If you’re an established writer like Stephen King or Ray Bradbury promoting your novel isn’t important. The publisher arranges book signings and guest appearances on all the talk shows, does social media and other types of paid promotions, and works with bookstores to feature your book.
But, if you’re not one of this rarified group, you’re gonna be pretty much on your own when it comes to promoting your book.
As someone who’s day job is marketing, especially through social media, it makes sense for my to help my fellow novelists (and other writers) by sharing my expertise.
Why you need to promote your book?
I belong to several writers’ meetup groups in my area and find that most published authors just aren’t making any money — or only a pittance for their work. And, most of these are better writers than some who publish through traditional publishers. In fact, several started with traditional publishers before learning they were giving away 90% of their royalties to publishers who did little or nothing to promote their works.
If you create a great story, it shouldn’t languish in boxes in your garage or on shelves at Amazon. People should read it.
And, if a publisher isn’t going to make that happen, why give them the lion’s share of the royalties?
The more I interact with writers and read their blogs, the more I discover writers fed up with traditional publishers who take months or years to bring your book to audiences, try to mangle your story with their own notions of what readers want, then take most of the profits.
In fact, I recently reviewed a rather nice book published by a traditional publisher. Despite that, the writer reached out to me, as an influencer, with a review copy of the book to help with promoting his book.
A second problem comes directly from the ease of self-publishing — everyone is doing it. And, there are some truly crappy writers out there. Vanity publishers abound, as well. These boutique publishers further crowd the bookselves (literal and virtual). With so many books out there, breaking through the clutter to reach potential readers is a Herculean challenge.
Promoting your book
I strongly encourage you to read and follow my companion blog over at Market Maven to learn more about marketing, in general, and digital marketing, in particular. There’s a particularly good guest post on that site that steps you through creating a website for your book, which is the foundation of all your efforts to promote your book.
Before you start on this road, recognize you need to spend a significant amount of time and some money for promoting your book.
Here’s a handy checklist I put together to help in promoting your book — it’s interactive if you click the “USE CHECKLIST” button.
I hope this advice helps. Let me know your thoughts and, as always, I’d love to help you with your writing in any way I can.
Some folks seek out readers with specific characteristics, some pay for expert readers, some join writing groups where they exchange reading for getting critiques. I use Beta readers who get a free review copy.
Join my Beta reader list and get your FREE copy of ‘Buried Ladies‘ here: