Many aspiring authors choose the path of self-publishing. According to Thorpe-Bowker, the independent publishing industry grew by 40% in just one year. Self-publishing gives you freedom and control over the entire writing process. However, it also leaves you with the task of marketing your book on your own. Here are a few pro-tips on how to use various channels to promote your book.
Having your own website can help you get in touch with your readers before you publish your book. In fact, I would advise you to start working on your website as a side gig before finishing writing your book.
You don’t need a developer to make a website. Just search for “Wix vs Wordpress vs Squarespace vs Weebly” articles and decide which solution is best for you.
Once your website is up, you should start posting articles that will appeal to your target readers. For example, if your book is on parenting you can cover topics from baby product reviews to the latest trends in child development. You can also offer your own insights and review other books in your field. Your website will help readers discover you. It will also serve readers that already know about you, and want to hear more of what you have to say.
Having a website will also allow you to link to it (instead of Amazon) when you share links to your book, publish press releases and do giveaways. Eventually, you can even sell your book directly off your website.
When it comes to exposure, Facebook and Twitter are a must. Chances are you’re already there. If you haven’t set up an author’s page on Facebook already, now’s the time.
Stalk other successful authors in your genre and see what they’re up to. What do they post? How do readers react? How do they interact with their readers? The point is to familiarize yourself with what works and what readers in your field like to share, then recreate the experience yourself.
You should start this process as early as possible because it takes time and lots of patience
You can increase your exposure by increasing your online presence in general. The key here is to have potential readers see your name on as many platforms as possible. You can seek out websites and blogs with high traffic that allow guest posting. Offer them to write an article that would interest their audience. Here is a good article I found on guest posting. You can also seek out forums or discussion boards where your target readers hang out. Don’t forget to plug your book in your signature.
If you are willing to learn the ropes, you should also consider writing for Medium. Medium will publish every article you submit to them, but they will curate only the best articles. If your article gets curated, you will reach many readers who may be interested in your book. Here is the best article I have found on getting your article curated.
No matter what niche you are writing about, there are probably events and conferences where many of you target readers gather to discuss topics closely related to the content you provide. Seek out such events and try to attend as many as possible.
Old fashioned word of mouth goes a long way in the writing business. You will need to have some business cards with your website on it. You can even give away some free books or samples and gain some reviewers with printable download codes through Bookfunnel.
A fast way to get reviews is by directly approaching reviewers with a free copy and a simple request for them to check out your book. There are a bunch of book review bloggers with high traffic that accept indie books, like Chocolate Pages, Short Book and Scribes, and Amy's Bookshelf.
Aside from one-time professional reviews, you also need reader reviews on Amazon and Goodreads. Some author support services make it easier for you to reach readers through magnets, developing your newsletters, and improving your website. They include our own website, Fiveabook and Story Origin.
There’s a reason the largest brands in the world are always asking for your email, it’s the same reason (unfortunately) spammers bombard you with tons of emails each day, and that reason is that it simply works.
All your marketing efforts should in the end lead the readers to your mailing list. Whether it’s through social media, your website, or book sales. You can opt in readers to subscribe to a newsletter of your latest articles, gifts, and promotions. Offering something exclusive to your subscribers, that passing by visitors don’t have access to, is a good place to start.
There are thousands of podcasts available online with millions of daily listeners worldwide. They can be a great platform to present your book to new readers. However, due to their increase in popularity it can be extremely difficult to secure an interview.
You should keep interviews in mind before you launch your book and pitch to show hosts a few weeks (if not months) in advance. This way you give them time to integrate you and your book topic while creating the episode.
Search for podcasts that coincide with your target readers. The more similar the content of the show is to your book, the more likely they are to buy it after the episode.
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