Promoting and marketing your book can be very scary. A lot of authors feel awkward promoting themselves and their book (while others can go overboard with self aggrandizement). But, if done right, marketing can be key for moving books.
The Makings of a Bestseller
What is the key to having a bestseller? There is no one strategy for making a book a best seller, and anyone that claims to have such a formula is probably just putting a PR spin on their services. The real question should be “what should I do to ensure this book has the opportunity to sell the best that this book can?”
Promoting a romance novel is much different than a book about selecting a geriatric specialist. The genre is different. The audience is different. The time of year that the book releases can also have an impact.
Perhaps the most important thing about promotion and marketing is to create a strategy before the book is even finished. This helps eliminate some of the spray and pray methods and hopping from one effort to the next without ever doing anything really well.
This promotion strategy should certainly include a budget. We’ve seen too often that a publisher uses the whole budget on book production, then nothing is left over for marketing. Marketing dollars have to be a priority from the start. If that means reducing your print run, so be it. If the book starts to sell well, you can use money from book sales toward the next print run.
You Aren’t Alone
Another tip to remember is that you don’t have to do it alone. If you are self publishing or even managing a small press, you have so much to take care of. You work with authors, arrange printing, work on cover design, find a distributor, and more. You have to learn how to do a lot. So you don’t need to worry about reinventing the wheel with marketing. There are a lot of book marketing firms out there with a track record in promoting books. They’ve seen what works and what doesn’t. They are an expert so you don’t have to be.
Amanda Dowdy is the blogger for the BookMasters Group. With nearly 40 years of experience, BookMasters can handle every step of the publishing process — from initial documentation and developmental editing to text and cover design, book printing, warehousing, fulfillment, and distribution. Check them out at www.bookmasters.com. You can also read their blogs at http://blog.bookmasters.com/ and http://blog.atlasbooksdistribution.com/.