One of my clients emailed me bright and early this morning, excited about his new book which we are just launching. He is an expert in his field, yet he has not launched a book before. He was looking for ideas to do some extra promotion himself. I found myself typing up my ten top tips and thought it would be worth sharing those with everyone else. You may have heard some, most or even all of these before. And there are definitely many other things not on this list that you can do to launch a book. These are just my top tips, and I welcome more ideas and comments. Hopefully there is at least a kernel of an idea here which could help you sell more books. Have a wonderful day and a successful month ahead.
1. Get a PR strategy together well before the launch if possible. Either use the services of a PR company or put a plan together yourself. If your publisher offers reasonable PR, work with them to ensure you get what you want and need. Someone needs to contacting key media people – journalists, editors and bloggers who write about your topic. Look for relevant magazines, websites and groups/clubs/forums. The more the merrier. I’m always surprised when people skimp on review copies. Dan Poynter and I suggest in our Turning Experts into Published Authors seminars, that you have hundreds of review copies available and get them into the right hands. If you are doing this yourself, simply contact the editors and journalists directly, speak passionately and briefly about the importance of the book, and ask if they would like a review copy. Do not send books ‘blind’, i.e. without confirming people actually want one. Make sure to include a covering note with every copy, with your press kit or at least the key points about the book, and state that you are happy to be interviewed.
2. Have a book website, even a simple one. The minimum content is a good blurb or sales copy about the book, a nice high-resolution front cover, testimonials and reviews and, of course, a link to BUY the book. Ensure you can fulfil orders quickly; if not, then link your BUY button through to Amazon or another site that can automatically send books out when ordered.
3. Create a promotional video, put it on YouTube, then create a short link to the video
4. Blog about the book, including the short link
5. Post status updates about the new blog post on Twitter, Facebook, Ecademy and LinkedIn
6. Remember to update your own newsletter list, with exciting copy about the book launch
7. Get flyers or postcards done with the book cover, sales blurb and testimonials and ordering/purchasing information.
8. Then start attending local networking events, *always* having at least one copy of the book with you and 50-100 postcards. At the end of your 40/60 seconds, ask who would really like a copy of the book. Then pass a free copy to the first or most eager person with their hand up. The rest get postcards and you can ask them to spread the word as well.
9. Be willing to give plenty of copies away, as it always pays off at some point. Anyone who gets a free copy should blog/tweet about the book and give you an Amazon review in return.
10. Remember to update your website and blog regularly! I would suggest you do this at least weekly at the beginning, and include new testimonials and reviews, new videos, special offers and promotions.
If you want more specific help, there are some great services available from some excellent book marketing and PR people. There are a few that I recommend regularly with confidence, so please contact me if you would like to be referred.
Best of luck with your book launch. It is a very special milestone which you should be proud of. Most people never even start their books, much less finish them (trust me, I speak to hundreds of aspiring authors each month).
I look forward to hearing about all your success!