From Published to #1 Amazon Bestseller in 3 Months

forgiveness-formulaMy husband and I recently launched our book, “Forgiveness Formula: Finding Lasting Freedom in Christ” on December 6th, 2011. In preparation for our book launch we designed a four month book marketing plan. This plan included a website as our main hub, including a blog, as well as several key social media outlets: Twitter, Facebook and YouTube.

I won’t lie to you – book marketing online takes a lot of hard work. We spent many hours setting up our author platform and preparing for our launch day. We set up a custom landing page on Facebook as well as a customized YouTube background. We also began posting on our blog and recruiting others to share their stories of forgiveness on our blog as well.

Hosting a Free Online Conference to Generate Buzz

We also decided to host a free 4-day Christian conference online to generate buzz, interest and a list of people who might be interested in buying our book on launch day. We secured four speakers whose topics fit well with our target audience and then conducted live audio interviews over the phone using the free service, Freeconferencing.com. We also made these audio interviews available afterwards on our website as an online replay. We had over 350 conference registrants and a great response to the speakers and their topics.

Not only did the conference build momentum for our launch day, but those that attended the conference got to know us better. In marketing, it’s important to build relationships with your customers (in this case, our readers) to gain their trust. You want them to get to the place where they “know, like and trust” you. An audio conference is a great way to build these relationships with your readers.

Book Launch Day

Currently, we give away the MP3 downloads from the conference as well as the PDF transcripts as a bonus for those who purchase our book. On launch day, we also had other Christian authors, musicians and ministries offer bonus gifts. In fact, we gave away a total of 43 prizes worth over $1150 and 19 gifts worth over $100 available on launch day. We decided to offer a grand prize of one Kindle Fire, iPod touch or Nook (winner’s choice).

The Final Result?

We published our book on August 24th and on December 6th, just over 3 months later, our book became a #1 Amazon bestseller in inspirational Christianity for both books and ebooks! Wow…what an amazing journey it has been. And we give all the glory to God.

We are finishing up our four month book marketing plan with a virtual book tour. We thank Cathy for hosting us and allowing us to share about our book marketing strategies. And we pray our book impacts many lives for years to come.

Shelley Hitz is the co-author of Forgiveness Formula: Finding Lasting Freedom in Christ, along with her husband, CJ. Visit their website to find out more about their book and the special gifts they offer with purchase at: www.TheForgivenessFormula.com. Shelley also helps authors get published and market their books at her website http://www.shelleyhitz.com/.

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