All authors should become skilled promoters
You’ve spent many years building your idea, putting it on paper and producing an actual book. But your job is not done! Now, you, the author, have to become the promoter of your book. You need to market yourself as an author. You need to build a brand and manage your book like it’s your business.
In the golden age of technology, authoring a book has become much more than just churning out ideas on pages. Suddenly, you have access to several of the tools and resources that you would need to finalise production and to promote your work. In fact, even if you authored a book that was published by a known publishing house, they still might only do a limited amount of promotion around the book. The onus is still on you to take it as far as it can go. It’s time to put your writer cap away, and think like a promoter!
“Writing a book without promoting it is like waving to someone in a dark room. You know what have you done but nobody else does.”
– Madi Preda, Author of How to Promote and Market Your Book
Five cool ways to promote your book
1. Become a social media guru
You may have given little regard to social media up to now, but it’s time to embrace its benefits. Social media has the unique ability to close the distance between you, the author, and your audience. It immediately increases your reach given that Facebook has 2.7 billion active users at present. It is self-explanatory that an author website is necessary, but usually your website’s credibility and authority will be lacking in the eyes of Google. Leverage these assets on social media… ever notice that a person or company’s Facebook or LinkedIn page ranks higher in Google search than their actual website? It’s easier to rank at the top of the list through social media pages. It’s also a quick and fairly easy way to access a live audience with content that sparks engagement.
2. Turn your book into a movie
No, it’s not an easy feat to get a movie deal with your book, but you can have fun with making your book look like a movie. Make a book trailer! It is only human for people to engage more readily with video content than with written content. We tend to be lazy readers from the get-go and will only invest our time in a book that is going to be worth the effort. But, it’s always easy and fun to watch three-minute videos on YouTube. Author Tim Ferris (The 4-Hour Work Week) created a viral trend in book promotion when he launched a short 1-minute book trailer that packed a mean punch. This is not a promotional video shot from your living room. This is an epic commercial that captivates viewers. It’s an investment in good-quality production value, but it pays off. Ferris has over 700 000 YouTube subscribers with over a million views on his respective book trailers.
3. Blog your way to the top
If you’re a first-time author, you have to be your own biggest fan. Be inspired by your book to write content that will move your audience enough to purchase your book. Blog posts and articles are more accessible to your audience than hefty and dense books. Articles that communicate themes and explore ideas from your book are quicker reads that are freely available online. These should not be flat-out promotional pieces, but high-quality articles that encourage engagement. Your audience can click ahead and read your content at any time. Use your author site to add a blog page and blog away. Also, submit articles to popular sites, like Medium. If your article is accepted, it, and by extension your book, will catch more eyes as you access an existing reader community, and you may make some money from it.
4. Talk to your audience
Don’t be afraid to promote yourself. Your audience wants to get to know you. Record a video where you discuss a prominent part, a central idea or interesting titbit about your book. Post it on your website and your social media. If you’ve created that book trailer, create a YouTube account with it and populate it with video content. Video is a super effective way to become more personal with your people. It’s also content that is easily digestible and generally more fun. You don’t have to stage a movie set for this one. Sit down in your study, switch on your webcam and chat away! Just make sure that your videos are short and punchy.
5. Let your reviews promote your book for you
Currently, in the time of the e- and audio book, your book should be listed online on Amazon. This provides easy access to your buyers and avoids you having to persuade book stockists to see what you see in your book, unless of course you want to. You can easily cut out the middle man with Amazon, but once you’re there, you better make it work for you. The most effective way to promote your book on Amazon is through book reviews. Amazon has a nifty list of top customer reviewers – people who basically make a living out of reviewing books. Find plenty of keen reviewers who like reading your book’s genre and gift them a copy to review. Even simpler (with a potentially better pay-off), get in touch with your immediate community to support you by writing reviews on Amazon. You already have fans… supportive family members, friends and colleagues who will go the extra mile for you and your book. Give them a book and ask for a favour.
Book promotion may seem like a daunting undertaking for any author, but rest assured, it can be an exciting adventure that will let your book reach its full potential. There are many more promotional avenues to access than what’s listed above, and they should be specific to your book and brand. However, these show that there are fun, effective and accessible ways to gain some traction around your book. Put some strategies in place, see how much time and money you are able to invest and start putting your creation out there. Nuance wants to support you on your book promotion journey. Get in touch with us to learn more!