gabriel-786796-unsplash.jpg

Book Marketing 101

Marketing your book can easily become a full-time job, but with the proper plan, you’ll be able to execute your launch efficiently and successfully.

1. Establish the connection: follow bookstores, colleagues, media outlets, and influencers on social media. Set up a spreadsheet with all of your marketing leads on various tabs. These are people you are going to reach out to and offer a free ebook, or connect with them on how they can interview/feature you during your launch week:

  • podcasts - Set a goal of contacting 10/day. Be sure you have followed them on social media and been engaged in their online platforms (liking/sharing content) - that way they might recognize your name when you reach out.

  • instagram - Find the 'bookstagrammers' that review books in your field and inquire about their affiliate programs to feature your book. Look up which hashtags people are using in your industry through all-hashtags.com / you can also use later.com to schedule posts in advance.

  • facebook - Ads perform much better than boosted posts. You'll be able to define your audience. Give yourself some wiggle room, as sometimes ads aren't approved for 1-2 days. Consider doing some 45 second videos about your book (direct upload to facebook, do not go through youtube). Have someone interview you on your professional page, go through some selling points, speak with someone you have a testimonial from - these are all just ideas.

  • twitter - Follow all of the influencers, colleagues, and related accounts you can.

  • pinterest, linkedin, youtube - and all the channels should be included here, you get the idea and are likely already doing this.

2. Create book signing events and reason to keep the conversation going:

  • Start with 3-10 events for your new launch week - see if you can tie them to something interesting going on locally that already has buzz and traffic. This could be a conference speaking engagement, a giving opportunity, a clinical panel, a bookstore holiday health event, etc.

  • Refer to the lesson on event set up in Part 6.

3. Alert the media:

  • Send your press release, one sheet + book trailer (I can create these for you if needed) two weeks before your events start. The press will often want an engaging reason to announce a book (like a cool event or podcast episode) beyond the simple fact that another author has another book out.

  • Create facebook events from your professional accounts and invite friends and locals who will attend - show them you are a force to be reckoned with and that you can stir a crowd into coming to a signing event.

4. Place traditional ads / booth space:

  • If there are any professional publications or trade organizations that engage the readers in your warm market, consider placing an ad or coupon, or setting up a booth at one of their events. Often event organizers will work with authors on booth fees since our profit margins are so little. You can also avoid booth fees, and present yourself as an attraction/feature to help drive traffic to their event through a book signing.

5. Work an affiliate program:

  • Offer influencers a unique code for their audience to be able to purchase your book at a discount. Give you affiliates a 'thank you' for each purchase that comes through ($1/book or whatever you negotiate) - or trade marketing/networking their products.

  • Get in other people's newsletters - find someone with a large email list and offer them free content.

6. Guest post:

  • Find ways to syndicate, or feature your previously written content by putting it on larger platforms.

7. Consider a blog tour:

  • There are several companies that offer promotion by giving your book data to book influencers, who do reviews of your work and feature you on their blogs. A tour is when the bloggers take turns dripping your material all month. A blitz is when a group of bloggers focuses their marketing efforts on featuring your book all on the same day. I offer these services through my colleagues (Tiffany@WiseKitchenPress.com).

8. Start your own podcast:

  • I offer this as a service through and can get you set up on itunes, stitcher, and google play. See the lesson in Part 6.

9. Own all of the platforms:

  • Consider doing an audible version as well.

10. Write a monthly newsletter:

  • Be authentic with concise, relevant material. Be clear you're providing professional expertise and offer a place for readers to purchase your book, engage with you at a signing, and follow you online. Include a short excerpt, motivational quotes, or a look inside your life.

Next, map all of these tasks out on a timeline, working backwards from your new launch date. I like to plan my marketing tasks out about 6 months in advance. Remember to trust in the timing, there may have been a set back for a good reason.

Action You Can Take:

  • Ask your publisher when your launch date will be. Or, determine the best window of opportunity to launch your book.

  • Work a marketing plan 6 months backwards from your launch date.

  • Create launch activities, signings, promotions, and media for the week of your launch.