Marketing a new book is an exciting and oftentimes life-changing experience. Authors get to promote their writing, make new writer friends, and build a genuine community of readers.
Authors may also feel overwhelmed and self-conscious about whether or not they are marketing their book correctly to reach their target audience.
Here, learn five common mistakes that authors make when marketing their books–complete with tips and solutions to get it right!
Lack of a Social Media Presence
Have you ever Googled a business and found out that they didn’t even have a website? You want to get in touch or learn more about the company–but you’re unable to! So what happens? You move on!
As an author, published or not, you must have a digital footprint so that your potential audience can find you and engage with you online.
Also, readers like to get to know their favorite authors–and feel like they share a personal relationship. Readers love to learn about your writing process, book updates, and even what you are currently reading. Even if you aren’t actively promoting a book, make sure to stay active on social media because you aren’t just there to sell books. You are there to nurture an authentic audience of super fans!
Being on social media isn’t just to connect to readers and promote your brand. You can also use it to meet other authors in your genre for general support within the literary community.
Lastly, use writer’s groups to collaborate on projects! It’s very common for authors to work together to create an anthology based on a theme, a holiday, or even to support a charity. These anthologies are a great way to build your newsletter and get your writing in front of new readers.
No Author Newsletter
Think of your digital footprint as an online store. By having an author newsletter, you’ll create a direct line of communication to people who want to support you and your business. They can peek inside of the window or even walk inside, but what will make them come back or make a purchase? How will they know to pre-order your new book?
This is why you need their email. It’s very common for businesses to have an email list that they consistently nurture and build (regardless of their social media following), while also providing content that is of service.
To get started, research and choose an email marketing company. Some of the most popular ones are:
These are just a few options so feel free to look at other companies to find the right fit for you and learn more newsletter do’s and don’ts here.
Marketing Your Book Too Late
Announcing your book release too late or too close to your publication date can be detrimental to your campaign and book sales. Pre-orders are so important (more on that later!). Think of it like a rocket preparing for take-off: you need momentum and power to make that rocket soar into the stratosphere.
It’s the same situation with your book launch: if you don’t build up excitement on social media, through your newsletter, within your community, in the media, and with book events, then your book could flop. And it wouldn’t be because no one liked your book, but the fact that no one knew about it!
Choosing the Wrong Social Media Platform
With so many platforms to choose from, it’s a common mistake to put effort into one that might not reach your target audience.
There are a few platforms, like Facebook and TikTok, where your audience will be regardless of genre. Other platforms, like Youtube or Instagram, will require you to do a little market research before investing time to build a presence.
To choose the correct platform, consider your audience’s demographics. What age range do they fall into? When are they most likely to see your content? Do they prefer video or static content? Of course, it may take a while to get familiar with your audience so don’t be hard on yourself.
Mistaking Your Book Description for a Summary
Readers are curious people. When they’re looking for a new book, they want to read something new and fresh. However, if you can’t get them to buy your book based on the description, then you’ve lost them. Book descriptions should inspire curiosity and intrigue rather than rehashing your entire plot. No one will buy a book when they know the ending, or even if they can guess the ending.
Of course, it takes time to craft a compelling description, but the most important thing to keep in mind is to refrain from summarizing. Readers will ask themselves, ‘What’s in it for me?’ and your book description should provide an enticing answer. Tell the reader what they will get from the story, rather than what happens to the characters. Market the experience of reading the book rather than the plot’s twists and turns.
Want more marketing advice? Send us your questions and our team of experts will answer them!