It’s been a long time since I’ve written about actual marketing strategies, so I wanted to find a topic I could cover in greater depth over the next several months:
Promoting a New Book Release!
This topic is relevant to my own publishing efforts, since I’m writing and aiming to publish a two-part novella later this year. I’ll start off with a summary of different book promotion strategies, and then deep-dive into each topic in later posts.
4 Strategies to Promote Your Book Release
As mentioned above, I’d like to use this post to introduce a few book promotion strategies from a high level, then review each in depth in later posts. The benefit here is that I’ll either be actively using these strategies as I write about them, or at least preparing to use them.
Here are the 4 book promotion strategies I’ll review, in no particular order:
- Online advertising
- Local book launch events
Those previous forays into online advertising gave me mixed results, mostly because I aimed for general attention towards my book and website.
This year, any online advertising I do will work in tandem with my other strategies. For instance, if I’m planning a book launch event in central Maryland, I’ll target my online ads to local readers, to get them to come to my launch event.
That’s just one avenue. This year, I’m going to look into a few other sources of online advertising for my book:
- Book reviews – I want to actively send out advanced digital copies of my story to get some early reviews in, on both Amazon and GoodReads.
- Blog tours – These have been popular among author-bloggers in recent years with some authors reaching out to dozens of other blogs to promote their books. I want to pick a handful of the great book blogs I currently follow and try to get my story featured on their sites.
- Social media I actually use – I previously had a Facebook page for Evening Satellite, but I hate Facebook. So where am I actually active? GoodReads, Wattpad, Imgur, Instagram. I’m already forming ideas about some promotion on those platforms.
- There are also hundreds of sites you can use to promote your book to readers: https://kindlepreneur.com/list-sites-promote-free-amazon-books/. I’ll look into at least a few of these as I build my plans.
This is entirely new territory for me, but I’d like to encourage new readers to find me by giving away my story. I’ve already looked into a few of the big names in this space, like GoodReads and BookBub, but I’m sure there are others.
The key to a giveaway is having a quantifiable goal to achieve. Do readers have to sign up for your newsletter to get a free copy of your book? Or do you just want to see reads and/or reviews on Kindle? Either way, you don’t want to just throw your book into the void to see who picks it up. Encourage potential readers to take an action.
I’ve already applied for one convention in September, and am waiting to hear back on if I’ve made the cut. I sold 12 books at AwesomeCon last year, so I’m excited to try to meet readers face to face.
Two weeks ago, I was a little bummed that I had to turn down AwesomeCon due to budget and other travel plans, but all of that might be out the window under current circumstances.
With Maryland (and much of the US) on full lockdown, who knows how direct marketing events like book launches or conventions will go this year. They might not go at all. But I’m holding out hope for summer and autumn.
One of my goals this year was to do at least one convention, so I’m actively working on making that happen.
Local Book Launch Events
One caveat I had given myself was that even if I didn’t have a slate of conventions to hit this year, I could still plan for some local events around my short story’s launch. Ideally, I can do both.
This is also new territory for me. I thought about organizing a book launch for The Warden of Everfeld: Memento in 2018, but honestly, I chickened out and never put serious effort into it.
There are a couple local book stores I want to check out this spring and summer — again, pandemic permitting. If I find one that I like and can meet the owners, I’ll talk to them about a book launch event, and perhaps even selling my stories on consignment.
This strategy depends heavily on when I publish in print. I plan to publish my two-part novella as separate short stories on Kindle first, then publish a combined volume in print. So the timing of that is still up in the air.
Lots of Potential Strategies
This process will be a learning experience for me, so I need to do some more research into each of the above book promotion strategies and provide some more detail. I’ll cover one strategy each month starting in April.
Once I’m actually preparing to publish my story, I’ll be sure to share which strategies I employ and how they work out for me. I may even add more to this list as they crop up. Stay tuned!