We’ve written extensively about the importance of book marketing. It’s that old adage of hiding your light under a bushel basket – and just having your book ‘available’ on Barnes&Noble or other retail sites in NO WAY implies any level of awareness. Really, some of the most important work you’ll do to make your book sell STARTS long after your writing was finished.

Self published authors frequently lament their lack of book sales. All too often, I’m sure, good planning and a smart strategy could have changed those stories.

A sound and sensible book marketing plan is just as important as the writing, editing, design, and publication of a book. No matter how wonderful your book might be, it won’t sell itself…and it’s highly unlikely for a new author’s (and even many well seasoned ones’) book to jump off bookstore shelves without some help. Readers have MILLIONS of titles to choose from – tens-of-thousands are published every year.

Your book marketing plan should be designed to identify the revenue streams you plan to tap into. This document should be an outline of how you will achieve your income or sales goals, and it should identify in detail the market you’re targeting.

Building a book marketing plan.

Everyone knows a book won’t sell itself, Right? Surprisingly, many authors DON’T fully grasp this fact until it’s too late – and they are disappointed with their sales performance. Every book needs some sort of book marketing plan – something that sets your expectations and creates achievable goals that you can pursue in an orderly fashion.

But, how do you create a marketing plan for your book? There is a ton of great free software, and even more that you can spend lots of money on, that all help you create a marketing plan for selling your book. However, before you spend a lot of time and money downloading software, open up your trusty word processor and follow me…

Chapter One – Who will buy your book?

The secret to sales success is to target your marketing as directly as possible to your potential reader – and have it be someone who is reachable.

“Everyone will want to read my book!” Sorry, but that doesn’t work. Even the absolute best selling books – that sell 2 or 3 million copies in a year – only penetrate about 3% of the reading population. Sales success for your book will be driven by defining a very clear picture of who is interested in your book.

They must be identifiable: Make a list! Which groups would be interested in your book? Why? Who is next? Why should they need or want your book? (remember this – someone is more likely to buy something they NEED before something they WANT)

Now – narrow it down even more. Find a unique angle about your book – and don’t try and be everything to everyone, because you can’t – instead target 100% of a specific part!

Chapter Two – What is your definition of success for your book? What is your GOAL?

Some authors write for themselves and their families only – they don’t dream of their books as bestsellers in the marketplace. Some authors write for a very specific personal need to tell their story. Some have unique insight into very specific topics. Many have dreams of seeing their books in the front of Barnes & Noble. Each author is different, but you MUST decide what your real definition of success happens to be. We don’t want to pursue a goal that may not be what you actually feel is important.

Chapter Three – Objectives, Plans and Actions

Everything needs to start with a GOAL – and that is what you outlined in Chapter Two. Everything you do for your book should be in support of this goal.

Objectives– these are the steps you take to achieve your GOAL – for example, if your goal is to sell 5,000 books, then you need to identify some OBJECTIVES as the “steps” to achieving your goal. Just like your GOAL – make sure your Objectives are reasonable, and something that you can achieve. One of the biggest mistakes you can make is to confuse WANTING to do something to achieve a goal with being ABLE to achieve a goal – make sure you possess the necessary skills to do the things on your list. Perhaps my OBJECTIVES list would look like this:

  1. Set up personal events to promote my book – book signings, seminars, radio interviews, etc.
  2. Secure reviews from print resources.
  3. Identify online resources for promotion of my book
  4. Identify non-retail opportunities for book sales.
  5. Create outbound awareness campaign of me, the author, as an expert in my field

Plans – your PLANS outline the needed steps to get your OBJECTIVES moving, and they begin to suggest “to do lists” and measurable actions. For example, one of my Objectives is to set up personal events to promote my book. So, my plan section might look like this:

  • Objective:Personal Appearances:
    • Plans:
      i. Set up one book signing per week at local outlets
      ii. Set up two seminars on book marketing in 1st quarter
      iii. Conduct one radio interview per month over the coming year

