Before You Publish: Best Practices for Book Marketing
Ever wonder how you are going to sell more books during the first year of publication? When I wrote my book I had no idea about marketing me or the book. I was so thrilled to find a publisher willing to publish it, nothing else seemed to matter. I had visions of my book becoming an instant bestseller with media begging me for interviews. I’ve learned a lot since I came crashing down to earth after floating on a cloud with a publishing contract in hand.
Best practices for book marketing apply to everyone, whether contracted by a publisher or self-publishing. And, the marketing of you and your book needs to begin long before your book is published.
First of all, begin setting-up social media while writing your book. Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin, Google+, Pinterest, and Instagram and of course registering as an author on Goodreads are just a few platforms I recommend. Ensure that these accounts are separate to any personal accounts you have. That said, leverage your personal email contact lists to gain an early buzz, asking friends and their friends to like or follow you and your book. I find it hard to juggle postings every day (yes, you should post on Twitter at least once a day and Facebook 4 times a week). Updating social media takes valuable time away from what you love doing most; writing. Programs such as Hootsuite are excellent for organizing social media postings all in one place.
Blog as often as you can, at least twice a month. Blogging builds relationships between you and the reader, so finding your niche content brings followers and potential readers of your book. Make sure you post your blog on all social media sites.
Once you’re ready to publish, give yourself some time and submit either paper or digital galleys to media who may be willing to review your book. Send it to several journalists with a different pitch, at the same paper or magazine. Most newspapers and magazines will no longer review a book once it has been published. Early reviews can make a huge difference to sales, establishing your credibility as a writer.
Ultimately, it’s all about the quality of your book. If you’re submitting your manuscript to an agent or publisher, make sure it’s well edited. Even if you are self-publishing, your biggest and first investment should be a professional editor. You’ve put hours into telling your story, make sure it’s the best it can be and then market it with all your heart!