I went to a conference recently and heard a panel of authors speaking about how to promote a book once it’s been written and published. What?! Sure, you want to promote your book once it’s published, but more importantly you want to promote the book before it’s published. You want to promote while you’re writing it. You want to build excitement before it makes its way into Amazon.
Other items I gleaned from the author panel was that they all seemed to liken social media and promotion to having a root canal — slow, grueling and painful. I am not certain why they all seemed to require social media as an evil, but they did. Could it be because, as writers, they are solitary creatures? Possibly. But, I wanted to point out that using social media to promote your book and blogging about your book are great — and low-cost, no-cost ways — to promote your written word.
What should you do if you’ve written, or are writing, a book to promote it? Here are some thoughts:
- Promote while you’re writing. This will have a double edged effect: you have now announced to the world that you’re writing a book so you will have to finish it! It will also build excitement. You can also let your readers into your “writer’s lifestyle” and share with them what the process is like.
- Don’t constantly sell the book… sell the information that is in it. I wrote a book about social media for the pet blogger. When I post on social media about it, I offer tips from the book, I don’t continually say, “Hey I wrote this book.” Of course I link to it and mention the title, but I am giving away tidbits that readers will find useful.
- Find a trusted group of colleagues and ask them to help you with a launch party. You can provide them with free reader’s copies. In return ask them to blog about your book, share it on their social. Offer your first readers a gift for helping you out.
- Start a book club for your book. Why not gather like-minded colleagues and ask them to read your book as part of a book club. You could work with colleagues who have also authored books and have a round robin of all of your publications. If you’ve written fiction, a book club should be a natural.
- Send press releases to your local newspapers to let them know you’ve authored a book. Offer to do book signings at local book stores. If you’ve written a book about pets, talk with a local pet store and see if they’d host you for a signing. If you’ve written a cozy mystery, contact the local tea shop and see if you could have a book signing there — cozies and tea go together, in case you were wondering! Be creative in your marketing of the book.
- Offer gifts to those who buy your book on launch day. If you can sell a lot of copies on one single day, you just might see your book jump up in the Amazon rankings as a “best seller” even if it’s only for a few hours — it is a label you can put onto your book.
Are you writing, or have you written, a book? How are you promoting it? I’d love to hear your creative ideas.
Robbi works with authors, would-be authors and freelance writers to help them organize their work, their words and their professional lives. Contact her at Robbi AT Lipstickingsociety DOT.com You can find her book, “Your Field Guide To Becoming A Pet Blogger” here.