Writing is an art, one that brings joy to its creator. There is a certain yearning to get the words on paper and lastly have it printed on a book. For those looking to have their books published by a big publishing house there is much more required before they offer anyone a publishing contract; book proposal. The book proposal is for the publisher, a book marketing plan for you. It is a roadmap for your book marketing efforts. Both plans are integral for your book success.
Think about your book as a product, and that’s exactly what it is. As any other product that you might consider to market to make a profit you must think of :
- Its value compared to similar products and how yours is better.
- You should also know who your customers would be and where to find them.
- Avenues to advertise and promote your book off and online.
- Possible sponsors for your book.
- Stores, organizations or business who can offer your book in a gift with purchase offer
- Where to get reviews to include on your book, your website and any other promotional material. Try to get reviews from people who are experts in your book topic; your readers will know them and their review will heavily influence their buying decision.
- Analyze the content of your book and devise a way to develop a talk, workshop, or community based on one or more of the topics discussed in it.
- Write a few articles related to your book to use as a traffic building tool to your website, web log or forum. There are many places where you can submit articles free for others to use in their websites or electronic magazines as long as they keep it intact with all your information and links.
- Think about other type of media you can include with the book like CD version, calendars, software, workbook, etc.
- Develop a special report to be downloaded from your website as a thank you for their purchase. You can print the information within your book. If you have them register at your site before downloading the report you will be building your own fan mailing list.
There is so much you can do with a book if you only take time to think it over and plan for the marketing strategy before you write the first word.
According to a survey performed by Guerrilla Marketers’ Cafe with over a hundred book lovers, one of the most important parts of a book who influenced their decision to buy was the back cover. Dan Poynter explains it in detail in his book The Self-Publishing Guide and Is There a Book Inside You? On it he explains step-by-step how to divide the back cover section and what items to include in it to make it more attractive and to impress the reader with your book’s value. The book cover in general is a very important to the book, it’s what the readers see first and it should attract them in just a few seconds. And excellent written book with a poor cover won’t reach its audience. Go to the book store and look at books in your genre and see what attracts you enough to pick up, notice its layout, colors, typeset graphics, etc. Make notes of the elements and then take that information to develop your own book cover design. When it comes to cover design a professional is your best choice, but if you can’t afford one think about college students which you can hire for half the price or interest a graphic art class to take on your book cover as a project. You can contact college professors and propose the project for one of their classes. You can also request to have them make posters, cards, business cards or any other promotional material from it. Banners and logos will come in handy for when you develop your website or web log. There is a lot of software available you can also use to customize your own promotional material and then take it to your nearest printer or upload it online.
I hope you understand the importance of building a marketing plan for your book before you write your book. It is the key to make it a success and to be considered in the future for future ones. It doesn’t matter if you submit your book to a publisher or self-publish your book, the process should be the same and you should have a clear vision of how the book will find its way into the readers’ hands.
Clary Lopez is the CEO/Founder of Guerrilla Marketers Café, Free Book Promotion site. She is an author, moderator and publicist. You can contact her at firstname.lastname@example.org