A unique blog dedicated to covering the worlds of book publishing and the news media, revealing creative ideas, practical strategies, interesting stories, and provocative opinions. Along the way, discover savvy but entertaining insights on book marketing, public relations, branding, and advertising from a veteran of two decades in the industry of book publishing publicity and marketing.
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Thursday, April 28, 2016
Trade, Pay, Act & Network: 4 Ways to Market Your Book
always telling authors, whether they are first-time novices or veterans of
multiple best-selling books, the key to success is to go all-out on book
marketing and publicity. That is
actually more important than making a book great. A mediocre book with great PR often does
better than a superior book with little or no marketing behind it.
doesn’t matter what genre you write in.
It doesn’t matter if your publisher is big, small, a university press or an independent. It doesn’t matter what your
book is about, how it’s written or designed, or how catchy your title and cover
appears to be. You have to promote and
market the heck out of it.
some authors lack the key elements to promote:
They don’t know what to do, when, or how.
·Ability;: They lack certain skills needed to sell
·Time: Everyone is short on this.
·Money: You need it if you want a professional helper.
You don’t want to talk about yourself or book.
Make-up: You fear public speaking or desire
·Attitude: You think you shouldn’t have to blow your own
horn, that the book sells itself.
how do you get some marketing success when you lack one or more of the above?
either do what you can and supplement the rest, or you outsource everything, or
you do nothing and pray that you get discovered.
you recognize that you need help, you have a few options:
for professional services.
less for amateur services.
your services/resources with others.
with your network for help.
funds and resources.
an investor or sponsor to fund your efforts.
Kickstarter and other crowdfunding sites.
what can authors do to make sure they have exhausted all possible avenues for
success? They must act with a sense of
urgency and assume a mindset of desperation.
They can’t have a wait-and-see attitude.
They can’t be laid back in their approach. They can’t just hope to win the lottery or be
dependent on the kindness of strangers.
Nor can they risk debt or bankruptcy to take a dream and turn it into
you do what you are capable of and what you enjoy doing. I don’t mean writing. I’m talking about the specter of book
marketing and PR that you do well. Let’s
say you are good at research and emailing people, but not so good in
networking. Let’s say you are good at
getting speaking gigs but not at securing media coverage. Perhaps – you know how to get radio
interviews but social media baffles or even frustrates you. Know what you do well and identify what needs
to be outsourced. Accept the things that
you will ignore, that neither will you do yourself nor get others to do for
identify who can help you do the things you plan to outsource. Query them on capabilities, fees and past
performance. Find people you can work
with. You likely will need multiple
experts to help you if you have numerous areas that you require help in. There are no one-stop-shopping pros in the
figure out how to work your network, as well as build it up. What will you ask of them – and give in
return? How will you reach the networks
of your network?
think of how to trade with people who can help you. I don’t mean paying your web guy with books
or compensating someone with sexual favors, but what you can and should do is
think of what it is that you have digitally that is perceived to be of value of
others. Incentivize others to buy your
book not only because it’s a great book at a great discount – or because they
are your friend or colleague – but because by doing so they will be rewarded
with a free item. It can be a prior
ebook. It can be a webinar. It could be copies of presentations, missing
chapters, or a resource guide. It can be
something that belongs to someone else.
Share the digital resources of fellow authors – not only does it help
you sell your book but the authors that you help promote will be willing to
share your stuff with their list of connections. It’s a win-win.
you need to simply take the extra step or do the thing you didn’t think you
were capable of doing. To break through
you need to do more than you think possible and to try things you never
did. That’s how you get moving from
point A to point C: pay others, trade with others, exploit
your networks, and do work on your own.