Launching your book is a big accomplishment! Follow these 10 steps to get the most out of your book launch.
Whether you’re beginning your author platform or multiple years in and looking for the next right addition, you’ve probably thought about starting a blog. Your options are endless, beginning can be daunting, and it can be hard to narrow down your niche so your blog can be as effective as possible.
It’s no secret that email lists are one of the best marketing tools to have in your belt. They allow you to reach your followers in one of the most intimate ways any person or brand can—their inbox.
Whether you live on the road, spend most of your days teaching students, clients, or customers, or you manage your own trade business and sell handmade products, a book could help your business reach new markets and your advice reach new customers.
Not convinced yet? Here are three ways a book may support your business.
There is one question most authors dread more than any other question in the world. Your friends ask it, your family asks it, your followers ask it. And someday, your readers will ask it, too.
“What’s your book about?”
No matter what stage of the writing process you’re in—whether you’re just beginning the first draft or you’re sitting at a table in a bookstore for an author signing, this question (or some variation on it) will crop up.
So how do you answer it? How do you take all your hours of passion and research and boil it down to an answer that won’t scare off the asker?
Nailing down how to do this will help you in every stage of marketing your book—whether you’re trying to land an agent or publisher or trying to gather interest from readers.
Over the last few years, and especially over the Covid-19 pandemic, TikTok has become one of the most powerful social media platforms available to authors and influencers.
TikTok has a proven track record of taking someone who is relatively unknown and giving them a seemingly unlimited stage. As one of the top ten most used social media platforms, TikTok is becoming the space to be.
You’ve decided you’re ready to pursue publication. Whether you’re going to self publish, hybrid publish, or go a more traditional route, it’s likely you’ll eventually need to put together a website. You have a few options for how you can go about this, but no matter which way you choose, you’ll need to be prepared with material to populate your website.
It’s no secret that your author career benefits from having an active online presence. It’s also well known that there’s no fast way to build a platform that will last long into your career and bring the results you’re hoping for time and time again.
Posting about your book around publication is fairly straightforward, but what should you post in the off season? Maybe you’re waiting for the right links to share or your book is on submission and it will be a while before you’ll have a product to share. It’s also possible your last book released six months ago and your next one comes out in another six months but there’s nothing to say about it yet. What do you post about then?
Every author needs a webpage, and yet as gifted as authors are with words, they often find it remarkably difficult to decide what to include on their website. If you find yourself in this group, don't despair. You are most definitely not alone. And we are here to help.
Your website can be as fancy or as simple as you want it to be. But there are a few things that every good author website will have:
If you're an author these days, it's generally expected that you have a Facebook and Twitter account, among numerous other social media accounts. People rarely ask anymore, "Do you have a Facebook page?" instead asking, "What's your Facebook page?" or "What's your Twitter handle?"
As fabulous as authors are at writing stories, both true and make-believe, they often struggle with what to put on their Facebook page and Twitter feed. In fact, that's one of the most common questions we get from our authors.
Here's a post with some specific ideas to help move you along:
Virtual Book Tours, also known as blog tours, are an excellent way for authors to promote themselves and their books.
- – Blog tours seem to use all the advantages of social media, plus the "tour stops" are recorded on the blogs and last far beyond the event date, so there's some real staying power involved.
- – Good tour hosts are kind to the authors and their books, but they are also honest, so readers know they can trust the blog host. That lends credibility to the tour stop and the reviews.
- – The biggest quandary for the modern author is deciding which is the biggest perk: how budget-friendly viritual book tours are or the fact that you can do them in your bathrobe and slippers.
Pinterest is the fastest growing standalone website ever. And while recipes, dream travel destinations, style tips, and adorable photos of cats seem to dominate the site's content, there is plenty of room for authors. If you are a published author or want to become one, you should be on Pinterest.
While Pinterest is a visual way to share online content, there are a surprisingly large number of readers and booklovers on the site. While images drive the pins, Pinterest is about so much more than pictures––it's about sharing your favorite things, finding inspiration, and building knowledge.
Are you sitting down? I have some news for you: Not everyone is going to like your book. When they don't, you have two choices: 1) Move on or 2) Move into a cabin in the woods.
Nobody likes a bad review. Not you. Not your publisher. Not even the reviewer who most likely feels she wasted her time. But bad reviews do happen.
So what's the best way to handle the inevitable bad review? Do nothing. Seriously. PR experts across the industry agree that the best thing to do is absolutely nothing. Move on and keep working.
If you can't do nothing, then your other option is to take a deep breath, step back, and glean what constructive bits you can from the criticism. Learn from the reviewer and consider if there's anything you can apply to improve your work.
Use our handy pre-publication checklist to help you schedule your marketing and promotional tasks for your book. Make sure you get started early––some of the items on the checklist start as early as 12 months before publication!
You’ve finished your book. You’re in your last round of edits. You’re cover design is in the process of being finalized. You’re ready to pass out copies to friends.
And just when you thought writing your book was the hard part, now it’s time to promote your work. But don’t worry. We’re here to help.
The first step after publishing your book is to understand the importance of book promotion and starting early. And I mean really early, as in a year to six months in advance.
