Promote Your Book Online
Congratulations on your book publishing contract. Using my 5 low-cost ways to promote your book online will help you get started. There are thousands of unpublished writers looking to get signed so you have made a great accomplishment. Take a few moments to enjoy the victory before the real work begins, MARKETING YOUR BOOK. Because many books are now ebooks, it is imperative that you understand how to promote your book online.
Publishing houses are expecting more of their writers to promote, in these times of budget cuts, which means fewer resources and personnel to promote your book. Sales of books are tracked and low book sales of your first book can make it more difficult to get that second book contract. Marketing your book online offers a low-cost and effective way to get your book noticed and sold.
#1 CREATE A WEBSITE:
The cost of hosting a Website or blog has come down quite a bit in the last few years. Authors can find decent hosting services for less than $100 a year. There are also free sites that post Websites and blogs. Paying for hosting services has two key advantages over the free sites. You won’t have to worry about ads on paid sites.
These ads posted by free sites can detract from the content on your site. You can choose the URL of the site as long as someone else hasn’t chosen the name first. With free websites, you may have to deal with a long string of characters making your site hard for readers to find.
#2 SOCIALIZE ONLINE: Create a Facebook page and Twitter account about the book separate from your personal page or account. The Facebook and Twitter accounts can be linked so that when you tweet it appears on Facebook.
Make the book Facebook page all about the book. Look for communities and groups that might be interested in your book and socialize with them. The goal is to build an audience that is interested in your story.
CAUTION: Be careful when promoting your book online. You want to be subtle in this arena or you will offend people.
#3 CONNECT WITH ONLINE AFFILIATES:
As it gets closer to your book ‘s publication date make sure you have a way for people to pre-order and order the book. The two most popular online affiliates are Amazon [affiliate-program.amazon.com] and Barnes and Nobles [www.barnesandnobles.com/affiliate].
These affiliate link should be on the homepage of your website and the links to these pages included in all online communications about the book.
#4 POST A VIDEO OR PODCAST:
Authors can inexpensively video themselves reading from key excerpts from the book and post that online. Readers are curious about the author and posting a video can help establish your brand. An author may be asked to participate in a podcast (basically an online interview). Once the podcast is posted include a link to it on the publishers and author book Website and Facebook pages.
#5 REACH OUT TO WEBSITES AND BLOGS:
There are blogs and Websites on every possible subject and topic. These sites are often looking for content. Write an article in exchange for a mention of your book. Ask if the site reviews books or does sweepstakes (free book giveaway).
If they do send the designed reviewer an ARC [advanced reading copy). Set up a sweepstakes and include the link on your Website. Always ask the site owner if they can recommend any other online contacts that might be interested in your book.
Compiling contacts of related sites and blogs will help the author develop a list that can be used in an e-newsletter campaign. E-newsletters can be created easily in newer versions of Microsoft Word. In addition to information on your book and how to buy it, these e-newsletters should have content related to the book that will appeal to readers. Create a budget for book promotion.
TIP: When communicating with blogs, and Websites make sure you update your email signature to include the name and Web page link of the book.
These 5 low-cost ways to promote your book online, should begin soon after the book is slated for publication. It takes time to build a Website and community. Use online promotion for your titles and you will sell books. An author looking for a long career invests time and resources in promoting their titles independent of what the publisher is doing for the title.
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