Step by Step Guide to Book Promotion
Before you begin promoting your book, you should make sure you have a final, edited copy to give out to reviewers. You may also need an ISBN number for some reviewers.
Step 1: Tell Your Friends
Estimated time: 15 minutes.
When: As soon as your book's page is up.
Send an email out to your friends and family telling them that you are now a published author, and include a link to the specific page on which your book is profiled. Make sure you encourage them to buy the book.
Step 2: Get a Web Site
Estimated time: 5 hours
When: As soon as your book is accepted for publication.
Get your own web site and put related information and links, including a link to your book's page (when its address is available.) Create it yourself or pay someone to build it for you. The best places to get a free page are Bigstep.com and freeservers.com. Both guide you through building your web site, assume you are new to web building and do not require you to use HTML. Bigstep may be more professionally oriented, and Freeservers is easier for beginners. See our web page for more information.
Step 3: Search Engine Submittal
Estimated time: 1 hour
When: After finishing your web page/site (usually a week before or after your book is available.
Submit your site to search engines. Ask similar sites if they will link to you if you place a link to their page on your site.
Step 4: Book Reviews
Estimated time: 1 hour.
When: As soon as you have the final, edited copy of your book.
Submit your book for book reviews. Be sure you have the current, edited draft of the book. If your book is submitted to ten reviewers, you will usually receive two reviews; thus, it's a good idea to send it to as many appropriate reviewers as possible. Make sure you don't send your book to a horror reviewer if your book is a romance, and follow their instructions for submitting it or it may be rejected. Submit to reviewers online and off (local papers are a good offline source.) You can find links at the bottom of this page to book reviewers.
Step 5: Press Releases
Estimated time: 2 hours.
When: As soon as your book is available.
Send out a press release or postcards about your publication. A press release should contain a catchy blurb (see your book's listing for an example), a brief (1 paragraph) synopsis of your book and a short bio describing yourself and your other work. You can also include on a separate paper a copy of the cover, if available. Places to send include media, local papers and bookstores.
Step 6: Business Cards
Print up business cards with the title of your book and your web address and/or or address of your book's page on them. Leave them everywhere and with everyone.
Step 7: Contests
Step 8: Chats
Reader and author-friendly websites often look for writers to chat about writing techniques, favorite books, etc. Read Chat your Way to Sales for more tips on this idea.
Step 9: Talks and Interviews
Schools, colleges, and libraries often hire published authors to give presentations. The good part is that people expect to pay speakers for entertaining them, so you may walk away with a small fee.
Step 10: Publish Stories and Articles
Consider writing some short stories or articles to submit to magazines and periodicals. Many will be more willing to review a novel from an author they recognize, and readers are more willing to buy a book by a writer they have already been exposed to.
Step 11: Join Writers Groups
Consider joining online writer's communities, workshops and mailing lists. You will have support and can talk with people who have had similar experiences, and some authors may be interested in purchasing your book. Have the link to your book appear in your signature when you post messages. Note that it's better not to advertise, but to participate in the discussions and let your signature do that work.
When Your Book is a Print on Demand Paperback
Step 12: Booksellers
Time: 8 hours (stretch it out over a week if you prefer.)
When: Once your book is available as a paperback.
Go to booksellers in your area. Give them the press release and talk to them about your book, suggesting they carry it. You may also want to set up book signings at this time.
Step 13: Booksellers Pt. II
Have friends and family ask for your book by title and author in bookstores near them.
Sirius Authors: Keep us updated on your promotional efforts, particularly book signings and chats which we list on our site.
Boost Your Writing Sales, Part I and Boost Your Writing Sales, Part II by Lee Masterson.
Promotion Links - Reviewers - Contests - Tips - Author Links
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