I'm struggling with issues regarding my book...How do you, or I, decide if it's worth spending the time and money to promote it? Yes, I put a lot of time and heart into it but... Do I rely on the "for hire" reviewers, do I believe the people around me? Should I believe the publishers who want up front money (thousands $) for promoting it? I can promote it myself, to some extent, but am I doing it right?
Hi James, with millions of books in many forms competing against you for your potential customers attention, proactively marketing your book is essential.
Some ways to promote your book only take a few minutes to implement, are free, and are permanant. Focus on these first, then go on to use promotions that take a greater amount of time or investment.
I have 8 children's ebooks on Amazon and the best ways I've found to create sales are these, so I hope some may be of value to you.
Firstly have a really eye-catching cover that will appeal to your specific readers.
Have a well thoughtout description that makes the reader want to know more.
Use the 'Look Inside' feature (if your book is an ebook) to your advantage and put as much interest in it as you can.
Use hyperlinks to your website or book as much as you can, and have an email signature.
You could also use 'google alerts' to alert you of any discussions taking place on the web, that have relevence to your book or subject matter. Join any conversations and share your knowledge.
Business cards are a good idea too.
Children's author and illustrator at:
Thanks Paula, it's nice to hear from another author with experience.
Trial and error John, what works for one may not work for another, but hopefully this thread will run and we'll all get some tips!
Children's author and illustrator at:
Unfortunately I don't think you can use a "formula" for promoting books. The key is to find a way to reach the readers who enjoy your writing style and genre as well as sub-genre. Writers of children's books aren't necessarily going to connect with their readers in the same places I'll connect with readers of mystery and thriller books. You will have to work at finding where your potential readers hang out on the web and that is a trial and error thing. You'll know you are doing it right when your books are selling. I suggest you set realistic goals and expect small incremental steps.
One thing is certain though, these days you had better have a web site. You can get one for less than ten bucks a month and set it up using templates. If you don't have one I suggest you get one.
Please, DON'T pay any "vanity publisher" upfront to promote your book or pay for reviews unless you have money to throw away. Resign yourself that as a writer you are also a small business person and you are going to have invest time to build your business and you may have to "slug away" for a time in order to be "an overnight success." You will have to be doing a lot of things to get attention.
Great advice Mike, thank you. If I already have an estore for the book would you still suggest that I get a website?
As my heroine in the Millie Mysteries would say, "You betcha!," and yes I have both. Exposure John, exposure. Do a Google search on your own name. Do you show up as an author? You need to!
I have to agree with the others - it's not so much about a formula as it is finding your niche and following that. What is the focus of your book? How can you connect with the audience that would be the likely readers? What makes you stand out from the other books in your genre? Do you have a marketing plan in place? Do you believe that what you have produced is worth the time and money that readers will be required to spend?
Answering these questions will help you determine the next step for your book.
I think you're asking a core -- and poignant -- question that not everyone seems to relate to. You are struggling with the idea that it may not be worth the tremendous effort it will take to make your book visible enough to attract a readership. I think one of the issues we're all dealing with is that each book takes a lot of effort to market, and we have to produce more than one book to be successful. You really have to love what you're doing and feel that you are producing valuable content in order to face the marketing challenges. I can say a lot more about this, having 8 books in Kindle that are selling steadily and one on the way, but for right now, please do not give money to publishers up front to promote. That's not the solution. Let's keep talking. -- Suzanna Stinnett
Thanks Suzanna, I really appreciate the input! I don't know if I'm going to write another, my first was not planned. I guess I'll wait and see what some reviewers have to say...So far I'm getting positive feedback but it's mostly from friends and family.
Thank you again for sharing!
Advertising is essential in today's very competitive market. Like Paula mentioned earlier there are different options on how to promote before you spend a whole lot of money. But you must believe in your book if you want to interest others or convince them to read it. If you pay thousands to promote it whoever you hire will promote it but you have to believe it's worth the effort. But there are many ways to do it where you don't have to spend that much money. The suggestions made by Paula are good and good to begin with. Let people know the book exist as much as possible for word of mouth is a great tool and it's free.
www.outskirtspress.com/love child Love Child is the name of my own book and promoting it has been a struggle indeed but I will keep trying and working on it.
Do not go the for hire reviewers-as someone who organizes blog tours for books, I can tell you there are a lot of blogs out there willing to review it for free-it just takes finding the right ones.
Thanks Colette, can you recommend any?