Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Early Book Marketing 101

Reaching Pony - by Lindsey Niles
The times they are a'changin'.  Used to be the writer mostly wrote - then sat back and waited for sales while others did the promotion.

Reality check time.  Not any more.

Now the best thing a writer (whether of fiction or non-fiction) can do is to begin promoting and marketing while you write your book.  It helps get you out there, find exposure, and build anticipation for the book that's coming.

Everything from mentioning your up-coming book in tweets, to posting at Facebook and whatever other social networking you do helps you and your creation to hit the ground running when the book is published.
Doesn't matter whether you're self-publishing or have a publisher for your book lined up.  You want to sell your books and you, as the writer, have to participate in the promotion. And, sales you generate early will help to promote the book more and contribute to more consistent and growing sales.

If you have an Ezine or a blog you might think of making a pre-publication offer to your subscribers. You could post a bit of a teaser - like a sample - a bit of your writing online to hook the readers into wanting more.

Set up a promotion folder and keep it close to hand.  Track the promotions you do and the ones you intend to do, when you intend to do them, and notate why.  As you progress through the book find places that might endorse or review the book. Be sure to schedule a time near release when you set up your bio page on Amazon.

Pre-publication, but near, set up a web site, or if your publisher had set one up for you, get the link and begin promoting it, posting it on you Twitter account, adding a signature line to your Emails so it's always there - add it to your blog or Ezine if you have those.

Many claim a great way to sell books online whether fiction or non-fiction is to write articles and link to your website or the website where the book is sold.  If you're wondering what to write about - anything that relates. You can write science articles for that SciFi novel, you can write helpful articles that parallel your non-fiction, handing out helpful information to your readers. Use your imagination.  Writing a romance? - then write articles on love and romantic get-aways. If you choose to do some of that as promotion, DON'T forget to add those links. Also, don't forget to get and use key words and phrases in the opening paragraph of the article that search engines will pick up. That'll lead to higher rankings in the search engines and more visitors.  Expand your keywords through visiting If you make the top 20 of search engine lists in the category you shoot for you'll enjoy much more traffic to your website.

Beyond those brief tips, keep in mind, you, the writer, must do promotional work if you want your books to sell and to sell well.  Don't wait until you've published to get your promotional work done. Anticipation is half the game. And actually, promoting as you go is easier.  Keep that promotion folder at your elbow and you'll be surprised what you'll slip into it and how it will mold and super charge  your efforts.


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