Actions– these are the details of each PLAN- and, as the saying goes, “the devil is in the details”. This is where most marketing plans fail – you must have a coherent and workable set of “actions” to achieve each plan, that then lead to each objective – and, eventually, achieves your ultimate goal. If you can’t produce a reasonable set of “actions” for achieving each plan, then scrap the plan and start over. Here is my “Action” list for the Objective / Plans above:

  • Objective: Personal Appearances:
    • Plan: Set up one book signing per week at local bookstores
      ACTIONS:
      • Call B&N at Keystone– get Events Coord. name – make appt. to visit and present book signing idea. BRING BOOK!! Mary knows Mgr. – get intro?
      • Books-A-Million Mgr. – drop off book – and mention reading / seminar on mktg.
      • Contact library for presentations on self-pub. Monthly event?

As you can see, it really is all about breaking your marketing efforts down in to small enough pieces to be A) understandable, B) achievable and C) measurable.

Marketing & publicity is a long-term, consistent and concerted effort. It never ever happens overnight, even though it may seem to for some people.

Chapter Four – Create a reasonable timeline and budget

All of us have finite amounts of time, energy and money. Marketing can eat up all three very quickly, leaving you alone, exhausted and broke. The game is to pace yourself and resources so that you can keep the effort moving along. This is where your planning in Chapter Three works its magic. Without looking at the “big picture,” most of us would never know how much of our precious resources should be devoted to each aspect of the game. Organization and prioritizing are the most important parts of the process – and you may find yourself returning to “Chapter Three” and rewriting sections of your plan.

Here are some monetary expenses you may expect to incur in your marketing plan:

  1. Sample Books – do you plan on sending them out or dropping them off?
  2. Marketing materials – posters, flyers, postcards, etc.
  3. Press release writing and distribution
  4. Advertising – sponsored search, links, banners, print
  5. Web site design and shopping cart creation
  6. Direct mail opportunities

A quick note on samples – I don’t believe in sending out books blindly – it’s too expensive and not effective. If a potential resource is interested in your book, they’ll ask for it (as long as you’ve written a good press release).

Chapter Five – Creating a brand with your book marketing plan

Think about this. In many cases you, not your book,  are really the “brand”. Books can occasionally be seen as a commodity. “Experts” who can be interviewed on a topic are often far more valuable. Your book is your calling card, and ultimately the way you will profit from your expertise,  but many times it’s YOU, the expert, that is the selling point!

Use your marketing plan to push you as the primary product, building a brand around what you know and your “mystique” as an author. Also, don’t forget to let us know your plans! If you and your book are “tied” as a brand, let us help you use your book to increase your credibility and awareness. At least have us add your web site in several places in the book – even on the cover. Letting us in on your marketing plans can allow us time to help you create the best possible product.

That’s it – the building of a book marketing plan in a nutshell if you will. Let us know if we can answer any questions, and thanks for reading.

As always – if you like this information (and found it helpful) please feel free to post it on your site, put it in a blog, toss it in your newsletter, or in general spread it around. Please just give us credit here at dogearpublishing.net

May you have success in your creative efforts!

If you have any questions or comments – please write us at AuthorResources@dogearpublishing.net

What writer doesn’t want to be a success? That’s what drives so many authors down the “do-it-yourself” route in the first place. The problem is that for every DIY success story, there are literally thousands of failures. The statistics are sobering: In 2010, 2.75 million titles were DIY-published. Yet one POD company that published over 10,000 titles in 2010 reported an average of 75 sales per title — which means that while a few titles probably sold quite a bit more, most sold quite a bit less.

So what’s a DIY author to do? Obviously, success is possible, or this blog wouldn’t exist. How can you increase your chances of getting your book into the top 10% — the group of authors who sell over 500 copies annually and earn anywhere from $5,000 to $10,000 per year?

