6 Easy Ways to Market Your Book
It’s been a whirlwind few months publishing your book – the writing is polished, the cover is a beauty, and the paper stock is textured creamy perfect – but now, you have to market your book. But how?
Marketing your book doesn’t need to be complicated or hard. In fact, with the right, targeted marketing strategy, you can cut down the time and money you spend on marketing and still promote your book successfully. We at Impressum love a good book marketing plan – it’s as satisfying to look at as a colour-coordinated bookshelf.
If you’re an author with Impressum, we’ll give you a handy guide on the best ways you can make sure you’re marketing your book well, but because we’re excited by what we do, we’re willing to share a bit here as well.
1. Figure out the target market of your book, and go to where they are
Not just physically, but digitally too. Think about what the audience of your book needs. How can you give it to them? Marketing your book means re-packaging the content of your book in ways that appeal to them, for example, Instagram stories, snappy social media posts, podcast interviews, digestible blog pieces, perhaps even TikTok or YouTube videos. You can also do magazine interviews or even Reddit interviews. It’s all about where your audience will be. For example, if you’ve written a financial management book for small businesses, you could connect with small business groups through tafes, colleges, local councils, Facebook groups, and professional networks.
2. Reviews help to market your book
Goodreads, Amazon, Better Reading, literary magazines, and even Instagram are all great ways to get reviews and market your book before it’s even released. In the months leading up to your publication date, make sure you send out review copies to a few close contacts (we all have that eager aunty who wants to shout from the rooftops how great you are) that will post a review online.
You should also aim to send out review copies to book reviewers. You can find some great reviewers on Instagram, by searching for top rating blogs in your field, or by reaching out to reviewers of books similar to yours. Expect about a quarter of those you approach to agree to write a review, so if you want 20 reviews by the time your book is out for one month, send out 80 copies (these don’t all have to be hardcopies – offer to send the ebook or PDF to save paper and cost).
You can even incentivise people to read your book and leave an honest review by using free giveaways, exclusive content not included in the book, or even a signed copy of your book or ticket to the launch.
3. Get testimonials from people your audience will know and trust
Impressum loves using endorsement quotes to market books because we know that, say, when we’re publishing a crime fiction book, a quote on the cover from Michael Robotham raving about how much he loves this book will mean potential readers are more likely to pick it up and trust how good it is. So if you know there’s an author or identity in your genre who will love your book – reach out to them and ask for a testimonial or quote. Be sure to say that a testimonial is different from a review that summarises the plot and characters – if you’re aiming for something on the front cover, it’s best to aim for one or two sentences maximum (many quotes are known to be single words). Start this one as early as you can, around 6 months before your book goes to print.
4. Guest blog posts
Appearing as a guest on book or writing blogs increases your network and your visibility to others, and therefore it’s a subtle yet easy way to market your book. Start with friends you know whose blogs are similar to the content and themes of your book. Your posts can be about writing – for example, how you wrote your memoir – or they could be content related to your book tailored to the blog’s audience – for example, if your book is about relationships, you might write a post for a parenting blog on how to maintain relationships with childless friends. Extrapolate the core themes of your book and write articles for different blogs pitched at their audiences.
Remember to connect with blogs that have audiences that would be perfect for your book. The bigger isn’t usually the better. It’s completely okay and normal if you don’t have access to a famous friend to promote your book on their blog. Instead, seek out niche blogs you know your book will do well in.
5. Author tours and talks
If you know your book will be in bookstores, travel to those stores (especially your local one) and introduce yourself, and request to sign copies of your book. This will give you a chance to chat with the bookseller and also take some Insta-worthy pics for social media. Organise talks at local libraries and bookstores around the themes of your book. Perhaps you wrote a historical fiction book, and can talk about the process of researching for fiction writing. Or perhaps you wrote a book about managing a small business, and can talk about some important aspects of your book to promote it. But make sure you leave listeners wanting to buy your book – don’t give it all away in your presentation!
6. Author website to market your book
Your website is like your digital business card. You can cite it at the end of your book, every guest blog post, and every author talk. It provides others a way to link to more information about you. You can host your own blog (but only do this if you can invest the time to keep it up and create content regularly). Build a list of subscribers you can email with updates about your events or reviews; include links to pre-order your book, and you can post reviews and endorsements about your book here, too (including your eager aunty!). We recommend hiring a website designer to get the most out of your website – our sister company Brugel Creative can help you create your own author website like this one.
Publishing your book is only the first step – marketing your book is just as important (because though she might want to, you shouldn’t let that eager aunty buy all your copies!). Try out some of our strategies, and let us know how you went! And remember, if you sign up as an author with Impressum, we’ll give a handy marketing guide tailored to you!