To promote or not, that is the great dilemma. If you are an author, you have to promote your book or no one will know it is there. Besides, even if you are traditionally published you are expected to promote your book. If you ask me, promoting is the least fun thing you do as an author. After all, you want to move on into your next book, not spend hours convincing people that they should buy your book.
Most of the time, promotion is the last thing an author thinks of, and in many cases, they publish their books and have no idea that they should have started to promote it a year before it came out of the oven. Here you will find some ideas to get you comfortable with the thought and you won’t freeze in stupor when you get there.
1. Send out free PDFs, or eBooks, to bloggers who have tons of followers. If your book is non-fiction, send out digital copies to influential journalists. Ask the bloggers to review it in their blogs. (Some bloggers or reviewers need a month to read the book. Always ask way beforehand.)
2. Pull out excerpts of the book to use as articles. Post them on free sites.
3. Create videos. Keep it short and sweet (under 10 m.) In one, talk about you. In another, talk about your book. Then in another, read an excerpt from it, etc.
4. Create a book trailer. Find pictures that reflect the content of your book and then use excerpts from the book to tease people to read more. Never tell the ending and make it short.
5. Schedule a launch day and make sure plenty of things are planned that day. Notify your email list, facebook, goodreads, twitter, a week before and then the day of. Don’t forget to post the different links to your videos and trailer’s one at the time.
6. Offer a digital copy as a prize on other websites and blogs. Offer the blogger or website owners a free paperback book for their help. You can have a goodreads giveaway…
7. Ask other bloggers to do an interview and send them lots of questions you made up, with their answers. (You can send the same list to all of them and they can pick how long and what to post from it.)
[Related: Need help editing your book? We can help.]
8. If you assign these bloggers to do your review on a different day of the week each, this is called a Blog tour. Make sure every day has one blogger or more assigned to it. You’ll gain maximum exposure for minimum costs. Select other authors or readers to do this…other authors, will get you in contact with other readers.
9. Offer a chapter as a downloadable PDF. Encourage readers to share it with others.
10. Publish the book’s table of contents on your website. Include a small overview of each chapter. (Really short) Optimize the page for search engines. (List many pertinent tags to attract new readers looking for your genre.)
11. Encourage people to write a five-star review of your book on Amazon.com, Barnes & Noble, GoodReads.
12. Publish reviews and testimonials of the book on your website. Include links to the reviews from Amazon.com and other sites.
13. Makes sure you always say thank you to all that help you and join their sites to show that you appreciate their help.
14. Make bookmarks to pass along. They are more usable than cards which are easily thrown away. (Check online for cost-effective sources.) Make sure they contain your website and email.
15. Always have copies of your book and bookmarks with you or in your car.
16. Be creative, persistent and grateful for the help of others and you’ll see your book sales go up. It isn’t their obligation to tell others about your book, so help them back.
17. It isn’t a bad Idea if you have authors or readers friends to ask them for a review, so you can use a small insert on the back or in the first page of your book.
I hope these ideas help you start your great future as a writer. Don’t forget to share your success with others and help them get ahead too. It’s called pay it forward. It’s always sweeter when you get to the top and your readers, friends, and family are cheering you on. Happy promoting to you.
Anna del C. Dye was born in Chile. She has received six awards for her stories. She is fluent in Spanish & English and lives in Utah, with her husband of thirty-nine years. The Silent Warrior Trilogy belongs to her Elf Series that includes, seven stand-alone high fantasy books. Also, her A Royal Romance series includes, Once Upon Two Kingdoms, A Kingdom By The Sea & A Golden Princess. She has also authored The Chancellor from Connier and a middle-grade book, Emerine’s nightmare, published digitally.