How To Market A Book For Free

I’m an indie author, (with a marketing background) and keep finding posts on writer’s forums like ‘so I published my book, but only sold two copies in the last year, I don’t know why I bothered….’

Contrary to some people’s opinion that “when the book is written the work is done”, self-publishing isn’t just about writing, finding a good editor, choosing a publisher, getting an ISBN, formatting the book, designing the cover and choosing your price.  It also needs to about becoming your own agent, marketing department and cheerleader.  You can throw lots of money at marketing, but that might not help – what are you spending your money on?

So what do you need to know? This is my book marketing advice – marketing means publicising your name and work, it is everything you do that gets people’s interest.  Which can lead to them buying your work – it’s not selling, which is a different skill, and doesn’t just relate to books.

Imagine your ideal reader, so that you know who to aim at

When you have a detailed picture of who they are then we can work out where to find them. You are marketing yourself and your work NOT COLD CALLING (remember those annoying people who used to telephone while you were eating?).

Make sure you look appropriate for your genre and look approachable.  Ladies, no cleavage or pouty poses please – we know sex sells but we are marketing your book, not your personal wares.

Set up your social media profiles – don’t randomly add people you have no connection with, they are unlikely to be your ideal reader.

Make sure that your author website is everything that your readers would like it to be when they find you

Believe in yourself and your book, have you told everyone you ever met that you wrote a book? Think of this information as a pebble dropped into water making bigger and bigger ripples.  I’m not talking about becoming a bore, but if anyone asks what you’ve been doing lately, tell them you wrote a book… everyone should know.

And how to you keep in touch with your fans? a mailing list of course!

Finally, please remember why you started writing, if you were thinking you’d written an indie bestseller, and you’d make your millions, I admire your spirit, but you might want to adjust your reality.  Enjoy the process, including the marketing, or why do it?