“Content is fire, social media is gasoline.” -Jay Baer
When it comes to marketing your book, you have to do what every business does—get your product (that’s your book) in front of people who might be interested in reading it.
How you go about doing that will need to vary based on your audience.
In my lecture, Identifying and Connecting with Your Ideal Reader, I walk you through how to define your reader and think about where you can find them on the internet and in real life. (Click here to head to that lecture.)
Your marketing strategy for 25-35 year old women who are interested in yoga and aromatherapy will be slightly different than another author’s strategy who is targeting men between the ages of 55-65 years who are American classic car enthusiasts.
While the messages will differ depending on your ideal reader, you can still reach them in similar ways.
Here are a few ideas to market your book:
1. Book reviews on blogs
I guarantee that someone out there has a blog and is enthusiastic about your book’s genre. It’s up to you to track them down and make the connection.
Google your fingers off and create a list of potential book review bloggers and start contacting them with a friendly request for a book review.
You’ll need to send them either an e-book file or physical book for their review. You must give your book to reviewers freely and don’t even hint to them that you are looking for positive feedback.
According to Amazon’s book review policies, you cannot solicit positive reviews in exchange for a free copy of the book. Authors cannot incentivize or compensate reviewers in any form.
Ask the blogger to copy/paste a version of their review on your Amazon sales page and Goodreads when they are finished and ask them to let you know when the review on their site is live so you can share their blog post far and wide on your social media platforms.
If it helps sweeten the deal, you can offer one physical book for them to run a reader giveaway. They’ll run the promotion and send you the mailing address for you to ship once the giveaway ends.
As always, be genuine, be grateful, be nice and you’ll go far.
2. Let your voice be heard! Podcast interviews
Similar to your blogger outreach, you should repeat the same process for various podcasts. Hop on iTunes and start searching for pods related to your topic.
If you’re going to be a guest on podcasts, you need to know a few things:
1. Get a decent microphone. Sure, you can do it with your ear buds, but really, a nice microphone makes a huge difference and it’s not that expensive.
I use the Blue Yeti Microphone and I got it at a discount during a Black Friday sale. Get the foam filter that goes over the head so we don’t hear every spittle and click. Your listeners will thank you for spending an extra $7-$9 on your equipment.
If you find yourself on more than two podcasts, it’s time to invest in a microphone. Who knows? Maybe you’ll start your own podcast…storytelling in the author’s own voice is always nice to hear.
Whenever preparing for an interview, remember to relax. It’s just a conversation. Prepare some talking points around why you created the book, your inspiration, and what you want readers to take away from your book and let the words flow.
The more you do, the better you will be at interviews so do some mock interviews to calm your nerves.
3. Take ALL of the pictures. Share on Instagram
Someone who does this really well is Lola Åkerström who created an Instagram account for her book, Lagom.
Readers send her pictures of her book in their house and she reposts them on her Instagram account.
The end result: a stunning display of creativity and engagement with her readers around the world.
Seriously, follow her and do one better, buy her book here.
4. Put things in motion with a moving gif or video of your book
Want a high-quality image or video of someone reading your book but you don’t have any models around?
You can head to websites like Placeit.net and create a mockup of your book.
This can turn into a rabbit hole so don’t get lost. Get in and get out!
Here’s an example of a one that I tested out.
Buuuut, if you want to DIY it, which you might, you can create your own by animating your own book cover images.
Here’s an example of what I did for my Knocked Up Abroad books. You can see it on my homepage here.
Steps (super easy and free):
1. Take some flat lay pictures of your book(s)
2. Make the scene somewhat interesting
3. Make slight changes between snaps
4. Animate them using iMovie OR do what I did and create an animated slideshow using the Elementor WordPress plugin on your site.
5. Join a few marketing groups
There are TONS of other ideas for marketing your book—this is only scratching the surface.
For more ideas, I recommend reading Book Marketing Made Simple by Karen Williams and joining marketing groups on Facebook.
Marketing Across the World if you’re looking to connect with international entrepreneurs.
I’m in both groups, so come in and say helloooo.
6. Blog in your own words
This one is the most obvious but I almost forgot to mention that you should be blogging and continuing to put your ideas out there.
Add a link to your book at the bottom of every blog or in the sidebar widget of your site to encourage your readers to read more.
Put the link to your book everywhere. Make it easy for readers to find you.
Okay! That’s it for me. If you have any questions, let me know in the comments. I’ve also provided a video below for some more tips and advice.