Are You Relentlessly Pursuing Opportunities?

“Fortune favors the bold.” ~Latin Proverb

“If opportunity doesn’t knock, build a door.” ~Milton Berle

These quotes speak to the need to pursue and seize opportunities. In marketing, an opportunity is simply a set of circumstances that makes it possible for you to promote your book and gain exposure for your works.

Successful authors don’t just grab every opportunity that comes their way to promote their books, they also relentlessly seek out opportunities for book promotion and exposure.

Are you relentlessly pursuing opportunities to promote your books? You can take the following eight actions to open doors of opportunity to promote your books.

  1. Follow and comment on blogs that speak to your target audience.

Join the conversation. Learn and network through becoming an active participant on blogs that your target audience tunes into to. Remember, commenting on blogs is not about “pushing” your books. It’s about connecting and providing information that is engaging and useful to others. Those who want more information will check out your website or books.

  1. Pursue openings for guest posts on blogs aimed at your target audience.

Most blogs feature guest posts. Using guests helps keep content fresh on a blog and also expands the exposure for the blog. You can query blogs on your topic that feature guest posts. Just be sure to offer a fresh article with great insight or tips.

  1. Chase media connections for interviews and more exposure.

Media need experts to interview. They need interesting stories to tell. Anytime news that ties into your books’ topics is breaking, you can pitch the media as an expert with useful information on the topic. You can also actively seek out guest interviews on television, radio, and podcasts. Christian Small Publishers Association (CSPA) understand the importance of media interviews for exposure. We offer our Members a list of radio and podcast shows that interview authors.

  1. Seek out individuals to review your book.

Reviews provide more exposure for your books. Seek out individuals to review your book. You can learn how to get more book reviews by watching the MCB University on-demand seminar Book Reviews: Tips for Getting More Reviews. The seminar is free for Members of Christian Small Publishers Association (CSPA); all others pay a small fee.

  1. Look for speaking opportunities.

Speaking engagements are a powerful marketing tool. The number one reason people purchase a book is because they know the author. The reader may know the author because they have read other books by the author, or they may know the author because they have heard the author speak. Start by finding local speaking engagements with your target audience. All sorts of venues seek speakers. Local rotary clubs, schools, retirement centers and churches are a great place to start.

  1. Submit articles for publication.

Magazines, journals and local newspapers are always seeking new content. You can use excerpts from your book as stand-alone articles to draw people into wanting more information. Most publications allow an author byline where you can list your book. The Christian Writers Market Guide is a great place to find Christian magazines seeking articles.

  1. Exhibit at a local craft or book fair.

Many local fairs offer booth or table rentals at an affordable price. You can exhibit at these events and showcase your books to local attendees. One place to find a listing of local festivals is at www.festivals.com.

  1. Hold an event or contest.

You can create your own opportunity for exposure both with readers and with the media by holding an event or a contest. Be creative. Then make sure you use the opportunity to grab as much publicity as you can.

Rarely do great opportunities fall into your lap. Rather, opportunities follow action. Little actions produce small opportunities while bold actions produce larger opportunities. Now go create and pursue opportunities for more exposure for your books.

Related Posts:
Are You Overlooking This Powerful Marketing Tool?
Market Your Christian Novel Like a Pro
Enhance Your Marketing With Bonus Content

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Photo courtesy of Mauro Paillex.

The Key to Selling Books

“I have just gotten my first magazine from the printer and I’m looking for places to sell it. Can you help me?”

If I had been given money every time someone has asked me this question, I would be rich.

I have said this many, many times before, and I will probably have to say this many times in the future. Listen up!

Marketing a publication (book, magazine, CD, DVD, etc.) begins—not when the publication is published and in your hands—but when you decide to compose or produce the publication.

In other words, don’t wait until you get your books from the printer to look for places to sell them. Know where you will sell your books before you get them printed.

Marketing starts at the conception of a project, not at the completion of a project.

Authors and publishers should be asking the following questions at the beginning of a project:

  1. Who is this book written for?
  2. What qualifications does the author have to write on this subject?
  3. How is this book different from other books on the same topic?
  4. What unique message does this book carry?
  5. Why will people care?
  6. How do we reach the people this book is written for?
  7. What is our marketing plan?

A marketing plan is basically a list of the ways you plan to market and advertise your book. If you are not sure what resources are out there, or if you need help getting ideas of how to market your Christian books, check out my book Your Guide to Marketing Books in the Christian Marketplace. It is full of ideas on how and where to market.

If you wait until your book is printed to start marketing, you have missed many opportunities to develop a platform to reach potential customers and have missed out on having a community of readers ready to purchase your book.

I believe that marketing is the hardest work involved of publishing books. However, it takes marketing to sell books.

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