Smart Start Book Promotion for Self-Published Authors
Have you written a book with blood sweat and tears only to find it’s pretty tricky to sell your masterpiece? You’re not alone. Marketing your book is a hundred times harder than writing it.
Take heart – there are dozens of easy, affordable ways to market your book. It will take some time and effort, but you can work at your own pace and use the templates, examples and checklists to kick-start your marketing.
Writing about YOU is very difficult. What do you say in your bio? What blurb do you put on the cover of your book? What do you say on the back cover? How do you organise a book launch? How do you write a press release? How do you prepare for a media interview?
All of these questions – and much, much more - are answered in
New eBook for Self Published Authors - coming soon... How to PROMOTE YOUR BOOK on a shoe-string budget...by someone who did
This course is based on a Master Class conducted by Dawn Richards at the Queensland Writers' Centre.It consists of 6 workshops:
Workshop 1: Marketing Basics
- How to identify and reach your target markets
- Marketing secrets to connect you to your reader
- How to market a product (YOU and your book) in 6 easy steps
- Strategies to get your book out there
Workshop 2: Writing your Book Marketing Plan
- Why you need a Plan
- What goes into a Marketing Plan?
Workshop 3: Creating your Author Platform
- Writing your Author Bio
- Developing a website and/or blog
- Using social media marketing to build your list of followers
- Writing articles to build your credibility as a subject matter expert
- Writing ezine articles to build your credibility and direct traffic to your website
Workshop 4: Cranking up your publicity machine
- Writing media releases that get results
- How to get strong testimonials for marketing
- ‘Selling’ yourself and your book with book reviews and testimonials
- Organising a book launch with pizzazz!
- Being a star at media interviews
Workshop 5: Writing your own marketing materials
- Copywriting Basics – writing headlines and copy
- Write like a pro using 16 simple strategies
- Creating your Author Bio
- Writing simple ads and flyers
- Writing ‘Killer’ cover letters and proposals
Workshop 6: Developing Promotional Materials
- Simple Sales Kit for Booksellers
- Book Media Kit
- Materials for Book Fairs, Expos, Conferences, etc.
Marketing Tools for Authors:
- Book Marketing Plan
- Simple ads
- Simple flyers
- Media releases
- Ezine Articles
- Book Marketing Plan
- Author Platform Action Plan
- Media Releases
- Cover Letters
- Simple Ads and Flyers
- Newspaper and Magazine Articles
- Ezine Articles
- Book Reviews
- Expo Materials
- Sales Kit Materials
- Book Media Kit…and much more
- Handouts for Book Fairs and Seminars
Excerpt from Promote Your Book on a Shoe-String Budget..by someone who did: Writing media releases and getting them noticed
Media releases are one of the most powerful tools you can have in your marketing arsenal. The most common mistake people make when writing media releases is to write them like advertisements. Media releases are NOT advertisements - they need to be ‘news-worthy’, not ‘you-worthy’.
Writing a media release is similar in many ways to writing a flyer. The main difference is you are writing it for busy editors in the media, not your readers, so you need to adopt a more businesslike, structured approach.Once again, you need to educate yourself about what works and what doesn’t for your type of book. Go to Google and check out online media releases for books on Amazon or other online publishers. Check out writers’ centres to see how they write media releases until you find your own style.
1. Decide on the angle you will use:
First of all, you need to decide on the focus of your media release. What’s going to ‘grab’ the reader? A little controversy whets the appetite. Reporters and editors are the initial target market for your press release. Because they receive dozens of releases every day, you have to ‘grab’ their attention in just a few seconds…. or miss out.
2. Send your release to media that share the same target market as your book:
There’s no point writing a brilliant media release if you send it to the wrong media. Check The Australian Writer’s Marketplace (www.awmonline.com.au) for a comprehensive list of newspapers and magazines to ensure you have targeted organisations that share the same target markets as yourself. People change jobs frequently, so check the name and contact details of the current editor to ensure you ‘hit the target’.
If you were seeking publicity for a diet cookbook, which magazines would you target based on these publication profiles in The Australian Writer’s Marketplace?
Target readership: Mature women who are aspirational, young-at-heart,
educated, energetic, earning and experiencing change.
Topics of Interest: Reflective, topical, humorous, varied intelligent writing.
Target readership: Women of all ages.
Topics of interest: Short stories, gossip, TV news, general interest, cooking, fashion, beauty, health, astrology.
Obviously, Woman’s Day would be a better choice for your diet cook book.
3. Keep it short and to the point.
Usually, press releases are one to two pages in length.
4.Use a creative subject heading in your email.
Be careful of the wording to avoid your press release being automatically sent to the ‘spam’ box.
5. Include date instructions in your media release.
‘For Immediate Release’; ‘For Release Before or After (date)’
6. Use an attention-grabbing headline that asks a question or links to a current news item. You can also use statistics to make an impact in your headline.
Highlight the problem in the headline, build the pain in the intro and show the solution (WII-FM) in the copy that follows. See examples later.
- 7. Use color to highlight your headline in electronic press releases.
8. Write your headlines using upper and lower case, not CAPS.
Headlines in all caps look as if they are ‘shouting’ at the reader. It’s okay to have just one or two words in caps, but not the whole headline.
9. Make your headline as long as it needs to be to get your message across
Long headlines are okay to use, but they must get the reader involved.
- 10. Include a coloured graphic of your book jacket in the top left hand side of your media release.
11. Get your reader’s attention quickly
Readers decide if they want to read your copy based on the first paragraph. Remember AIDA (Attention + Interest + Desire + Action = Success). Use the first paragraph to answer all the important questions like ‘who’, ‘what’, ‘where’, ‘when’, ‘why’ and ‘how. Put important or new information first.
12. Start with an attention-grabbing intro
Start with a ‘grabber’ (startling fact, current news item, intriguing question, interesting anecdote, quote, or comparison). Involve the reader from the start through use of questions in your headline or body copy. Grab their attention and keep their interest while you build desire for your product or service.
13. Tell the editor why this story is of interest to the target market and back up your claims with facts and statistics.
What problems do you solve for your readers? Focus on benefits. Remember the Marketing Law of Specificity to build believability.
14. Include your full contact details (including after hours number) and offer further information or a review copy of your book on request.
15. Proofread every word of your media release. .. and then check it again!
Read it aloud. Give it to a friend who has good written skills to check. A media release with spelling or grammatical errors is the Kiss of Death for your book.