How to sell books becomes a writer’s first question after slaving away for months on that now perfect manuscript, that has recently become a self-published book and ebook. As most writers will agree I’m sure, writing is the easy part in today’s publishing market. Getting the book under potential reader’s noses is the difficult task.
Of course, you still have the choice of trying to find a literary agent and go down the traditional publishing path but even then, you may well find that you are still expected to do your bit when it comes to promoting your book. So in today’s market you really have to know how to get your book ‘out there’. Luckily, there are many options available that with a little effort can produce very good results.
It goes almost without saying that to start with, a Facebook Page, a Twitter account and a well written, designed and regularly updated blog are essential. These form the backbone of any book campaign and become the focal points that you need to guide your potential readers towards. Perhaps from your Amazon author page or Smashwords listing, Google profile, your email signature or possibly your business card. These are example avenues to your three campaign pillars.
There are many free tools and sites available for book promotion such as Goodreads, Bookbuzzr, Shelfari and a host of other specialised social media sites for books. Web directories can also be useful in gaining visitors to your blog as well as bookmarking services such as Stumbleupon, Digg and Linkedin.
While all of these should be used in promoting a book, they are very popular and it is easy for your book to get lost amongst thousands of others. So how do you get your book up near the top and have a chance of being seen? Easy, you pay. Almost without exception, major social media sites use paid advertising and/or sponsoring to keep them afloat. The most recent has been Twitter that now has paid for tweets. So to get to the top of the pecking order you’ll need to have a ‘truck load’ of money.
Because it is easy to get lost in the crowd and advertising is so expensive, I started a website some time ago in an effort to help a few fellow authors. After listing several books, the website started to take shape, and before long Whizbuzz started to gain some decent web traffic. It found a good following on Twitter as well. Just recently, the site has had a facelift, so take a look.
Whatever your budget there are many ways to promote your book but always remember to direct every avenue back to the three pillars of your social media book marketing. Facebook, Twitter and your blog.