To be successful as an author, you must think short-term and long-term in your approach to book marketing. If you plan to pen more than one book in your lifetime, start planning ahead.
Let’s look at two tracks of time. First, we’ll examine evergreen things that should ALWAYS be done, and should especially be done months and years before you publish a book.
1. Establish your social media platform.
Determine which sites you will be on and sign up for them. Fill out your
profile, get on a posting schedule, and reach out to increase your number of
followers and connections. This is an ongoing thing. You will continually
update your profile with new accomplishments. You will regularly post new
content, and you will, almost daily, take specific action steps to solicit new
2. Create a website for you as a writer. You are a brand, an entity, and as such, need a place to call home. Over time, the site will evolve and grow with each new book or writing accomplishment.
3. Always network online and in-person. Attend events, seek out others who can be of assistance, and make notes while exchanging contact information. You never know when you’ll need someone.
4. Develop a good email list. You will need this to eventually sell your book and seek favors.
5. Join writer associations and groups. They can be helpful, inspiring, and resourceful.
6. Learn more about marketing, writing, researching, editing, and publishing. Read books, attend seminars, join online workshops or take classes.
7. Get on the speaking circuit. Even if you start with free talks at a church, the local Y, schools, or a non-profit, you build up your experience and speaking skills.
8. Save money for marketing and develop a marketing plan.
9. Make a list of everyone you know -– and note how they can help you. Do they know things that can help you? Do they know people who can help you? Do they have a skill that could assist you? Do they have lists of people that can be contacted to buy your book? Do they have a leadership or authoritative position, where they can supply a testimonial for your work or expertise?
10, Develop a marketing ideas notebook, Every time you have an idea on how to promote yourself, write it down. When the time’s right, evaluate these ideas and act on the best ones.
Once you have a scheduled release date in mind for your book, work backwards about six months. So, if you plan to release a book on September 1st, you’ll need to begin things on March 1st, and as you move closer to your anticipated book release date, additional things will need to be done.
6 Months Prior To Release
- Research keywords for your book.
- Develop a descriptive copy of the book.
- See drafts of possible book covers.
- Start building your website or add pages to an existing one.
- Research events, conferences, and fairs you’d like to attend or speak at.
5 Months Prior To Release
- Bring in some professional help, such as a book marketer or promoter.
- Develop content for future blogs or social media posts –- pen it while you have time but plan to use some of it later.
- Write your press kit materials.
- Develop a speaker’s kit.
4 Months Prior To Release
- Send advance review copies out to long lead book review publications.
- Seek out blurbs for your book cover.
- Create a business card featuring your book.
- Develop marketing materials, such as a postcard or flier.
- Plan another event for your book.
3 Months Prior To Release
- Send the book out for paid book reviews.
- Keep following up on activities such as social media, seeking out speaking engagements, etc.
- Keep networking and asking for help.
- Craft a book trailer.
- Join Good Reads and Net Galley.
2 Months Prior To Release
- List your book for pre-sales on sites like Amazon.
- Solicit bloggers and online book reviewers for reviews/featured stories.
- Publish your newsletter.
- Put a free download on your site to entice people to give you their name and email. What will this download or gift be? Decide now, put it up, and swap it out for something new over the coming months.
- Pitch other media, (non-book reviewers), such as daily newspaper feature editors, radio shows, podcasters, TV shows, magazines, newsletters, and trade journals. Seek out interviews, feature stories, or byline opportunities.
- Start promoting your launch event.
1 Months Prior To Release
- Follow-up on all of the above.
- Start placing ads online for your book.
- Beg, trade, or pay for people that you know to buy copies of your book or to help you sell it.
- Confirm upcoming bookstore signings and appearances.
There are other steps to be taken prior to, during and post-launch, but you get the idea. Get to work today, tomorrow, and always, because branding an author is a lifetime process.
Please Contact Me For Help
Brian Feinblum, the founder of this award-winning blog, can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org He is available to help authors promote their story, sell their book, and grow their brand. He has 30 years of experience in successfully 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 ©2022. 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 http://blog.bookbaby.com/2013/09/the-best-book-marketing-blogs and recognized by Feedspot in 2018 as one of the top book marketing blogs. It was also named by WinningWriters.com as a "best resource.” He recently hosted a panel on book publicity for Book Expo America. For more information, please consult: .