One of the most successful business models in the world includes the practice of giving something away. This act of generosity allows people to relax and they may feel compelled to reciprocate the gesture. This model works great when promoting your work.
This article looks at great ways to leverage free copies of your books into new reviews, press coverage, social media popularity and more.
Give it away to reviewers.
Getting your book reviewed by multiple critics is an important step in promoting it.
Reviews tell those new readers whether they should give your books a chance. Giving the book away can leverage more media opportunities. Sending advanced reading copies of your work to reviewers is very helpful.
Time and money are two things everyone seems to be running short of these days. Getting a popular reviewer to both spend time and money on your first book can be a difficult process. (Not to mention being against the industry norm.)
A great way to help this process is to create an e-book. They are easy to give away, instantly deliverable, and free. Websites like Smashwords.com allow you to create coupons that you can email to any critic who agrees to write a review.
Give it to the local press.
For the same reasons you'd want to give a copy of your book to a critic, you'll want to include a copy for the local press. These smaller papers often have space to fill and a soft spot for the “local” theme.
Write up a press release and send it to a couple of your local media outlets. Get free business cards at VistaPrint.com, and deliver a copy of your book to their local office. You'd be surprised how effective face time can be.
Give it to your loyal online fans, followers, and readers.
Show the world and your readers how much you value them by giving away both print and e-versions of your book through an online contest. This will not only create buzz for your book but get people excited about reading it.
Some people might not want to wait for the results of a contest and just purchase their own copy because of the hype. Plus, after you choose a winner you can leverage the results on all you social media outlets like Twitter and Facebook.
Don't forget to give a copy or two to your local library.
Libraries in larger cities have submission guidelines for accepting new books. Sometimes that process is simplified when the book is a donation. Your focus should be on holding an attention-getting event at one of the libraries. The requests for the book will handle themselves. They'll ask you for it!
Generosity fosters reciprocity, so get out there and give.
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