The book 1001 Ways to Market Your Books by John Kremer lists that many ways to market a book. There really are thousands of ways to market a book.
Not every marketing technique can or should be used for every book. However, there are a few marketing techniques that work well no matter the theme or genre of a book.
I have found that many independent authors fail to implement some easy techniques for marketing their books. The following three are just a sample of a larger list, but I think they are a good starting point.
1. Inviting Readers to Connect with You in Your Book
Inviting readers to connect with you is an effective way to build a loyal following of readers and fans. Don’t make it hard for your readers to find you. Give them information on how they can connect with you.
A quick perusal of the last 10 title nominated for the 2021 Christian Indie Awards—a good random sample—revealed the following:
- Only 5 out of these 10 books even listed the author website either on the back cover or in the “About the Author” section in the back of the book.
- Only one out of these 10 titles included an invitation for readers to connect with the author in the book. This author listed his social media profiles (Facebook, YouTube, and Instagram).
If you are not inviting readers to connect with you in your book, you are missing out on connecting with your audience and building a loyal following for repeat sales. A study by Goodreads found the following:
- 82% of authors that included an invitation to sign up for their newsletter or mailing list in their books see an increase in subscribers.
- 73% of authors who invite readers to follow them on social media see an increase of followers.
Don’t forget to invite readers to connect with you in your books. You can invite them to send feedback to your email address, you can invite them to sign up for your newsletter to hear about future books, and you can invite them to read your blog or follow you on social media. Be sure to include all the necessary URLs and links to make it easy for your readers.
2. Asking for Reviews in Your Book
Of those 10 nominated books, only one sported a request in the back of the book for readers to write a review of the book. This request was titled:
“If you’ve enjoyed this book, please tell others…”
Then it listed six ways that readers could do this including writing a review of the book on Amazon, sharing about the book on social media, and recommending the book to others via word-of-mouth.
Reviews help sell books. Many readers don’t think about writing a book review. Asking for a review is a great way to lead people to do what you want them to do.
The Goodreads study found that 84% of authors who ask in the back pages of their book for a review see an increase in reviews. So, ask for reviews in your book.
3. Collaborating with Other Authors
For the most part writing is a solitary activity. However, publishing a book and marketing a book are not. It takes a team to publish a book—editors, cover designers, book designers, printers, etc.
Marketing—while it can be done in solitude—is much more effective when done in collaborative efforts with others. Joining together with other authors with the same target audience reaps more exposure and sales. When authors piggy-back on each other’s audiences, the reach is augmented.
On rare occasions, I stumble across Christian indie authors engaging in collaboration and doing it well. Yet, your marketing reach is greatly enhanced when you collaborate with other authors in creative ways like:
- Creating boxed sets (a set of ebooks all sporting the same genre or theme)
- Conducting a newsletter swaps (promoting each other’s books to your respective email lists)
- Hosting combined author events (like a multi-author book signing)
If you are not using these three book marketing techniques, I encourage you to do so. In addition to helping you grow your audience, they won’t cost you a cent to implement.
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