Many authors often focus solely on the content creation process and fail to think of ways to market and sell their books. The thought process of marketing a book should commence as soon as a book idea is conceived so that you are ready to tap on opportunities when they present themselves.
Do not think of bookstores as the one and only channel that you can sell your book because it is often the most competitive channel. In fact, many bestselling authors are not publicly known because they have found their own direct channels to sell their books to their target readers.
Below are 12 suggestions on how you can maximise exposure for your book and increase your book sales:
- Find marketing partners. These could be organizations, associations or companies whose members or employees have an interest in your book. Strike a win-win partnership with them so that your book can be promoted to their members or employees either on their website, email, mailer insert etc. Give them an irresistible offer when they place bulk orders.
- Take pre-orders for your book at a special discounted price. You can create an online order form containing synopsis of the book, sample chapter, book cover design, etc. and send out the preorder link to people in your database.
- Conduct talks and seminars whereby you can sell your books to your target readers or include the book as part of a package.
- Send your book accompanied with an introduction letter to people who have influence and are likely to share about your book.
- Seek exposure through media, both online and offline. If no one is aware of the existence of your book, no one will buy it. Book reviews and author interviews are useful ways to get the word out. You can also contribute articles to the media but remember to include your book title in the credit line.
- Get yourself invited to present and speak at other people’s seminar or conferences. It is always easier to sell books to your audience after they get to know you.
- Create a website, blog, and set up social media channels to share with readers on the progress of the book and to interact with your readers when the book is published. Remember to include the blog address in your book. You can also offer a sample chapter for download.
- Attend relevant networking sessions where you can both expand your network and find opportunities to share about your book. Always remember to follow up with your contacts after the event.
- Give out name cards and/or bookmarks that contain your book cover design and your contact details.
- Organize a book launch cum book signing to create awareness. If it is difficult to organize a book launch on your own due to resource constraints, you can leverage on other people’s events too.
- Set up sales channels beyond bookstores like cafes, spas, hair salons, etc. Essentially, you need to identify places where your target readers will frequently hang out and make your book available. Again, think win-win so that everyone will benefit.
- Adopt a charity and donate a portion of your book sales to them. What goes around, comes around.
The above 12 ways are just some marketing ideas to get you started. The most important thing is to identify your target reader and find out ways that you can reach them. Unleash your imagination and I am sure you will be able to think of more ways! Share them with me when you do.