How to Promote a New Book on a Budget
You've gotten your book published... Now what?
Most new authors are stuck instantly with a quandry; how do they market their newly published book when they don't have the added cash that will ultimately come from its royalties? Writing a book is hard; getting it published is even harder. Some authors don't even think about what comes next! So now that your book is available to reach the general public, what are you going to do to promote it?
Chances are that nobody's going to promote your work for you. There are some things that you can do to help yourself, and other things which you should not do under any circumstances. Be aware of what is and is not going to help your case, and plan your strategy accordingly.
Beware of Over-Promotion on Amazon
A few things to avoid...
- Don't create multiple Amazon accounts to promote/review your own book. This is something that I see occasionally and it's bad news. I'm sure that this is somehow tied to the recommendation that new forum owners create multiple accounts to create the illusion of activity. Just don't do it.
- Don't have all of your friends run over to leave a short review and five stars on Amazon. As above, the reader will pick up on this. These types of reviews only hurt you in the long run and will cause people to avoid your book and anything that you create in the future.
- Don't give up. I've known a lot of new authors who have become quickly frustrated when things don't go easily their way. You're going to have to be patient, and your book might not pay out at first.
- Don't take "no" personally. I'm going to make some recommendations that could potentially lead to rejection of your book. Don't take it personally; it has nothing to do with you and everything to do with the person you're approaching. Bear that in mind.
- Don't make book bloggers buy your book. Without naming names, my husband recently approached me to purchase a book written by a friend of his and review it. Given that it isn't in one of the genres that I review, I told him "no." Offer a copy of the book for review, please!
Make sure that you do the following
- Do request book reviews from book bloggers. Check out the Ning Group (linked previously) or do a search for book blogs or book reviewers. If you ask, most of us will also post a review for you at Amazon, or in any other location you wish the review to appear. We're a friendly bunch; don't be afraid of us! We're one of your best resources.
- Do have a plan in mind. You're going to make the most of your marketing if you have an idea of what you want to accomplish, and an idea of how you're going to get there. Your plan might be different than somebody else's; the plan has to work for you!
- Do be willing to promote yourself. This is imperative. If you aren't willing to speak highly of your own work, then nobody else is going to want to either. You need to be on Facebook, Twitter, and other social networks and work at promoting yourself there. Not just your book, but you as well.
- Do have confidence. If you're not confident in your work, why should I be confident enough to read it? To review it for you? You can't sell a product you don't believe in, so don't try!
- Do take opportunities for blog tours or interviews. These are opportunities for you to really shine. If a blogger offers you a guest post on their blog, it's in your best interests to take it. If they request additional copies to run a giveaway, it's better for you to provide them. Don't pass up golden opportunities.
When Approaching a Book Blogger...
Please be polite and remember that they're human do. Make sure to read their book review policies. It would be unwise, for example, to send someone who only reviews paranormal romance your historical fiction novel.
If you'd like to get a review of your book, you could always check out my book review policies (I'm sorry for the strange formatting. I've done my best to fix it and this policy has to go on my blog instead of on another platform, but Blogger is being persistently annoying in not allowing me the format I want! Argh!).