Congratulations! You have a new book releasing soon! Now all you have to do is let people know when and where they can buy your precious creation that took months or maybe even years to complete. As the publishing house does its job of making the book available, it’s your job to get people to the stores or online retailers.
Following the basic marketing plan isn’t difficult as long as you have everything in order. Make a checklist, and as you complete each task, put a mark by it. That doesn’t mean you’re finished with the job. It just means you’ve addressed it. There may be some things you need to come back to, and you’ll know what they are when they come along.
1. Let your publisher’s marketing team know that you want to work with them. Coordinate schedules and make arrangements to share updates. Your marketing efforts should start and end with this dedicated person or group of people who are committed to your book’s success. If you have ideas, run them by the marketing team. Brainstorming is a good thing.
2. If you don’t already have a website, it’s time to have one built. It doesn’t have to be elaborate, but it does need to look professional. You’ll need to include some basic information such as who you are, a list of your books, where your books can be found, and anything else pertinent to your career that you would like your readers to know.
3. You’ll need a photo. Hire a professional if you can afford to. If not, enlist the help of a friend with the ability to create a high resolution head shot for your website, blog, social media pages, book cover, and business cards.
4. Update your author profiles on all the retail sites. This helps readers who want to know more about you and might be looking for your backlist.
5. Contact influential people to endorse and influence your book. Offer a free ARC (advanced reader copy), electronic version, or a bound copy of your manuscript. Make it clear that the recipient needs to read and review your book by a specific date. Ask the editor or marketing professional at your publishing house when they need the endorsements and get that information to your readers.
6. Have postcards and bookmarks made. Some publishers provide these materials, but if not, there are quite a few places that do them for a reasonable price. Check the prices at Vistaprint and Earthly Charms.
7. Let people know about your book. Send blurbs and announcements to the media, libraries, and bookstores in your area.
8. Schedule book signings and other author events for after the release date. If your book is seasonal, make sure you contact bookstores and libraries in plenty of time before the event.
9. Register your book with blog tours, review sites, and your professional organization database.
10. Always let the representative at your publishing house know what you are doing so you don’t duplicate efforts or interfere with their program.