Finishing your first book is a fantastic achievement. Getting people to know about it, and want to read it, is another battle altogether. There are thousands of authors who are actively promoting their book at any one time. You will need to work hard to get in amongst that crowd, and then to rise above it. Effective book promotion is a combination of knowledge, creativity, patience, and practice. Read on for some essential tips to effectively and inexpensively promote your book. Then, in no time, you’ll have the ability to successfully promote your book!
Think of your favorite, contemporary authors. Look at all the promotion they go through to get their books in the public discourse. There are advertisements, reviews, discounts, social media and more. There might be book signings, press releases and even public readings. The fact is, people need to read your book in order to spread it’s message. So, let’s get started.
Create a Cover
One of the most important steps in getting your book noticed is to have a professional cover. This will give your book a visual identity, and allow people to recognize it. If you are not a professional artist, and do not have a friend who is one, there are a lot of freelance graphic online who can help. You want something that is eye catching, related to the story, and intriguing. You can use the cover design in a number of different areas, not just as the cover.
Make a Plan
Before you do any marketing, you need to put together a marketing plan. One of the first steps is to get information on local people who can help you. You are looking for newspaper, radio and television contacts, book reviewers, and other authors. Also make a list of venues that you can use to promote your book such as libraries, bookstores and book festivals. You are going to have to create a set of marketing tools to approach the people and places you have selected, in order to get them interested in your book.
Make Promotional Materials
One of the first things to do is to make up some business cards utilizing the cover art of your book. You can hand these out to people you meet during the course of your marketing efforts, to reinforce the image of your book. Make sure your bio is up to date and relevant to your book and is accompanied by a good quality professional photo. Prepare a synopsis and some sample chapters. You will need all these materials in both printed and digital form for distribution.
Create a Press Release
A press release is one of your best weapons for getting the release of your book known. It is not necessarily the first step after finishing your book, as you need to raise awareness of your profile first. A good press release needs to be quite concise, but catchy, as it is an excellent chance to grab attention for your book. What you really want is to get your book into retail and online stores.
Key components of a good press release include a summary of the story line, why it is different and interesting, what it gives to the reader, and why someone should pick it up, and read it. Ideally, you want to convey all of this information in just a few well written sentences. Make several drafts and use your family and friends as a sounding block to find out which version is the most appealing to them.
Create a Web Page
There are a number of online providers who can help you with creating a website. Some of them are free, others you will have to pay for. If you do not know anyone who is a web designer, consider hiring someone online to do it for you. Your webpage needs to contain all of your promotional material such as your bio, samples, cover art, and interesting information related to, but not part of, your book. You can also offer your book for sale on the website, if your publisher allows this.
Use Social Media to Raise Your Profile
If you do not have a Facebook page or a Twitter account, create both. This is just the first step to a good social media marketing plan. In addition to your website you can create a fan page, or include teasers and promotional information about your book on your homepage. Join writers’ clubs, reading communities and book clubs. Find discussion groups focused on the same genre as your book, and participate in them actively. Try not to over promote yourself on these websites, just mention your work from time to time.
Get Some Online Reviews
You want to get some online reviews done to complete your marketing tool kit. There are a lot of different blog sites that specialize in new books. Find several that seem sympathetic and approach them for a review. Many of the large online book distributors have a section that provides new authors the option to be read, and reviewed. You need several reviews to round off your promotional materials. Moreover, this is all a part of book promotion and marketing.
Prepare a Press Kit
Once you have all your promotional and online material finished you need to put together a press kit. This should contain your press release, a copy of your book in both hard and digital form, a selection of positive online reviews, your business card and your bio and photo. Prepare a letter introducing yourself and your book. Send the press kit out to the list of local journalists, book reviewers and radio and television stations that you compile at the beginning. Having done all the groundwork there is a good chance some of them will read your book and give you some valuable local press.
Book promotion is not a quick overnight process. You will need to work long and hard at it. These steps are just the beginning of a long process, but by completing each step carefully, you will lay the groundwork for your books success.