10 Things Your Friends Can do to Help you Sell More Books!

by | May 4, 2009 | Book Marketing Basics

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Successful authors are not loners. They get out and they talk about their book, they engage people, they market and they enlist the help of their team. In this case we’re talking about your friends. Getting friends (and family) to help you market your book might be the best thing you can do for your book’s success, but how you go about engaging their help is another matter entirely. Friends and family who haven’t spent any time in the book industry might be at a loss for what to do and because of that, might end up doing nothing. I find that when I talk to folks they tell me they’d love to help but have no clue where to start. So take this list and pass it out to everyone you know, this should give them a good jump-off point and could certainly help boost your sales!

1) Do you have promotional pieces? T-shirts, postcards, bookmarks, hats, magnets? Send some to all of your friends and ask them to pass them out or leave them in places where your readers might shop.

2) Send friends and family an announcement e-mail and ask if they’ll send it to ten (or more) people they know with their endorsement to buy the book or better yet, if they have a newsletter or mailing list, see if they’ll announce your book to their newsletter readers!

3) Have them go into their local bookstore and talk to the manager about inviting you in for a local event or better yet, see if they’ll stock your book.

4) Encourage everyone you know to buy a book.

5) Offer them a commission if they sell books on your behalf.

6) If you’re in town see if they’ll host a book signing at their home to introduce you to their network of friends.

7) Do they have businesses? See if they’ll consider selling your book at their offices. (And remember to give them a percentage!)

8) Do they have any connections with local radio, TV or print? Ask them if they’ll make a call for you to see about getting you on the air.

9) Tell your friends what you need. Make up a promotional “wish list” for example “I wish I could do an event at XYZ bookstore, or I wish I could get into XYZ magazine.” You never know who they might know. Remember the six degrees of separation rule. Often friends want to help but they don’t know what you need. Tell them.

10) Thank them for all of their efforts and keep them apprised of your success. Often we get so busy promoting our books that we forget to say thank you and since we hate to boast, we also forget to tell people all the wonderful things that have happened to us and our books. Tell them. They’ll be happy for you and it might inspire them to do more!

Penny C. Sansevieri, CEO and founder of Author Marketing Experts, Inc., is a best-selling author and internationally recognized book marketing and media relations expert. Her company is one of the leaders in the publishing industry and has developed some of the most cutting-edge book marketing campaigns. She is the author of five books, including Book to Bestseller which has been called the “road map to publishing success”. To learn more about her books or her promotional services, you can visit her web site at www.amarketingexpert.com. To subscribe to her free ezine, send a blank email to: mailto:subscribe@amarketingexpert.com


  1. Sheila Deeth

    Excellent practical advice as always. Thanks.

  2. Joyce Moyer Hostetter

    I’m hooked on all your practical advice. I really like the promotional wish list!

  3. Penny

    Hey Joyce, thank you! I’m so glad you like our blog… Good luck! Penny



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