The sounds of an old hymn resonated in my ears. Standing behind me in line for dinner at a writer’s conference I recently presented at, a gentleman was singing a lovely hymn.
When he finished singing, this man told me that he had been listening to a CD he had recently purchased that featured hymns. He went on to tell me that the same musician who had produced the CD has also recently written a devotional book using the old well-known hymns.
When I inquired after the book, he told me the title and the author. This brought a smile to my face. The very book he was talking about was published by a member of Christian Indie Publishing Association (CIPA).
I love to hear people mention books that are published by Members of the Association. It reminds me that the books produced by small publishers and independent authors are truly making an impact for Christ.
Sometimes I am amazed at how broad and far the reach is for these books. I shouldn’t be because I believe that producing a quality book and then marketing it is the key to successfully reaching an audience with your message. Yet, it still amazes and thrills me when I hear people mention books that were published by ordinary people striving to do what God has called them to do.
Is this the desire of your heart? Do you want your book to impact people?
If your answer is yes, then know that it takes more than just writing and publishing a book. If you want your book to have an impact, then it must also meet the following five criterion.
- Be well-written and professionally edited so that it is free of grammatical errors.
- Have a strong, clear title.
- Sport a professional cover design that fits the genre of your book.
- Carry a clear description that answers that “WIIFM” question.
- Execution of a robust marketing plan.
Over a million self-published books are published annually. Some studies suggest that less than ten percent of those books sell enough copies to be considered profitable. Your book is competing with millions of other books.
If you want your book to stand out and make an impact on people, then first and foremost, your book must be professionally packaged (well-written and designed). After that, you must engage in marketing your book so that your target audience knows that it exists and provides them with something they need or are seeking.
If you are unsure how to go about creating a robust marketing plan, I encourage you to either read my book, Your Guide to Marketing Christian Books, or to join Christian Indie Publishing Association and download our “Book Launch Marketing Checklist” that walks you through book marketing activities to engage in starting before your book is published and continuing after your book is in print.
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Photo courtesy of Zach Smith.