Are you tired of asking your friend’s kids for help on the Internet? Do you dread scheduling a post—let alone writing one? Are you embarrassed by your social media accounts?
You can stop worrying about that now. As a sneak peak into Pub Light: A Publisher’s Introduction to Selling your Book in 10 Easy Steps (available this month), this week starts a series of blog posts that can help you answer all of the questions you’re constantly asking yourself when it comes to social media. By tuning into our weekly blog, you will be able to learn about snippets from our latest book as well as instructions on how to revamp your online presence in order to build up your book brand.
First up: Facebook.
No matter where you're at in your online marketing, we're here to help you represent yourself in the most effective and most helpful ways possible. This is a masterlist of all our resources for online marketing. We've covered everything from author websites and social media to email newsletters and blogs. This list will be constantly growing, so check back soon for more resources!
Having trouble keeping up with what’s trending online? Confused by all the hashtags? Want a key to all the shorthand messages? The second post to guide you through the social media universe is here.
Twitter is essentially a timeline of micro-blogging. By tweeting messages of 140 characters or less, you can share, respond or interact with other users in real-time. You can form a relationship with your followers by becoming a “person,” not just a name on a page.
You should use Twitter to share your thoughts and movements. Tweet what you’re doing, where you’re going, highlights from your life, and books you’re reading. Remember, Twitter is not a shouting media platform. It’s social media. So be social. All posts should reflect a personal, author brand that you’re trying to build.
Instagram is a photo and video sharing social media platform.
Users can post and edit images with captions or view the images of those users and friends that you follow. News organizations, magazines, events, interest groups and more use Instagram to share information. You can also use it. For example, you may post a sneak peak of your latest book cover. You may post a picture of a place where you write or create a contest to engage with followers. You can also create book quote images using one of the graphic creators we will cover later on.
Have the normal social media sites under control? Are you a Facebook genius, but want to branch out into something different? Or do you want to try something besides Twitter and FB to connect with readers? Then reddit is a great place to connect.
By now you know that using social media sites such as Facebook, Twitter and Instagram are a free and effective way to build an audience. Luckily, authors and booklovers have another option to connect with readers: Goodreads. Goodreads (Goodreads.com) is a book lover’s social media haven where members can keep track of books they love, books they hate, and books they want to read. Friends can share recommendations, readers post reviews, and members can even sign up to win books through the giveaway program.
Everyone has heard the cliché “Don’t choose a book by its cover.” But we all still do that to an extent, don’t we? People do judge a book by its cover. Most people let their opinions of a cover at least subconsciously shadow their perception of a book.
Looks matter. Thus, the cover matters.
Another way to spread the word about your new book and keep readers updated is through an email newsletter. That’s right. Don’t just send one email. Send many. Invite friends, family and readers to sign up for your newsletter either online or at your launch party. If you commit to writing a newsletter you should send it quarterly, monthly, or weekly depending on your schedule.
So now you have all of the accounts set up—but maintaining 2 to 3 social media platforms isn’t as easy as it seems. Creating original content for each individual site can be tricky. Do you always and only find yourself retweeting on Twitter or sharing other people’s posts on Facebook? There’s another way to engage in social media! Using one or a combination of the tools in the next section:
By Fauzia Burke
One of the nation's leading online book marketing experts, Fauzia Burke recently published Online Marketing for Busy Authors: A Step by Step Guide. Sharing her expertise of online publicity, book publishing and social media, Fauzia points out trends authors should focus on.
Important Trends and Statistics for Authors
When authors stay on top of trends, they can use the information to develop more effective online marketing strategies. Your author platform is your ability to reach your readers and build a community. Here are 12 trends to note for authors:
By Kylee Wooten
The biggest “do” of all: You should need to be on social media. These days, having a Twitter account and a Facebook page are almost as essential to your success as an author actually having a book.
One of the things that we continue to stress to our authors is the importance of a strong presence on Amazon. Amazon has a dedicated "Author Central" page, where authors can "claim" his/her books, post a bio, updates and trade reviews, and more. As one of the largest book retailers in the world, we believe in the importance of utlizing Amazon to its full capacity. Brooke Warner breaks down the most important misconceptions, little known facts and valuable tips for authors to consider when they are navigating the world of Amazon. This article was originally featured in Huffington Post.
In the age of digital marketing, the world is your oyster as you launch your book. There are millions of readers out there, waiting for a book like yours to cross their screen. But how do you reach them?
There are a few options you can use as you create publicity and marketing campaigns to spread the word about your book.
It’s easy to get discouraged when your book isn’t selling as well as you hoped or expected. After all, as an author, you signed up to write books. You likely don’t have a business or marketing degree, and when it comes to the world of book sales, it’s natural to feel overwhelmed and disappointed when there’s so much to learn and so little seems to make a difference.
Don’t despair. Selling books is a totally different animal from writing books. This part of the business is tricky and takes a bit of finesse.
If your book sales aren’t where you’d like them to be, there are a few things you can do.
What defines success for an author? Is is the number of books sold? The number of awards they recieve? Authors Brad A. LaMar and Susan Örnbratt join us for this week's Ask the Authors blog post on defining and finding success as an author. If you have any questions you'd like to ask our authors, make sure to leave a comment on our Facebook or Twitter!