Confused about book marketing? Many authors are. This means that they fail to do any marketing at all, and inevitably, without visibility, their book sales are disappointing.
Let’s make sense of book marketing — by making choices, creating a quick message and plan, and then using our ten minutes a day, every day. The minutes add up. At ten minutes daily, you’re spending 50 minutes a week (five days) on ensuring that you give your book the opportunity it deserves to be seen by its audience.
Book marketing: your options. Will you be spending time, or money?
For effective marketing, make a choice. Will you be spending time, or money? While “free” options like social media marketing are tempting, you’ll need to invest time for your marketing to be seen.
Alternatively, you can save time, and spend money on marketing. Another temptation. However, there’s also a challenge: with paid marketing, you can lose more than you gain. You have no way of knowing, before you test a paid marketing solution, whether it will work for you. Also, you need to make sure that you’re not spending more on your advertising than you could ever hope to recoup.
Let’s look at the two methods.
“Free” marketing on social media: focus on engagement, and then promotion
I love free marketing on social media because I enjoy blogging, and I enjoy Pinterest, Twitter and Facebook.
Considering free social media marketing?
Here’s what’s important:
- Engagement: social media is social, so you need to spend time on your chosen platform engaging and making friends;
- Promotion: you need to ensure that you have a message for your marketing, and you stick to that message. (This can be a real challenge.)
Paid marketing: decide where you’ll spend your marketing dollars
Advertising is easy. You create your message, and pay your money. Then you get readers — wonderful! Unfortunately, it’s not that simple. Authors opt for advertising in order to save time, but while advertising may not eat up as much time as free options, it takes time daily.
You need learn how your advertising venue works: Google AdWords, Facebook advertising, Bookbub or another marketing option. Next, you need to be prepared to lose money while you fine-tune your advertising, so that you know you’re reaching the right audience for you.
To get the best results from advertising:
- Create great collateral (marketing materials, like images, text, and videos);
- Watch and track your advertising, Be very sure that your advertising spend for reader-acquisition is not too high.
Plan your campaign: create your message, and stick to it: avoid confusing readers
You’ve chosen your marketing options, free advertising, or paid advertising, or a mix of the two.
Your next step is to create a marking campaign, with ONE message. You create a single message, because it’s easy to confuse readers. They need to see your message several times before they act.
For most authors, the most important message is: “join my mailing list”.
It’s essential to develop a mailing list. From Marie Force’s blog post on her indie author survey:
Newsletters were ranked highest as the most important marketing tool for indie careers, followed by Kindle Unlimited and Facebook ads. Respondents named quite a few other marketing tools they found helpful, including writing blogs and participating in giveaways and other promotions, author events and ads in smaller venues.
Create your marketing collateral, remembering to stay on message
You’ve decided on your book marketing message.
Your next step is to create your marketing materials.
If you’re promoting your mailing list (it’s essential), you’ll need to create an offering to encourage readers to join your list. This can be a free ebook, a simple online course — something which will be appealing to your readers.
In addition to creating your enticement, you need to get an account with a mailing list company. (Many authors like MailChimp.)
Once you’ve got an account, it’s time to create a signup page. You can deliver your freebie as an attachment to your welcome message to subscribers.
Ten minutes a day to book marketing success
You’ve done the hard work of making decisions. Now it’s time to schedule your ten minutes a day.
Tip: DO schedule your marketing. Otherwise, you’ll forget. Remember that your minutes add up. So do missed days, sadly. 🙂
“It’s not working…” — yes it is, but it takes time
In my day job as a marketer, I hear “it’s not working” constantly.
Marketing takes time. Remember that your audience needs to see your message several times. Nothing happens overnight. Stick with your schedule. Celebrate each small win. Starting from zero is always a challenge, but everything you do has an effect, as you’ll soon discover.
Ten minutes a day leads to book marketing success. 🙂