Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Seven Book Marketing Ideas

Last year was pretty amazing for me. I finally signed a publishing contract and announced my big news to the world. For now the excitement is subsiding a little (I’m clinging on),


so I’ve forced myself to start thinking about the next steps. It’s generally accepted that most authors don’t write for the money, and we all know we have to do a lot of the marketing and promotion ourselves these days to increase book sales. Well, this is my next step, deciding what, when, how, and where to get my novel read. Here’s a few ideas I’m dabbling with, and I'd love for you to share your experiences with me.

Social Media/Online Presence
Yeah, obvs. In fact, there’s some crazy belief that authors are assessed by the number of Twitter followers they have. Pretty silly. But virtual presence is a must. Plus, most of the sites are free to set up a profile: Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, Instagram, LinkedIn, etc. etc.. Can’t think of a negative, other than the amount of time I’d need to dedicate to these sites, especially if I set up accounts on all of them. Time that probably ought to be spent writing. Oh, and a website is a definite asset – I’ve got one, so for me it’ll again be keeping it updated and interactive, particularly as I write for kids.

I see lots of these going on. I’ve entered a few myself. It’s a good way to reach more readers who will hopefully like my book and tell more people about it. Word of mouth is, without doubt, still the biggest way to spread the love, and increase sales. Along the same lines, I’m also thinking of donating a book to local children’s wards as well as copies to school libraries, etc. There’s also giving books to raffles at local events and perhaps even national ones, too. So obviously the downside is paying for these books, but if it leads to more sales then I guess it has to be done. 

I’m already working on this; offering advance copies to book reviewers and bloggers. A great way to get my name out there nice and early. There are certain very trusted and experienced reviewers around; I follow an awful lot on Twitter. I guess the risk involved here is if they don’t like my book and the review isn’t great. Only I can decide if this is a risk worth taking. I’m trying to get as many kids to review it, too, as I’d like to set up a page on my website dedicated to this. I’m thinking maybe of the odd competition for the best reviews – maybe even write to schools and get more kids involved.

Interviews, blog tours and guest appearances
Again, there are plenty of wonderful and well-respected bloggers out there who spend their time interviewing and hosting authors. Often they might request authors to be interviewed via social media sites, so I’m keeping an eye out. No negatives really, other than the questions they ask might be tricky to answer, but hopefully I’ll be OK considering I’m a writer! I’m also considering other mediums; radio, newspapers, magazines, TV (if I’m lucky). But all in good time with these.

Book launches/parties/signings
Another obvious one. Connecting directly with readers, but this time in the flesh. Hard, as I’m a classic writer who resides (hides) in hermitville.


If I can remove the pyjamas and brush my hair, I plan to find local bookstores, libraries and other venues that might be happy to have me; throw a party; sell and sign some copies of my book. Sounds easy enough, unless no one turns up. I’m really working on making it appealing and sound fun, different, offer those who come something for free; from a cake to a bookmark to a raffle prize. Anything to draw in the crowds. Or at least more than five people!

Sponsorship/paid advertising
I’m well aware of the hordes willing to take my money and advertise my book; maybe tweeting information about it and a link five times a day. Some are great; some aren’t so. I guess, it’s all in the research. I am following, checking and watching any services I’m interested in using, making sure they really do plug those authors who sign up for their services, but in a decent, classy way. Money is precious, so I plan to spend it wisely.

School/writing group/community group readings
This is something I need to build up my confidence for, but I think a brilliant way to get work into lots of new hands. When I’m ready, I will advertise my willingness on my website and via social media; contact local groups and learning centres; contact coffee shops and libraries; request testimonials after the visit, etc. No downside really, other than me needing to socialise and stand up in front of lots of staring, expectant faces, whilst fighting the crimson cheek attack. 

These are the first options I’m working on but, if you can think of anything else, anything revolutionary and guaranteed to bring success, please tell me and other YAtopia readers in the comments. If something has worked for you I’d love to hear about it. 

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