1. Write a one page promo sheet for your book that you can send out to local bookstores and newspapers. It should include a picture of the book, your picture, a summary of the book, bio information about you, and information on how to purchase the book. CCB Publishing provides all its authors with a Media Kit which can be used as is or you can use it as a template to design one for your own purposes
2. Look up local bookstores in your area using a phone book or Google. Larger chain stores such as Barnes & Noble, Borders, or Books-A-Million as well as other smaller local bookstores are often interested in local authors. The larger bookstore chains will almost always require that books be made available from your publisher as Fully Returnable (CCB Publishing can make its authorsí books available to its distribution partners as ďfully returnableĒ for an annual fee of only $100.00 USD.) Talk to the manager of the store and ask if you can do a book signing. You may be required to provide copies of your own book on consignment.
3. Contact the local newspapers and magazines in your area, specifically the neighborhood papers. They are more willing to do a story about local authors and new book releases than the larger papers. Some local papers donít have enough staff to do a story, so devise a press release yourself before calling them and offer to send it to them if they will print it. Make sure to have a clear picture of the book available to send with the release or story. Graduates of colleges or universities can approach their Alumni Association. These associations usually publish magazines or newsletters on a quarterly basis and are often eager to feature former graduates who have had success in getting their work published.
4. Donate a copy of your book to your local library and ask if they can promote you in their monthly newsletter or on their web site. Use this promotion to arrange for a reading and/or book signing. Arrange to donate a portion of all book sales to the library. Local newspapers will almost always promote events such as these.
5. Order inexpensive promotion materials from www.Vistaprint.com including postcards that you can send out to people you know with the picture of the book on the cover. Having business cards made up from the same source to hand out when meeting people is another good networking tool.
6. Get a web site where you can promote your book. You can get an expensive web site plus free (or inexpensive) hosting from companies such as www.Register.com, www.Verio.com, www.GoDaddy.com, etc. if you buy a domain name from them. When registering your domain name, make sure it is something recognizable and not too complicated. For instance, you can use the title of your book like www.TheRavenExpress.com or you can use your name such as www.JackDevon.com. You want people to remember the name. Having a web site is also helpful for the next tip.
7. If you have written a self-help or non-fiction book, Google AdWords are very effective for advertising inexpensively. People looking for information on a topic will go to Google, type a word such as ďautismĒ or ďreal estateĒ and find your ad.
8. You must learn to be your own best publicist. Pass out business cards with your book to everyone you meet. Send out announcements to everyone on your email list.
9. Use social networking tools such as www.Twitter.com, www.Facebook.com, www.LinkedIn.com, etc. to stay in touch with all your contacts on a regular basis and keep them informed of book signing events, etc. You can also start a blog and make journal entries about your newest work and progress you are making in your latest project. People are always fascinated in the creative process. Take them along on your journey.
10. For works of fiction and non-fiction alike, considering joining Yahoo groups or other similar gatherings of likeminded individuals. There are literally hundreds if not thousands of these groups that have tens of thousands of members all around the world. Join a group, participate in the conversation, get permission from the moderator to discuss your book, or maybe even consider starting your own group.
11. Issue press releases to reach and inform the media about your book. Sites such as www.pr.com, www.prweb.com, etc. can assist in reaching the media. Two FREE services that will help you contact the media are www.HelpaReporter.com and www.Radio-Locator.com. Register with Help A Reporter as a Source to let journalists know that you can provide information for their stories. Looking for talk radio stations that may be interested in your book? With Radio-Locator you can easily locate stations in your city, state, and even across the United States and Canada. Also consider exploring blog talk radio. Look at all the talk shows and write to hosts doing shows about authors or your subject matter. A lot of shows are looking for guests on specific topics, especially non-fiction.
12. If you have a non-fiction topic, consider a radio show on blog talk radio. This is a computer based show that you can do from home. You can get free time to do it or you can buy prime time spots for $40.00 a month and broadcast yourself about your book. You can ask people you know to be guests on your show. The radio show can be accessed from anyoneís computer anywhere in the world 24/7. They can even listen to your archived broadcasts if they canít listen live. Also, you can use the link for the radio show to promote your book when you are sending out emails for promotion.
Bonnie Kaye of the Books of Excellence Radio Show can interview you on her show from the comfort of your own home. An author can appear with the Books of Excellence Internet Radio Show for a fee of $30.00 USD for a one-hour interview. Contact Bonnie Kaye, Director of the Books of Excellence Co-op (www.booksofexcellence.com), at Bonkaye@aol.com for more information.
13. Be realistic about spending money for marketing. Realize how much money you are going to make on each book and then weigh that against your marketing budget. Donít trust clever promotion companies that promise to send your book information to major shows for a hefty price. This is a scam, and there are loads of scammers out there. Always check out the company and what success they have had with books. A good guideline is looking at the Amazon ratings of a book. Unless the rating is in the top 200 consistently, then you donít need this kind of marketing because itís a scam. Ask for at least three (3) references from satisfied authors. Then follow-up and contact the references to find out if the promotion company did what they promised and how many books were sold as a result. Did the author recoup their money and make a profit?
14. Always keep your eyes open for venues where you can sell your books. It may be local flea markets, church fairs, community center events, etc. Many authors sell their books at places such as these by setting up a table with copies of their books and offering to personally autograph them.
15. Ask friends and family to write positive and interesting reviews for your book on the Amazon.com and Barnes & Noble web sites. When people view your book online and see good reviews, it will encourage them to buy the book.
16. Using a web cam or similar device, consider creating a video that will help bring your book to life. Short, clever and interesting videos uploaded to sites such as www.YouTube.com can be accessed by people all around the world and watched by millions. When contacting the media, you can also provide a link to your video so they may evaluate you as a potential guest on their show or source for a story.
If you have tips or suggestions of your own that have worked for you and may be helpful to others, please send them to us by e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org so we can share them with everyone.
For those individuals who may require assistance in navigating through some of the above suggestions, please contact Bonnie Kaye at BonKaye@aol.com. Bonnie will assist authors for a modest fee.