1) Forget about becoming an “overnight success.” Perhaps the most important step you can take is to cast aside the notion that DIY publishing is the road to overnight success. Unfortunately, “speed” is one of the factors that often lures authors down this road in the first place. Traditional publishing takes time — lots of time. Agents and editors may take months to respond to a submission, and if that response is a rejection, the author gets to start again, and again, and again. DIY publishing holds out the promise that if you send in your manuscript today, you can be holding a shiny printed copy of your book within weeks, or even days.

Having a printed book and having a “successfully published” book are two very different things, however. Your task is to recognize that, as a DIY author, you are a general without an army. A traditional publisher has that army — a staff of editors, proofreaders, designers, artists, marketers and distributors — whose sole job is to create and sell high-quality books. Further, that publisher has ties with the bookselling industry that ensure that a minimum number of your books will get into bookstores, no matter what. (They may not sell once they get there, but they will get there.)

You, on the other hand, have… you. And you probably have other things to do — things like a job and family. You simply cannot achieve in a month, or six months, what a commercial publisher can achieve.

So what can you do?

2) Don’t overestimate yourself. You may be a brilliant author, but that doesn’t mean you’re a brilliant book designer, cover artist, or marketer. However, as a DIY author, you’re still responsible for all those facets of book production. Half the battle is recognizing what you’re not good at, and finding alternatives when “doing it yourself” is not the best option. In short, you may not have an army, but if necessary, you can hire one.

3) Don’t cut corners. During WWII, the term “ersatz” came into the English language to describe an inferior substitute for “the real thing.” Ersatz bread included fillers such as sawdust; ersatz coffee was made with chicory or beans. The word came to mean something that might look like the real thing, but that, on closer inspection, wasn’t even close.

At conferences and book fairs, I frequently find myself looking at what I can only describe as “ersatz” books. They positively scream “DIY.” Their authors hope against hope that readers will look past the poor design and appalling cover art to discover the gems within. The problem is, readers have a choice. No one eats bread made from sawdust if real bread is readily available — and we DIY authors often forget that there is no shortage of high-quality, well written, beautifully presented books on the market. Readers aren’t going to assume that a book that looks inferior in the outside is going to be a gem on the inside. Instead, readers are going to assume that if it looks like sawdust, it’s probably going to taste like sawdust.

In short, readers do judge books by their covers… and by their interiors. I am amazed at how many DIY books have no margins and are printed like manuscripts, with double lines between paragraphs or unjustified right margins. Readers take one look at poor presentation and assume that if an author can’t even manage to make a book look like a book, what are the odds that it “reads” like one either? A huge key to self-publishing success, ironically, is to do everything in your power to make sure your book doesn’t look self-published.

4) Know who your readers are and where to find them. This is where the nonfiction author often has the advantage over the fiction author. Nonfiction outsells fiction roughly two to one — and one reason for this is the “niche.” If your niche, for example, is Roman military history, you have a lot less competition than if it’s vampire romance. That means that aficionados of Roman military history books are far more likely to find, and buy, your title than fans of fangs, who have hundreds of titles to choose from and not enough time in the world to read them all.

Every article I’ve read on self-publishing statistics is quick to point out that the majority of nonfiction books aren’t sold in bookstores. They’re sold in specialty stores, through businesses and services, in gift shops, and in dozens of other places. Your title on Roman military history, for example, might be a perfect fit for museum shops. Your work on patio container gardening could find a home at nurseries and florists. Your recipe collection for tea-cakes might be a hit amongst Victorian bed-and-breakfasts.

My self-publishing success story is a book titled Coping with Sorrow on the Loss of Your Pet. When I first published the book, I assumed that the appropriate place to find these owners was the pet store. But pet stores don’t want shoppers to think about the possibility of a pet dying. They want to encourage shoppers to buy stuff for living pets — and possibly to adopt a new pet. In time I discovered that the place to find my customers was through such outlets as humane societies, veterinarians, pet loss counselors, and pet cemeteries.

