Monday, July 26, 2021

How Should Authors Spend Their Book Marketing Dollars?


I can’t tell you how many authors that I talk to, on a near-daily basis, who tell me they’re done spending money – only to change their tune once they are enlightened on how to invest in their book marketing wisely. They simply lost faith after failure – or were not properly informed of their best options. They had lost faith. That is not what you want to have happen if you hope to get a message out, make an impact, sell books, and establish your author brand.


The solution is simple: Spend more money, but do it in a smarter way.


Authors misspend their money every day, just as consumers make poor buying decisions for other products, services or experiences.


How often do you have buyer’s remorse? How many times did a movie, restaurant, or a show not live up to its billing? How many people buy clothes that end up not feeling or looking the way they had hoped? How many electronic devices do you buy that have you second-guessed the decision six months later?


You get the point.


Book marketing consumerism requires some savvy, encouragement, and practice. At first, you don’t even know what you need or what it should cost to market a book. You experiment. Some things work, some don’t. Time and experiences start to shape your perspective. But what if you reach a point of failure or frustration and just give up? That would not help you and it would likely be unwarranted. Unless you are being told by numerous, reliable sources that your book sucks, do not give up on it. Underexposure and anonymity is not the same thing as rejection.


Okay, so let’s start from the beginning:


1.      Set a budget for book Marketing. Be prepared to stretch it, especially if you see results or have reason to believe your next endeavor is worthwhile.


2.      Diversify your expenditures. Some things you have to have, such as a web site, press kit, and paid book reviews. Other things are optional. Basically, you will need to outsource the things that you cannot do (lack the ability), don’t want to do (lack of desire), or have no time to do (your time is best spent on other priorities). But where you can use a skill set, connections, and gumption, see to doing all that you can do on your own.


3.      Pay for things you likely lack the knowledge, skills, experience, and connections in, such as the securing of news media interviews and coverage for your book.


4.      Pay for information and resources. Consultants who can show you how to effectively use social media, generate book sales, seek out speaking engagements, or win awards, are worth utilizing. They are teaching you the life skills that can be applied to promoting multiple books over time.


5.      Avoid spending money where the offer sounds too good to be true. Few things are guaranteed or happen as smoothly as we’d hoped for. Invest in probabilities, not just possibilities.


6.      If you spent money that didn’t yield a pay-off, figure out:


·         Was it the vendor that stunk?

·         Is the book the problem?

·         Was it just bad luck or poor timing?


Once you know why something didn’t work, examine if, under different circumstances, better results will be yielded from trying it again. Or, determine to move on, and try other areas to see if they work any better.


7.      Do not borrow, steal, or cheat to pay for your book marketing. Do not mortgage the house, stop health insurance payments, or decide your car doesn’t really need maintenance. But do be prepared to spend money to make money and invest in the long-term.


8.      Understand what you could spend money on and then investigate what the most economical way would be. Authors can pay for:


·         Consulting on marketing or public relations

·         Someone to execute marketing and PR on the author’s behalf

·         Advertising

·         Book reviews

·         Testimonials

·         Participation in a conference or book fair

·         Someone to do their social media

·         Create videos

·         Execute an SEO campaign

·         Design a web site

·         Displaying of their book at a show or exhibit

·         Entry in to book awards

·         Boosted social media posts

·         Someone to ghostwrite blog posts

·         Create a website or write content for it

·         Get an influencer to champion the book


The list goes on and on. You can pay for anything – even for someone to walk your dog, shop for you, clean your house, sleep with your spouse, or chauffer you. Book marketing is the same way. People can buy their way to a best-seller list. They can pay for social media followers. They can buy access, influence, and status. Name a price.


Spend your money, but do spend it wisely. Don’t give up and don’t believe you’ve exhausted all that you can do. You just have not met the right book marketer yet. Hint, hint!


Need Book PR Help?

Brian Feinblum, the founder of this award-winning blog, can be reached at He is available to help authors promote their story, sell their book, and grow their brand. He has 30 years of experience in helping thousands of authors in all genres.


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About Brian Feinblum

Brian Feinblum should be followed on Twitter @theprexpert. This is copyrighted by BookMarketingBuzzBlog ©2021. Born and raised in Brooklyn, he now resides in Westchester with his wife, two kids, and Ferris, a black lab rescue dog. His writings are often featured in The Writer and IBPA’s The Independent.  This was named one of the best book marketing blogs by BookBaby and recognized by Feedspot in 2018 as one of the top book marketing blogs. It was also named by as a "best resource.” He recently hosted a panel on book publicity for Book Expo America. For more information, please consult: 

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