This is the 3rd blog post in a sequence, and it is on book marketing FAQs. The prior 2 were on book writing FAQs and book publishing FAQs.
1. How do you run a book launch?
Answer: There are many different types of book launches. Some people have small cocktail parties, some have large events, some have book signings, some launch their books through social media and blogs, and some do discounted or free book campaigns with joint venture partners contributing free products and services to anyone who buys your book on the launch date. What kind of launch you should have depends on your objective for the launch, the preferences of your target audience, how much effort you want to put into it and how much money you want to spend on it. It’s a good idea to plan a launch about 3 months after you expect your book to be published. That way, if there are any snafus with the publishing, you won’t have to postpone the launch.
2. How much time should I plan to spend promoting my book?
Answer: The more you promote your book, the better the results will be from it. If you spend only a few hours promoting it, you won’t get much in the way of results. If you don’t have the time to spend promoting your book yourself, you may want to hire someone to promote it for you. Plan on spending at least 40 hours during the months leading up to your launch sending emails, posting on social media, preparing press releases, sending your book to reviewers, getting your book on your website, planning your book launch and other marketing tactics. Then figure on spending at least 10 hours/month after your book is published.
3. What are some of the best ways to market my book?
Answer: There are many book marketing tactics. In fact, there’s a book called 1001 Ways to Market Your Book, by John Kremer. You can conduct an email campaign, a social media campaign, a blog tour, a PR campaign, a free book campaign and a bestseller campaign, to name just a few. Some are free and relatively easy to do yourself, such as the first 3 listed, while others take more time and require more expertise to do right, and can cost a lot of money.
4. With so many different ways to market my book, how do I decide what actions to take?
Answer: Three keys to determining what actions to take when marketing your book are (1) know your objective – what do you want to achieve from your book? (2) Know where your audience is likely to be — are they on social media frequently? Do they read trade journals? Do they listen to certain radio stations, or follow particular blogs? And (3) identify tactics that align with keys (1) and (2) and fit your available resources.
5. Why would I want to run a free book campaign?
Answer: If your aim for your book is to get more people to appreciate your expertise, then running a free book campaign will get your book in front of more people. It also tends to create momentum that leads to book sales once the campaign is over. In addition, people who receive a free book tend to write more reviews. Getting good reviews can also help your book sales after the free book campaign is over. You can run a free eBook campaign through Amazon’s Kindle Select program if your book is exclusively on Amazon. You can run a free print book campaign on Goodreads.com.
6. How do I get book reviews?
Answer: This is a good question, as books that have a large number of good reviews do much better than books that have few reviews. Amazon has started denying the reviews of anyone they think might be in the author’s family or network. Still, start with your friends, family and colleagues and ask them to post reviews. Here are a few more tactics:
✔️ Include a sentence in your book requesting that the reader provide a review for you.
✔️ Do a search on Amazon for books like yours and try to reach out to anyone who reviewed those other books to see if they will review yours. Sometimes their contact information is available.
✔️ Try a free book campaign, which can lead to more reviews.
Do you have questions on book marketing that you want answered? Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and I’ll get back to you with my answer.