Book Marketing: What are the Essentials? - article

You’ve written a book, and you may be wondering what to do next. Next you must market your book. To succeed in the noise-filled, content- saturated market, you need to stand out from the crowd. Marketing will help your book cut through the chatter and reach its audience. Here’s a list and description of common marketing tasks and what they entail.


Every marketing campaign needs content. First, authors need to create a press release for their book. But a press release by itself does not constitute a marketing campaign. In addition, you need to create press kit material. You should prepare an author bio and a book summary. In addition, choose excerpts from your book that will showcase it. Also prepare a list of interview questions. All these elements form the press kit. With this specialized material ready to go, it’s time to think about distribution.

Online Marketing

Beyond a website that offers a virtual press kit and beyond sending out a press release electronically, authors need to be involved in social networking on Twitter, Facebook and Google+. Give potential readers information about your book, as well as guides on how to purchase it. Share quotes from the book or stories of funny things that happened while writing it. Online marketing also includes reaching out to bloggers and other interested parties for reviews. Check out Self Publishing Review (SPR) for a site devoted to news and reviews of self-published books. SPR also has links to many sites that review self-published books.

Print Marketing

Authors still sell, believe it or not, hard copies of their books. Authors should assemble press kits to offer to local, regional and national media, as desired. These kits should only be sent out when specifically requested to keep costs at a minimum. Promotional materials, such as postcards and bookmarks, can also help authors get the word out about their books. Such promotional materials can be especially useful at book events, book fairs, and signings.

Local vs. National

It’s important to know the market for your book, as well as what fits your personal style. Successful marketers think about their reading audience. A local or grassroots kind of marketing should start with your own network. You should also seek media coverage on local radio stations, TV stations, and in newspapers. Reach out to people you know with the hope of turning them into a kind of adjunct sales force. National marketing campaigns are about reaching millions at once. If your book has global significance and is newsworthy, it needs press. Using a fee-based service like PRWeb or PRNewswire is a way to reach a large audience at one fell swoop. Or, you might consider fee-based, national advertising through Facebook.


Finally, events can also be part of marketing plans. Most authors hold a book launch. A launch provides an opportunity to get the word out about your book. Many authors partner with non-profits and hold events in local bookstores and museums. Such events can generate media coverage and, in turn, create publicity for a book. Authors also participate in signings, conferences, book fairs, and non-profit benefits. All of these events can generate press for your book.

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