Last week I attended the Public Safety Writers Association Conference. One of the presenters was Patricia Fry, a full-time writer, speaker, consultant, editor and the author of 39 books. Patricia spoke about author promotion, emphasizing that the role falls to the author, rather than the publisher. Here are some important points to consider about book promotion:
- No matter which publishing option you choose, it is up to the author to promote his/her book.
- Your book will sell for as long as you are willing to promote it.
- There are hundreds of ways to promote your book and most of them are free, but many of them do take time, thought, effort, creativity and energy.
- In order to successfully promote your book, you MUST know who your audience is and where they are (what they read, where they buy books, etc.)
- Target your marketing efforts toward your target audience.
- When devising your marketing plan, remember to think, “exposure, exposure, exposure.”
- Experiment and discover which promotional effort is most effective for you and for your particular book. Do more of that activity!
- Don’t give up after one disappointing promotional activity–the next book festival (presentation, book signing, etc.) might be ultra successful.
- Be open to new promotional ideas, but don’t spread yourself too thin. Keep to the basics that are working.
- Before launching out to speak, do a book signing, etc., put out a LOT of publicity. Use all of your social media accounts, newspapers, appropriate newsletters, posters, blogs, your email list, etc.
- Seek out unusual, but appropriate,venues for presentations/signings/demonstrations and to place your books for sale. Choose locations where your audience congregates, shops, etc.
- For fiction–do home parties and let guests help act out a scene–bring costumes/props.
This is just the tip of the iceberg. Use your imagination and get creative in planning your own marketing plan–always keeping your audience/readers in mind. Patricia’s, “Promote Your Book, Over 250 Proven, Low-Cost (mostly free) Tips and Techniques for the Enterprising Author” has hundreds more ideas for both fiction and nonfiction authors.