My Five Top Marketing Tips for Authors

While I don’t have a marketing degree, I have been actively involved in the blogging world for the past nine years. I opened my own review site in 2011 and I have picked up a few tips and tricks as I help connect authors with readers.

Don’t Be Afraid to Talk About Your Novels!

I have lost count of how many authors I have heard say they are afraid to talk too much about their novels.  Outside of your most ardent fans, no one knows a novel better than the person who wrote it. You put blood, sweat and tears into your latest creation so you should not hesitate to shout about it to the world!

Maintain and Update Your Website with Your Past, Present and Future Releases

This seems like a no brainer piece of advice but unfortunately not all authors routinely update their websites. Even more surprising, not all authors HAVE a website.  I do not know how many times I’ve gone to an authors’ website to find out about their upcoming release only to discover it is not even mentioned.  It is helpful if there is a work in progress area on an author’s website which includes updates about series and other books you are working on. You do not have to provide concrete details about who is in the next novel or a release date, but  readers are interested in knowing there is another book in the works.

Have a Social Media Presence

In the age of the internet, I am always surprised to discover an author does not have a twitter account and/or Facebook fan page. As a blogger, I like to tag authors on both platforms when I review their latest book and when I am promoting their novels.  As a reader,  I find both Twitter and Facebook fan pages a fun way to learn about authors and their novels. I tend to be a social media lurker, so I get that not everyone wants to put their lives on the internet.  However social media is a great way to share information about periodic updates about upcoming novels, book sales, personal appearances at various industry events and cyber tours.

Don’t Be Afraid to Ask a Book Blogger to Promote Your Novels

I eat, breathe and sleep books so I am fairly in tune with information about upcoming releases. Most fans are pretty up to date about releases from their favorite authors.  But there are a lot of authors in the publishing world so it is impossible to know about every release. That is where a book blogger could be of invaluable assistance for your next release. But a few things to keep in mind. Not all bloggers can accommodate a last minute request to publicize your release so try to ask as far in advance as possible.   Many bloggers run their sites in their spare time and it takes time to set up a post. Please include as much information in your request as possible-the dates you are hoping for publicity, release date (if applicable), book title, page count and genre at a minimum.  For a blog post, it is helpful to provide a jpeg of the book cover, purchase links, publisher, if the book is in a series: the series name and where this current book falls in the series, author bio and social links. To really personalize the post, provide a guest blog or excerpt (preferably exclusive to the blog). And it is always a nice gesture to include a giveaway. The prize does not have to be extravagant but readers love free books and gift cards.

Use a Blog Tour Company 

If the thought of promoting your own novel is overwhelming, then I highly recommend hiring a blog tour company. There are many fantastic tour companies out there who do a marvelous job finding blogs to host stops for you. I have worked with many tour companies over the years and I really do believe they are the best option for authors if they can afford to hire one.

However, I want to add a warning about tours that also host review for authors. If an author is hoping for Amazon reviews, a review written in conjunction with a  tour is not allowed since most blog tour companies are paid for their services. A blog on the tour is not receiving compensation but since the author paid for the tour, any resulting reviews are considered paid reviews and are therefore ineligible to be posted on Amazon.

I hope you find my tips useful in marketing your novels.

Book Review & More by Kathy Social Links: Website * Twitter * Facebook

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