My book was first self-published nearly 26 years ago, when the only way to reach a potential customer was to print an advertisement and send it through the mail. Today, thankfully, we have the Internet — so finding your readers today means determining where they “hang out” online, what types of websites they visit, and how to construct your own site to attract them. It also means taking advantage of the power of Amazon and other online markets, because once a reader “discovers” your book, that’s the place they’re most likely to buy it.

5) Be patient… and persevere. Big publishers can turn a book into an overnight success because they have “shotgun power.” They can get thousands of copies into hundreds of bookstores, all at the same time, while releasing a publicity campaign that includes costly advertising and promotions, all timed to create a dramatic “launch” and instant “buzz.”

We don’t have that ability. It’s important to remember that every step we take will involve a delayed response. If you send a book to a reviewer, and it gets reviewed, that review may not appear for months. If you build a dynamite website, it will take time for word to spread and links to form; it’s not going to get a high ranking on Google overnight. If you have a blog, it will take time to gain followers, and for those followers to post links back from their own blogs. If you create a Facebook page, it will take time to amass “friends” and build a track record of “likes.” If people buy your book on Amazon, it will take months for reviews to trickle back in.

The good news is that success builds on success. More hits on your website, and more links from other sites that consider yours worth promoting, means higher page rankings — which lead to more hits, more visits, more links, and so on. A positive reader review on Amazon will lead to another sale, and another good review, and more sales, and more word of mouth. If a specialty shop orders ten copies of your book and manages to sell them all, they’ll come back for 20 the next time.

So give yourself — and your book — time to succeed. Because the very best kind of self-publishing success isn’t the kind that happens overnight. It’s the kind that lasts — and keeps your book selling for decades!

You, the author, are almost 100% the reason your book will sell. It is your belief, excitement, enthusiasm, and energy that will get readers excited about buying your book. We, however, can be the means by which you communicate your passion to the rest of the world!

But, for ANYTHING to happen we need to know a few things about you and your book. And you’ll need give us a good target at which to aim our marketing efforts.

What is your definition of success for your book?

Some authors write for themselves and their families only – they don’t dream of their books as bestsellers in the marketplace. Some authors write for a very specific personal need to tell their story. Some have unique insight into very specific topics. Many have dreams of seeing their book in the front of Barnes & Noble or Books-A-Million. Each author is different, but you MUST decide what your real definition of success happens to be. We don’t want to pursue a goal that may not be what you actually feel is important.

Who will buy your book?

The secret to sales success is to target your marketing directly as possible to your potential reader – and have it be someone who is reachable.

“Everyone will want to read my book!” Sorry, but that doesn’t work. Even the absolute best selling books – that sell 2 or 3 million copies in a year – only penetrate to about 3% of the population. Sales success for your book will be driven by defining a very clear picture  of who is interested in your book.

They must be identifiable: Make a list! Which groups would be interested in your book? Why? Who is next? Why should they need or want your book? (remember this – someone is more likely to buy something they NEED before something they WANT)

Now – narrow it down even more. Years ago books on computers were all the rage – the market was saturated at the “beginner” level, and it seemed impossible to get anymore books into consumers hands.. Then a company came along with the bright idea that they would write a computer book for beginners – but beginners who felt intimidated by their computers – and the now ubiquitous and quite famous “For Dummies” series was born – at the time the books hit, there were nearly 3 dozen titles out for beginners. Yet this one scooped up nearly a 70% market share overnight. The rest were left to fight for the scraps. Find a unique angle about your book – and don’t try to be everything to everyone, because you can’t – insteand target 100% of a specific part!

Where will you sell your book?

Start Worldwide (world wide web that is) and then get local: Where are your customers? Probably scattered around the country. Use the power of print on demand, and just in time fulfillment to deliver books all across the nation without having to print hundreds at a time. Where do your customers hang out online? What magazines and papers do they read? What stores do they frequent – that AREN’T bookstores? What associations, clubs, or affiliations do they join? What conventions to they go to? How can you reach them? Promote your books where you find a high concentration of potential buyers.

How will you promote your book?

