The Fundamentals of Self-Published Book Marketing


There’s an explosion of interest in book marketing firms as an ever-increasing number of writers self-publish their work. In the early days of authors acting as their own publishers, it might have required different (or additional) promotional tactics. But today, self-published books are promoted in much the same way as their traditionally published competitors. Everyone is competing for the same rankings online and coverage in the media. By now, almost everyone agrees that quality books are all that matter, regardless of how they are published. Self-published authors do shoulder promotional responsibility.

Most savvy authors have decided on a target audience for their books long before writing them. Those decisions then influence the marketing campaign that follows. As you begin discussing publicity to promote your book, it’s crucial to clarify why it advances your topic or is better than what’s come before it. Making the case to prospective readers about its value is required to spark sales and build momentum. It’s never wise to be critical of other authors’ work, but you need to be inspiring about your superiority of yours. Regardless of your genre, readers have multiple choices, and you must persuade them.

Before you publish your book, launch a website. Until a couple of years ago, some contrarian writers might have questioned the need for a site, but those days are over. Everyone today will look for your website, and it’s a valuable way to connect your fans with future books after they read your first one. For the media, your site needs to include your bio, a headshot, and news about your book. For target readers, it needs to have an easy-to-click link to places where your book is for sale. Leveraging the power of a well-designed book is essential for your book and your personal visibility as a published author.

With the coronavirus pandemic behind us, book marketing campaigns are becoming more in-person again. Elements can include media tours, in-store appearances, and giving speeches. But a substantial portion remains online and is likely to do so permanently. The initial resistance to online interviews has faded, and virtual tactics like blog tours are increasingly important. They are money and time savers when you can do them from your home or office in front of your screen. Take virtual appearances as seriously as you would in-person ones, and ensure you’re prepared. It will build your confidence and success.

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