These days it seems like everyone’s book marketing budget is a little tighter. If you’re feeling the pinch, or if you’re just looking for some great free stuff to do on your own, here are some tips that can help keep you on track to promote your book.
- Buy your domain name as soon as you have a title for your book. You can get domain names for as little as $12.95. Tip: When buying a domain, always try to get a .com and stay away from hyphens, i.e. penny-sansevieri.com – surfers rarely remember to insert hyphens. You should also consider using your keywords in your domain because it’ll help you rank better. Social media is great, but don’t use your Facebook or Twitter pages as your “website” – you should own your domain and have a site. Period. For more tips on how to create a great website, check out this article.
- Super Fans: In order to grow your Super Fans, you must first find ways to engage them. Why not start by including a letter to fans in the back of your book? This letter would invite them to post a review or contact you so you can build your mailing list.
- Start a Facebook Fan page: Fan Pages are much better than a personal profile for marketing because they’re searchable in Google.
- VIP Fans: If you’re ready to ramp up your fans (and Super Fans) then consider creating a VIP group with fan exclusives like bonus content, early access to books and prizes. You can create these groups on Facebook!
- Set up an event at your neighborhood bookstore: If your bookstore isn’t open to doing an event, why not consider doing events in other places – like a local Starbucks, locally-owned restaurants, pubs, etc.?
- It’s all about content these days, so why not create a calendar for content? Often if you aren’t sure what to write, or when, a content calendar will keep you on track. You can plan the calendar around your free time (though you should blog weekly), and around holidays or events that may tie into your book. Then, while you’re at it, brainstorm content ideas and start a content folder that you can always refer back to when you aren’t feeling “inspired” to write anything.
- Get yourself on Goodreads and start gathering friends and building your profile there.
- Check out other, similar authors online and see if you can do some networking. Not sure how to do this? Check out this blog.
- Do some radio research and pitch yourself to at least five new stations this week. Here’s a great place to find radio stations.
- Ready to get some business cards? Head on over to Vistaprint.com. The cards are free if you let them put their logo on the back, but if you don’t, they’re still really inexpensive. Leave your business card, bookmark, or book flyer wherever you go.
- Put together your marketing plan. Seriously, do this. If you don’t know where you’re going, any destination will do. If you don’t feel like doing an entire “plan,” then pick ten things you want to do this month to promote your book.
- Plan a Goodreads giveaway. Contests are a great way to promote your book. Make sure to share this content with your followers on your site and your social media accounts! Not sure where to start? Look here for some great tips.
- Time to get yourself onto Wattpad. Never heard of Wattpad? It’s a place where you can share your content, share chapters from your published book, short stories…whatever you want. It’s a fantastic way to build fans and get feedback on your work!
- Send thank you notes to people who have been helpful to you. In an age of “everything email,” a handwritten thank you note speaks volumes.
- Send your book out to at least ten book reviewers this week. Here are some tips to create a pitch that will get your book reviewed.
- Do a quick Internet search for local writers’ conferences or book festivals you can attend. Here are 9 things you can do to make your next writers’ conference awesome.
- To save time, check out different social media management sites. Hootsuite has a free option that will help manage your social media posting for you. If you need to elevate your social media presence, check out our quiz to see which sites are the best fit for you.
- Ready to pitch bloggers? Excellent! Start by doing a search for the right ones on Google. You can also head over here and plug in your search term to find the top blogs in your market.
- Enhance your Amazon Author Central Page by linking to your blog, Twitter feed, or adding a video if you have one. Here is a good place to look for an idea of how to begin.
- Plan your free eBook promotion. If you’re on KDP (Kindle Direct Publishing), drop your price to zero for one to three days. You’ll want to schedule this a week or so in advance, then head on over to sites where you can list your freebie. There are tons of them, but here are a couple to get you started: igniteyourbook.com, ebookswag.com, and our “Your eBook Deal How-To Guide!” post.
- Start your own email newsletter; it’s a great way to keep readers, friends and family updated and informed on your success. Check out our blog post on why you need a newsletter and how it can help you get more sales!
- Develop a set of questions or discussion topics that book clubs or online book clubs can use for your book, and post them on your website for handy downloads. Make sure to get folks to sign up for your newsletter before giving away these discussion questions though!
- See if you can get your friends to host a “book party” in their home. You come in and discuss your book and voilà, a captive audience! You can host it via Skype or on Google Hangouts and then promote it on your social media sites as well.
- Find some catalogs you think your book would be perfect for and then submit your packet to them for consideration. If you’re unsure of what catalogs might work for you, head on over to catalogs.com and peruse their list.
- Go around to your local retailers and see if they’ll carry your book; even if it’s on consignment, it might be worth it! Don’t just offer this at bookstores either. See if your community dry cleaners, gift shops, or restaurants will take it. Often, neighborhood establishments are very supportive of their local authors!
These book promotion ideas should keep you busy until part two posts the remaining 25! Happy promoting!