The least expensive and most effective ways to promote books are with book reviews, news releases, search engine registration, and some form of highly targeted direct advertising – such as email campaigns, news releases, and pay-for-performance click through advertising. Longer term promotions include author signings, TV and Radio spots, and tradeshows – these are also the most difficult, time consuming, and expensive to secure.

Do NOT neglect the power of you the author – our top tier packages include materials that can help turn you into a promotional machine. Business cards, posters, bookmarks – all are available to support your marketing efforts.

Follow these steps on creating a plan for your book, and together we will build a great campaign to get the word out about your story!

In other articles we’ve talked about how to identify what you would consider success for your book – and how to begin developing ideas for promotion and marketing (see the article here –What Is Book Marketing?). In this article, we want to bring you more fully into the world of book marketing and show you how to effectively market your self published book using Press Releases and New Book Announcements.

I come from the traditional publishing world – both working at the largest retail bookstore chain in the world and at the largest book publisher… and I spent years thinking that I (and others like me) knew the best ways to promote and sell books. All it took was tens of thousands of dollars in advertising, a hot spot on radio or TV, and an author who could be presentable in interviews. It wasn’t about the audience, topic, book quality, or even the author.

It wasn’t long before I saw how wrong I was! Boy did I learn some lessons after leaving the safe havens and hallowed halls of traditional publishing (I actually learned a bunch while I was there too). I am convinced that the author is the single most important and effective tool in promoting his or her book. You must promote your book as aggressively as possible. It is your efforts that will make the difference between your book becoming a successful and exciting seller, or collecting dust and mold on damp shelves (those units that don’t get returned.)

Well, then – what to do? How can you go beyond just seeing your words in print, and actually bring to life your dream of being a successful, selling author? It’s always risky to make broad statements about marketing and promoting books – because so often varying audiences and topics have very different needs. BUT – most of the mechanics are the same. Keep in mind the audience for which you wrote your book in the first place. NEVER, EVER forget that it’s far easier to sell your book to someone genuinely interested in your topic!

So we return once again to WHO WILL READ YOUR BOOK? Who is your target audience? Hopefully you’ve spent some time thinking about this – and have written your book with an audience in mind. Now we have to find ways to reach them…

1 – Magazines

One of the first items on the list is to identify the media sources that cater to your audience – look for the magazines that are read by the people who will be reading your book and search the Internet for newsletters. It goes like this – say your are Helen Corey – our author of Healthy Syrian and Lebanese Cooking, then her target magazines include Bon Apetit, Gourmet, and Cuisine magazines. Web sites would be Cooks.com, Epicurious.com and others. How about a book on real estate like our recent author Al Chapman – then maybe magazines like REALTOR, but also publications like Smart Money. Try to think outside the box!

But wait – now you need to do some research about each of those magazines! Spend some time identifying the editor that writes reviews about books or other materials – or the editor who is charge of covering your specific topic (ethnic food, or real estate investments for example). It’s far better to contact 50 highly targeted sources than to send 500 blind or blanketed press releases.

Now it’s time to write your press release (or review the one we’ll provide you in our Professional and Masterpiece packages). Two things have to occur for your Press Release to have ANY value – 1) it must truly reflect your book and the target markets needs, and 2) unless it actually gets to the desk of the RIGHT person to write about your book, it’s almost guaranteed that the WRONG person will dump your hard won Release in the wastebasket. What does this all mean? Research, research, research – hit the phones, scour the web sites, and go to the bookstore and read the mastheads and ferret out the name – or names – of the RIGHT person (or persons) at each magazine. Remember this, too – getting a review in a niche publication (think small targeted circulation vs. mainstream like Gourmet) is well worth your effort and time – the people reading and visiting specialty publications are already predisposed to be interested in your book.

