Do you ever feel like you’re running a marathon that has no ending? That’s marketing, and that’s why…I’ll just say it…Marketing is really, really hard!
Now that you’ve learned a little bit about marketing your book, you actually have to put it to use. Some people are planners, some people are not. I’d love to be a planner, I haven’t had time to come up with a plan just yet.
According to Guy Kawasaki, for four weeks after the release of a book, you’re allowed to go crazy sharing links on social media. After that, keep “buy links” to less than 10% of your posts on social media. The rest should be quality content and interacting with readers, which I know Rachel Thompson will agree with. So, you have four weeks to really pimp out your book. Ready…go!
Jump in with both feet. Marketing should really start months before your book ever hits bookstores or Amazon (some say 9 months), but better late than never right?
Here’s what I have been doing (what’s worked and what hasn’t):
I share links and fun promo pics on Facebook when I have five minutes to sit down. Results still pending 🙂
I’m not really sure what I’m doing on Twitter. I post links about my books, but more often, I post links about other people’s books and and interviews and reviews on my blog. Somehow I ended up with 2K followers and I’m trying to keep them interested.
I scout out blogs and websites who are willing to share news about my book releases. GoodKindles shares free and non-free titles. I found this GallyCat article that shared a bunch of sites to promote on (some paid, some free), and I’ve been testing a few out. I’ll share which worked and which didn’t as soon as I figure it out!
Free Booksy has so far gotten the best results when posting about a free book and having readers come back to buy the rest of the series. One promo with them several months ago is still showing results.
I’ve done several Goodreads Giveaways, but I can’t say I’ve noticed a significant change in sales by doing them. I’ve gotten a few reviews from these, but not many, even though Goodreads winners are encouraged to write a review.
I tested out the KDP Select program with two of my titles. I know some authors say they have had phenomenal results through this program, but I haven’t seen it. I get only a few borrows per month and the free book promotions don’t seem to drive further sales.
I’ve done several blog tours with various companies, and so far the only one that has produced noticeable increases in my sales has been with Turning The Page YA Blog Tours. I’ll continue to do blog tours with Angela, but I’m on the fence about trying anyone else.
Reviews are always a great way to promote. I’m all for using big and small blogs for reviews. I don’t think ignoring little blogs and only going after big bloggers is a good idea, because many of the smaller bloggers will not only review faster, if they like your book, they’ll continue to share your book in the long term.
Promote locally. Gail Wagner, Amanda Strong, and I have teamed up and spent some time giving presentations to the local schools. We’ve had a blast doing it, but we’ve also sold books! The teachers, librarians, and students want to read the books we tell them about, and it gets them excited about reading and writing, which is an even bigger bonus!
Wattpad. There is good and bad that comes with Wattpad. You’ll get nasty comments from teen readers with no manners, but you’ll also find some of your most loyal fans there who will tell everyone they know (literally) about your books. One way Wattpad has been a big help to me, aside from being a great place to connect with readers personally, is gaining reviews. Even when readers read your book for free on Wattpad, they still love having an “official copy” to keep and show off to their friends. When I finish posting a book (either permanent or temporary) I’ll offer to send ebooks to the first ten readers who write a review on Amazon or Goodreads. Also, I have several perma-free books posted on Wattpad, and if the readers want to continue the series, I’m happy to send them a free copy AFTER they write a review for the previous book. It’s really helped me boost my review numbers.
Connecting with other writers is probably one of the most beneficial things an author can do. We all know how hard it is to get our names out there and most are willing to help each other spread the word. Share their links and pins and posts, and they’ll share yours.
So, hang in there, keep marketing even if you feel like you haven’t got a clue. Most of us feel the exact same way. Eventually, you’ll find what works for you and your brand will start to take shape. What has worked or not worked for you? Feel free to share in the comments!