The “Big 5” publishing houses only publish a small fraction of the manuscripts they receive each year. What’s more, to become a best-selling author featured in The New York Times Best-Seller List, you need to sell between 5,000 and 10,000 copies. Fortunately, the digital age makes it easy for anyone who wants to write and self-publish a book to do it. In this article, we’re going to share the basics of self-publishing. Further, we’re going to share tips to promote your book. You should know that success as an author comes by getting your book into as many hands as possible. And that takes a lot of self-promotion, but it’s worth it!
Let’s say you finish with your manuscript, and you’re ready to go; now what? Well, you need to decide on a platform for self-publishing a book. Should you choose not to send your book to one of the Big 5 publishing houses who do the work for you, provided they agree to publish your book, you’ve got to decide on the publication platform. One of the best things you could do, which allows you to focus where you should focus, is to get a Self-Publish Kit package. Doing so will eliminate a lot of headaches, especially if you’re not a designer or technically savvy. Many authors, including those we’ve worked with, find it much easier to hire a one-stop self-publishing shop.
Nevertheless, if you decide you’ll self-publish and do everything yourself, you could still do it. It’s just going to take more time and effort. First, you’ll need to consider all the aspects of the book publishing work you’ll have to handle on your own. For instance, you’ll have to make sure you get a friend or someone to edit the book. Every book needs an editor to ensure flow and keep an eye out for errors, typos, and mistakes. You’ll also have to likely hire a designer to create a catchy book cover design. The designer, or you, will also have to make sure the book’s formatting and interior layout happen properly. Finally, you’ll also have to focus on promotion.
As an author, when you decide to self-publish a book, you also need to determine a distribution platform. One of the biggest, of course, is Amazon KDP. On the platform, you could choose to distribute ebooks or printed books. And, of course, your book gets featured in the global Amazon marketplace. However, Amazon’s not the only choice. You could also self-publish your book using other platforms such as Barnes & Noble Press or Apple Books. Also, consider using a publishing aggregator like Smashwords or Draft2Digital. They distribute to multiple channels.
As an author, you should be excited when you self-publish a book. But your challenge will become getting other people just as excited. It doesn’t matter what type of book you publish. Your aim should be to get the broadest possible audience reading it. So, we want to give you some of the best tips and ideas for promoting your self-published book.
The promotion for your book should begin even before you publish it! Some authors who have the best success with self-publishing and promotions begin marketing it way before publication. Therefore, develop a plan 3 or 6 months in advance to start telling your audience about the book. Tease it regularly and when you attain milestones (e.g., you finished it, the book cover’s created) share it with your audience. Once you have a publication date, let people know. The best thing you could do for yourself is to promote, promote, promote.
Depending on your goals, you should create a .com site for your book or your series of books. One of our authors made his own site for thought leadership aside from his brands. However, you may prefer to have your books appear on your business website. If so, that’s fine too. We suggest you develop a landing page so you could send traffic on social media to that page. Also, as you get interviews or reviews, it provides third parties an easy place to see your book directly.
Authors need to understand that to master digital marketing and promotions for their book, search engine optimization (SEO) and algorithms play a vital part in getting your book seen by others. In other words, if you publish on Amazon for your book to go up in the rankings, you need reviews. So, you can’t be shy about asking everyone you know who bought the book to submit a review for you. The more reviews you get, the higher your book’s going to go in the rankings.
There was a time when media was limited to prominent newspapers, radio, and television stations. However, that’s long since ended, and now there are countless podcasts, webinars, and media channels to promote your book. Reach out to the podcasts in your industry if your book happens to deal with business content for interviews. A simple search on Google will provide authors of nonfiction and fiction books with many places for interview guest requests. Of course, after every interview, make sure to promote it on your social media channels.
Join Goodreads as an author and create an author profile. Goodreads has more than 65 million worldwide on its network, and they’re passionate readers. That makes it an excellent platform to promote your self-published book. Moreover, as an author, you have the chance to ask for reviews and even have discussions about your book using features such as Ask the Author. Goodreads also includes marketing tools that could connect to your website and create buzz about your book.
Promotion for your self-published book is only limited to your creativity. There are many other things you could do. For example, you could ask your alma mater to feature your book in its bookstore. You could have giveaways that you promote on social media, and you could ask a small niche bookstore in your area to allow you to have a book signing and reading. So, go ahead and self-publish your book. The tips, correctly done, will get you on your way to success as a best-selling author!
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