2- Newspapers (small and large)

Now it’s time to hit the papers. Here, some additional tricks can help you – and it’s even more important to send your press release to targeted individuals. Practically every paper around the country has an editor for specific topics such as science, health, sports, lifestyle, travel, etc. Get to the right person! But, don’t neglect the Book Reviewer or editor – just remember that there are quite likely many places in the paper that could possibly review your book (or even mention it as a resource for a story!) A “guerilla” marketing approach (if we don’t write your press release) – ask your targeted editor if he or she can recommend someone to write your press release. Many editors “freelance” their services – and it might be a way to get a wonderfully written press release, and a leg up in getting it printed!

3- I want to be a star on the RADIO (and TV)

Both the AM and FM dials are full of talk radio – and this is your target. Hit AM first (since there are so many, the chances of getting on the air are higher) and then follow up with the “big guys” on FM like NPR’s All Things Considered. Email, mail, or fax your Press Release to every single one that seems appropriate. We can assist you in purchasing a database of such stations, or you can hit the internet and look this information up on your own. Several companies make directories of the radio industry – including Gale Research – and many are available in the library. Don’t forget to start local and work outwards – you are more likely to attract attention in your own town than somewhere 500 miles away. While it’s tough to say how often it is successful, make sure to get your information to your local TV stations – quite often a slow news day may come up, or, you might be hitting on a hot and current topic – and you might get a call. Get the names of the producers who set up interviews, or the reporter who covers the subject that you’ve written about. Don’t forget cable television. Then fax AND email your information to them – and my experience is DON’T call… but be persistent with email and faxes every couple of weeks.

As I’ve said, pay particular attention to your local stations and papers – you’ll have a far greater chance of getting on a local show or in a local paper. Another strong outlet is your city’s multitude of “freebie” community newspapers. Most of the time, these outlets have a need for good material – and always love it when that information is free. Remember to contact the ones you wouldn’t normally think of – a book on real estate would be a great “editorial” in the local real estate or “homes for sale” magazine!

Well, I’ve sent all these Press Releases – Don’t I want to send a book, too? NO – for one, it’s VERY expensive; and two – most editors don’t want to read your book, they want to read a nice, short Press Release to get an idea of what your book is about. Your Press Release will be nicely written, one or two pages, and will direct the reader to either contact you or us for review copies, and to set up an interview – pick one or the other. NO editor wants to call two places. Don’t make them do extra work!

4 -National Exposure – the BIG ONES

The Today Show, Regis, Oprah, Good Morning America – all the famous shows. Every single one of them should get a copy of your Press Release. Do your research again and get the names of the producers – watch a show or two and see who produces which segments (or even the ones you think you’ll like) and send them your Press Release. Mention what you liked about one of their shows and why you think you can present something of a similar level of interest to the audience. These shows are long shots for even the most successful of authors – but there are times you’ d be very surprised by who ends up on the air!

These four “Marketing Targets” cover the entire spectrum of media likely to review your book and give you “air time”. Between all these media outlets, the internet, and local interest, there is a very good chance that you’ll end up on at least one. One of the last bits of advice to increase your chances is to make sure the producers and editors understand that you are available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Many times complete unknowns have vaulted into stardom because of a big name last minute cancellation!

As a last thought – use the relationships you have. Authors MUST be fairly shameless self promoters – but do it with some level of dignity. Everyone you know should know that you have written a book and that you are on the Promotion & Marketing Warpath! Ask friends if they have friends who have friends at any of the above mentioned outlets – you’ll be surprised how close some of these “media makers” are –sometimes desperate reporters, television producers and radio hosts are just looking for guests to pop up out of the woodwork. Let everyone know that you are available.

Finally – promote, promote, promote – saturate the media with Press Releases and Announcements. It is a very rare book indeed that sells purely on it’s own “psychic” draw and no public awareness.

guerilla marketing (n) – The art of promoting your book in ways that revolve around ingenuity rather than money.


If you have read our newsletter for any length of time, you know we frequently comment on how a self-published author’s work on their book does not stop when the writing is done. It is entirely likely that you will spend more time promoting your book than you actually did writing it. The key is to learn how to promote your book effectively without either wasting your time or going broke in the process. You need to find the promotional efforts that will deliver the most bang for the buck.

