Find about some of the basics of self-publishing. Learn about developing a book marketing plan, choosing a book distributor, and the book launch.
The number 1 thing self-published authors should do for their new book.
Get the book PROOFREAD!
Short List for Self-Publisher Marketing Plan
WEBSITE – if you don’t have a website you should create either an AUTHOR site or a BOOK site. At a minimum, the website should have a home page, about or author page, book page, and contact page.
BLOG – If you can, add a BLOG to the website and try posting something about the book at least once a month before the book is launched and once a week the week of the book launch.
GET THEIR EMAILS FOR YOUR LIST – Create an email newsletter account on MailChimp.com or another 3rd party email service and add a “join my newsletter” to announce the launch of your book. You can use the email list for other marketing opportunities as well.
GET REVIEWS – After the book is proofread, send a copy of it out to key people to get reviews that can be included in the book. Consider industry reviews, business reviews, genre fan review.
Ebook, Print-on-Demand, or Both?
I can’t imagine why anyone would choose one over the other when they could have both.
Choose Your Distribution Plan
There are many different options for distributing your books online. The goal is to get it into as many platforms as possible. But as Google is important to website visibility for searchers, Amazon is King of books and products.
So the simple approach is to sell on Amazon. It’s called KDP Amazon. KDP stands for Kindle Direct Publishing. www.kdp.amazon.com
Personally, I like the stringent ebook formatting that Smashwords.com requires and the fact they get books into an array of different companies like Barns and Noble. Then I move the formatted book to Amazon KDP and do the print-on-demand with Amazon as well.
Book Launch Marketing Plan
Develop some kind of marketing plan, even a super basic one for the week of the book launch:
If you were to publish your book with a publisher you would have to outline your marketing plan and prepare to purchase a large number of books. Publishers are very much interested in your “list” or your “audience”. Hence, a self-publisher should be preparing a similar plan.
Before the Book Launch
- Prepare Your List – gather a list of emails to send personalized emails or group emails via MailChimp.com Plan on sending the emails out a few each day starting on the day of the launch.
- Identify Social Opportunities – identify all your social media opportunities. At a minimum post your book on your social media accounts. Then see if you can coordinate with your family, friends, and key people to get them to like and “share” the posts on their network
- Advertising – if yyourbudget is small consider a low budget facebook “boost” campaign. ex: $25 for 5 days (starting on the day of your launch)
- In the News – Publish a paid press release ex: $99 for a PR on prweb.com
- Plan a launch party – Gather your support group, your industry, or anyone who is interested. Host it at a coffee shop or at the library.
- Host a Virtual Launch party – you can organize one on Facebook. Pick a date, time period, make a Facebook event invitation, and prepare some activities: a reading, a game or contest (related to you and your book), a giveaway, and even interviews with people.
The Book Launch and First Days After
Obviously, you want to sell books, but how will people find them. Amazon pays attention to a book’s popularity and ranks Books according to popularity. If you want to get your book in front of new readers the early days of the book launch is the best time to put maximum effort into the Amazon Best Seller chart.
- Try to get a number of people to your Amazon book every day for the first 7-days. They are paying a lot of attention to the activity on new launches for a short period of time.
- Execute all those marketing plans – start sending out those emails, posts on social media, launch the advertising campaign, and get that press release announcement about the book launch submitted.
- Add yourself as an author on Goodreads.com (Amazon owns them)
- Attend your Book Launch Party
- Host that Facebook Virtual Book Launch Party