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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?

How To Publish A Book

If you have been beavering away writing and are thinking how to publish, or getting help to publish a book, this is for you!

There are huge differences between Traditional, Self and Hybrid (often known previously as Vanity) publishing. From the process to be being accepted, the rights you sign over in the contract, the royalties you can expect; and the decisions you will get to make for your book.

Don't try to run before you can walk, writing and the process of getting your book 'out there' is a marathon, not a sprint. Rushing leads to sometimes very costly mistakes.

Learn about and consider which publishing route is right for the book you are writing now, because later books might suit a different kind of publishing, and that is ok.

Traditional publishing, this is what a lot of people think of when they talk about publishing. There is still some snobbishness that this is the best route. If you write in a sub genre, or do not want to sign over your rights, then it probably isn't.

Self-publishing, also called independent publishing lets you decide just about everything. Royalties can be significantly more, but that’s because it is a lot more work! average self-published author sells 250 books a year (and only 1000 in a books entire lifetime) and earns £800 a year. No-one is getting rich quick here, and I throw a big pinch of salt at anyone who jumps up and says they have with a first or second book.

Hybrid companies make money from their authors, not from selling books. If you know this and are ok with a bill that ranges from three to ten thousand pounds for getting that one book out, well ok then. My rule has been, and will always be, do not pay to publish!

If you would like to learn a lot more about each kind of publisher, to help you make a good decision there is masterclass for you.

How To Choose A Publisher | Eden Gruger