At Home Strategies:
- A blog tour. Go to your friends’ blogs and find out which of them host authors on their blog site. Make sure you fit in the genre(s) they promote. Then, email them and ask if they have an opening (the week of your book release). If they do, ask if they’ll host you on their blog. Now, do this over and over until you have a solid list of blogs to post to for the week before your release, the week of your release, and the week following your release.
- A Facebook Launch Party. These are becoming more and more popular with Facebook live and people connecting more through the Internet. So, grab some of those giveaways you’ve planned to have and invite people for a book launch party. Make sure to entice their attendance by teasing them with the giveaways. Maybe you even have a few authors jump in and promote their book through your giveaways. Win Win. Giveaway ideas: Amazon cards, Starbucks cards, books, reader’s basket of goodies, a few free copies of your release book.
- Your Website: Teasing readers with Character Interviews, giveaways, and even unlocking the first chapter of your book before release is a great way to boost your website attendance and get the word out about your book. Remember, all promotion you do out there in the world should lead your readers to your website. Have a goal of newsletter sign ups or Facebook shares about your book release, and then promise them that once you reach that goal, you’ll unlock chapter two of your book. This way, you get those numbers so more people are aware of your book’s release, and they’re getting teased by the chapter release. And let’s face it, after reading two chapters of your book a few of them will go out and buy your book to find out what happens.
There are many more ideas for online presence, but let’s look at other ways you can promote your book’s release outside of your office.
- Book signings. You can schedule these at your local libraries and bookstores. Get the word out online, and then show up ready to be charismatic. You may get a lot of people or only a handful, but the more you get your name out there and show them you’re a serious author, the more books you’ll sell.
- Schedule time to attend conferences and sell your book at the bookstore. Writers love reading other writers’ books. We want to support our fellow authors, so we’ll spend the extra money to buy the books at conference. The more exposure you get in the industry the better.
- Radio interviews or television interviews. Find your local radio station and see if they will host you on their morning show. Your local news station too. They are always interested in local stories that lift the heart.
There are many other ways to get your book into the hands of your readers, but these are the top six that I plan on using. If you have a strategy that you think is awesome, and I haven’t mentioned it here, drop it in the comments. Let’s work to help each other out.
Next week we’ll talk about your biographical sketch for the proposal.