I get more questions from authors about book promotion than any other topic. And most of the questions come after the book is published. If these authors had read my book, Publish Your Book, before writing their book, they’d be much better prepared for the book promotion process.
They’d know how important it is to write the right book for the right audience. They’d know who their audience is, where they are, and how to approach them. They’d already have some marketing activities in mind and, perhaps, in the works. And if they’d followed up by reading Promote Your Book, they’d be way ahead of the game.
It’s true that most authors write the book first. I guess it seems logical to create the product before thinking about marketing it. Until you get to the place where you have a book and no idea what to do next. That’s when authors realize that maybe they put the cart before the horse. They feel absolutely lost. Some realize they’ve written a book that doesn’t have an audience or for which the audience is much smaller than they had hoped. Or they never even thought about readers while writing the book—they just wanted to get that book out of them and onto paper. I sometimes tell hopeful authors to go ahead and write the book they have in mind and throw it away, THEN write a book that is actually wanted or needed in the marketplace. But not before studying the publishing industry so they understand the challenges they’re facing and how to overcome them.
Book Marketing Tip
Here’s a book marketing tip that some of you are going to ignore. Unfortunately, we miss a great deal that could be of value to us because we don’t want to be bothered. This weekend, I bothered to open a promotional piece from another author. Woo-la, it was an invitation to follow her on her blog tour.
First, let me say that authors should take the time to support other authors at book signings, buy purchasing their books and leaving an Amazon review, by following their blog tours, by reading their blogs and commenting. It’s good business.
In this case, the author has a book similar to mine. The instinct of some authors would be to trash that promotional email. If I had, I would have missed out on some amazing promotional opportunities for myself. This author listed the blog sites she would visit during her tour. And guess what? These blog sites were mostly new to me AND they were blog sites related to my own series of books. So that one click I made to read this author’s promo material gave me a list of nearly a dozen potential resources I can use in promoting my own book.