Book marketing is one of a self-published author’s most important jobs. It can also be one of the most challenging.
To succeed, you need to find where your audiences are and create marketing materials that speak to them.
Strategies for Book Marketing
Book marketing today involves multiple platforms, from social media to podcasts. The right platforms and messaging will depend on your market.
Social media marketing is a powerful way for authors to connect with existing followers and find new readers. According to Search Engine Journal, around 84% of the U.S. population and almost 58% of the world’s population use social media regularly.
Most social media networks let you post for free or pay for advertising. Free posting, also called organic marketing, is most effective if you have an established audience of readers.
You can get that audience by building connections with other writers and readers. It also helps to pay for advertising.
The key is to choose the right platform and post content geared to your target audience.
Facebook is the best platform for your first paid ads. The cost of your ad will depend on many factors, but you will be able to set a spending limit, so you don’t go over budget.
Organic posting is also worthwhile on Facebook, especially if your audience is over 50. Younger demographics spend more time on Instagram and YouTube.
YouTube is a growing marketing channel and a go-to resource for readers, thanks to the BookTube community. BookTube features reviewers—”BookTubers”—reporting on other people’s books. Authors also use the space to promote their own books.
Use your own channel to read from your book or share news about your release. You can also reach out to BookTubers in your genre and ask them to review your book. Offering free copies goes a long way.
Like YouTube has BookTube, Instagram has the #bookstagram hashtag. Bookstagram attracts readers, authors, and reviewers who connect over favorite genres and their latest reads. It’s particularly popular among fans of the YA genres, but there are Bookstagram communities around most sub-genres.
As with BookTube, your best bet is to engage with your favorite creators and comment on their videos. Solicit reviews after you’ve formed relationships.
TikTok’s bookish community is called BookTok. It’s sent many books to the top of the best-seller list, particularly in the young adult genre.
If you write for teens and young adults, BookTok is a book marketing gem. Gain an audience by making your own videos and friending people who follow you. If they friend you back, you can message them and tell them about your book.
Twitter is a networking gem for authors. Start by creating a bio that includes a link to your book. If you’ve had a tweet that went viral or recently got publicity for your book, pin that tweet, so it’s the first thing people see.
Then, start sharing content you think your readers would enjoy. News and releases about your chosen genre are always good picks. Once you’ve offered some value, you can sprinkle in some news about your own book.
Blogging is an ideal marketing tool for authors because it involves doing what they do best — writing. If you have your own writing or literature blog, you can use it to share news about your book.
- Share book cover design concepts and ask for votes
- Post previews of the book’s interior formatting or title page
- Announce new reviews
- Offer promotions to loyal blog readers
You can also promote your book on other people’s blogs. Reach out to book bloggers you love. Offer to write a guest post or give an interview.
Authors who enjoy interviewing can get plenty of mileage out of podcasts. If you’re interested in starting your own podcast about books or writing, the launch of your first book is a good motivator.
For most authors, though, it’s easier and less time-intensive to get your book on existing podcasts. Start by searching for podcasts that review books in your genre or reach out to hosts of your favorite book podcasts.
If a podcaster interviews authors, let them know you’re available.
A press release lets publications and journalists know about your book. It attracts the attention of more prominent reviewers and can get you other kinds of media exposure, including:
- TV and radio interviews
- Magazine and newspaper coverage
- Speaking engagements
The quality of your press release matters. Publishers expect to see a certain structure, information, and style.
If you publish through Palmetto Publishing, you’ll have access to press release writing and distribution services. Palmetto has more than 780,000 media contacts and can share your book’s press release with up to 1,000 outlets.
Every author should have a website. It becomes the final destination for all of your online advertising, from social media ads to blog posts. Your author website should include:
- Your author bio
- A sales page with your published works
- Links to your other online pages, including socials
- A contact page
Your website is also the ideal place to host your blog. Readers will get easy access to your other content and, most importantly, your books.
How Much Does Book Marketing Cost?
There’s no magic number for the cost of a book marketing campaign. Palmetto has seen independent authors do it for less than $200, relying mostly on free options and networking. Other authors spend thousands on book editing, design, and marketing services to get truly impressive results.
You don’t have to break the bank but look for smart investments. Palmetto’s complete marketing package includes professionally written marketing copy and custom-designed materials for $1,899.
Choosing a Marketing Partner
Book marketing can be stressful if you do it alone. It’s hard to know if you’re choosing the right tactics or approaching audiences in a way that gets results.
As a leading self-publishing company, Palmetto offers professional marketing services as well as professional book design, editing, and printing. Reach out today and find out how we can help you find your audience.