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Sitting down and writing the story you’ve always wanted to tell is only the first step to becoming a rockstar author. Marketing it, promoting it, and generally just getting people to find your book may actually take a lot more work!
Many self-published authors struggle with this area because they often aren’t aware of just how business-savvy you have to be to get your book out there. It takes a lot of time, effort, and marketing skills, but the reward of having your book read and praised by readers all over the world is worth the work.
Need a jumpstart? Here are five ways that will help you promote and sell your self-published book.
1. Website with a .com Address
When it comes to promoting your book, having a strong, good-looking website that piques people’s interest in your book is key. Web design is, of course, very important, but another trick is to make sure that you get a good high-quality .com domain.
What you’ll find is that a .com domain will attract up to three times as much traffic as any other top-level domain, and you’ll want to do some proper SEO (search engine optimization) work on your website to make sure it shows up on the first page. Getting a .com site is a great first step to getting there.
2. Social Media
As anyone promoting anything is well aware, having a strong social media presence is a vital step when trying to get your name and/or product on the airwaves. But this means more than just posting the occasional link encouraging people to buy your book.
What you’ll need to do is engage with your subscribers and your audience through posts, videos, messages — any engaging content that people can interact with. For example, image links have a higher click-through rate than standard social media posts. Once you can make a strong connection with your audience, they will undoubtedly check out what you have to offer.
3. With Free, You Get What You Pay For
There are many great tools on the web that provide free services to can help you market your book. For example, MailChimp helps you send out a newsletter to a small number of people at no cost. Or when working on your book, you may ask friends or colleagues to edit it.
However, as interest in your book grows, you’ll want to expand your online presence, which means you’ll probably have to start paying for a better, more expansive mail service. And having a quality editor or proofreader will improve your work significantly and get your next book flying off the shelves.
When your foot is in the door and you have the resources to vamp up the business side of your book selling efforts, putting a bit more money towards self-promotion will go a long way.
4. Actually Judge a Book by Its Cover
We all know the saying, “don’t judge a book by its cover,” but this should be applied to life — not the literary world! A striking, appealing book cover is often the game-changer when readers are browsing and deciding what book they should spontaneously pick up. That’s why a great book cover design will do more to sell your book than you ever could!
A cover that looks like homemade PhotoShop will scream “amateur” and turn off potential buyers/readers. It’s always worth the investment in getting a professional cover created by a highly skilled artist! So forget how good you think your Microsoft Paint skills are and get a proper designer to create something spectacular for you!
5. Promote Affordably
While many of the above tips cost money, it’s important to know exactly where your money is going when you’re investing in your book. A little can go a long way, therefore, you should always investigate what promotion options are available to you.
For example, there are plenty of great value promotions out there that will get you a great bang for your buck. Facebook Ads and Google AdWords are always helpful, but make sure these forms of advertisements fit within your budget before you take the plunge. Don’t stretch your wallet too thin, but you should be prepared to spend money to promote your book.
In the end, if your self-published book is great content, it will get to a point where it promotes itself!