This is where you turn to Guerilla Marketing

The term “guerrilla marketing” was created by Jay Conrad Levinson author of a series of books on the subject. The idea is to make as large of an impact as possible without spending tremendous amounts of money. Guerilla marketing goes deeper than just selling books, it’s about how to transform you and your book into a brand – it’s how you conduct your daily life, interact with potential readers, and build relationships with interested (and interesting) parties. Marketing is really EVERYTHING you do, done on a REGULAR basis. From the title of your book, to the name of your website, to the signature line at the bottom of your emails – all are part of guerilla marketing.

Here’s a quick table of the differences between traditional book marketing and guerilla book marketing

Traditional Guerilla
brick-and-mortar bookstore-centric non-traditional outlets (internet, direct sales, etc)
Inventory based (get books on shelves) Direct-to-consumer based (sell books directly to customers)
“push” books into the market “pull” books into the market
High monetary investment / low return Low to moderate investment / high return
Gross Sales / potential returns Net Sales / grow profit
Shotgun approach targeted and focused
Sporadic consistent and regular basis

 

Think about how you have gone about promoting your book – or even the services or products you’ve considered purchasing to help in the promotion of your book – on which side of this chart do they fall? Do the ideas or materials you’ve thought about work for you, or will you have to work for them to get sales? As Peter Drucker has said, “The aim of marketing is to make selling superfluous.” Few authors relish the thought of becoming sales people. So don’t – become a guerilla marketer!

Here’s a short list of ideas that will help you build an inexpensive, yet very effective and profitable guerilla marketing campaign for your book.

  • Guerilla Tactic #1- Stop making the booksellers and wholesalers rich – get a web site and shopping cart. Continuously giving away 40, 50, or 55% on your books just destroys your profit. Your book MUST be available through all the “traditional” outlets, but it doesn’t mean they are the only outlets.
  • Guerilla Tactic #2: Create a newsletter or e-zine centered around the topic / genre of your book. This will bring “like-minded” readers to your site and build awareness of you and your book.
  • Guerilla Tactic #3: Send postcards to everyone you can think of who might be interested in your book. You’d be surprised to discover the effectiveness of direct mail..
  • Guerrilla Tactic #4: Get involved in the online communities that deal with your topic / genre. Participate in newsgroups and forums. Present unique ideas or fresh perspectives – but be cautious of “spamming” the group about your book. Update your signature line in your email with your book title and web address.
  • Guerrilla Tactic #5: Offer to give speeches to companies, schools or organizations about your field of expertise. You can hand out business cards or brochures at most events.
  • Guerrilla Tactic #6: Present readings or discussion groups at your local library, school, community events, business gatherings and even nursing homes. The goal is to expose readers to what you have to offer.
  • Guerrilla Tactic #7: Find a way to get in the news – get Press Releases about you and your book to your local paper and radio stations. Create a perception of “newsworthiness” by presenting yourself as an expert on your topic or genre (or even “self publishing” for that matter…}
  • Guerrilla Tactic #8: Become a resource – if you’ve written fiction, review books in your genre. Business expert? Serve as a resource to your local media. Reporters work under horrendous deadlines, and occasionally they may need something to go to press quickly and your story might just be at hand.
  • Guerrilla Tactic #9: Give something away – at your reading, give away a book or two. Post your favorite chapter on the web. If your book is non-fiction, offer a service. Target your giveaway to the intended audience.
  • Guerrilla Tactic #10: Above all, be creative – do the things that no one else is doing. Our author Jillian Curtis did a reading of her book – and her son offered to dress up like the main character! Have fun –and make sure others are having fun too and you will sell books.

These are just a few ideas to get you started – each author and each book is unique. You need to tailor your marketing to what you can physically do. Don’t get stuck on a single idea – guerillas use a wide variety of marketing tools, all designed to work together. Launch multiple marketing efforts simultaneously.