Saturday, July 8, 2023

Why Do Some Book Campaigns Fail?

What if everything I know, do, and say about book marketing is useless to most people? Does this  mean that the advice and instruction that I give is wrong — or does it mean the people who are learning about book marketing are failing to execute what they are being taught?  

When I was a kid, there was a saying: The teacher didn’t fail the student; the student failed himself.    

So, which is it? 

There are many therapists whose patients do not get cured, resolve problems, or find happiness. Who is at fault there?  

There are many nutritionists who see patients that are fatter after having treated them. What the hell happened there? 

There are companies that hire consultants to fix a problem, overcome a challenge, or exploit a competitive opportunity — and the business afterwards is no better off financially than before the trainings commenced. Why?  

Book marketing is the same.   

Most book campaigns, at best, experience moderate success. Did the book promoter suck? Was the book mediocre? Did the author help? Was the campaign designed to achieve its intended outcome? Maybe all or some combination of these factors are true.  

Let’s examine all four key areas — and elements that could support or hamper success:  

The Book

* Is it new or old?

* On a niche or popular topic?

* Lots of competition or little?

* Is title catchy or awful?

* Is the cover attractive or ugly?

* Is it available in multiple formats?

* Is it priced fairly?

* Is it available beyond just amazon?

* Is it written and edited well?

* Did it win any book awards?

* Hit any best-seller lists?

* Get strong book reviews?  

The Marketer

* Is this person a strong communicator?

* Is he knowledgeable, skilled, and connected?

* Does he have experience in your genre?

* Does she have the bandwidth to work with you?

* Does she keep you updated?

* Does he brainstorm ideas with you?

* Is he opportunistic and assertive?  

The Author

* Qualified to write it?

* Good communicator?

* Are daily marketing efforts made?

* Does he follow-up?

* Does he plan well?

* Does he initiate?

* Is he smart enough to know what to do?

* Does he make time available to market?

* Does he have a good network to market his book?

* How often does he do what the marketer says should be done? 

The Campaign 

* Good plan?

* Good execution?

* Were deadlines met?

* If followed, was it designed to achieve the intended goal?

* Did you seek the right goal?  

Before you try to market your book and fail — and do a post-mortem review, do a pre-autopsy and try to plan better and anticipate what could go wrong. Seek to fix a problem before you have one. Launch a successful campaign when you, the marketer, the book, and the game plan are all on the same page.

Need Book Marketing 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 over 30 years of experience in successfully helping thousands of authors in all genres. Let him be your advocate, teacher, and motivator!


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About Brian Feinblum

Brian Feinblum should be followed on Twitter @theprexpert. This is copyrighted by BookMarketingBuzzBlog ©2023. 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 award-winning blog has generated over 3.3 million pageviews. With 4,400+ posts over the past dozen years, it was named one of the best book marketing blogs by BookBaby  and recognized by Feedspot in 2021 and 2018 as one of the top book marketing blogs. It was also named by as a "best resource.” For the past three decades, including 21 years as the head of marketing for the nation’s largest book publicity firm, and two jobs at two independent presses, Brian has worked with many first-time, self-published, authors of all genres, right along with best-selling authors and celebrities such as: Dr. Ruth, Mark Victor Hansen, Joseph Finder, Katherine Spurway, Neil Rackham, Harvey Mackay, Ken Blanchard, Stephen Covey, Warren Adler, Cindy Adams, Todd Duncan, Susan RoAne, John C. Maxwell, Jeff Foxworthy, Seth Godin, and Henry Winkler. He recently hosted a panel on book publicity for Book Expo America, and has spoken at ASJA, Independent Book Publishers Association Sarah Lawrence College, Nonfiction Writers Association, Cape Cod Writers Association, Willamette (Portland) Writers Association, APEX, and Connecticut Authors and Publishers Association. His letters-to-the-editor have been published in The Wall Street Journal, USA Today, New York Post, NY Daily News, Newsday, The Journal News (Westchester) and The Washington Post. He has been featured in The Sun Sentinel and Miami Herald. For more information, please consult:  



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