In Your Corner: Partnering With Bloggers

Or, How to Find Others Who Care As Much As You Do

And therein lies the rub.  There will never be another person out there to whom your book will mean the same thing that it means to you, the self-publishing author–but as our current president is wont to say on tour in Australia, “we have faced our share of sticky wickets!” (Don’t worry if you haven’t watched a game of cricket in your life … this is where I end my allusions to that game.)  There will be other people out there–readers and other authors and self-publishing aficionados alike–to whom your book means a great deal.  Just, you know, in different ways.

And some of them will run blogs.

No, wait, that’s a very important detail!  Blogs sell books.  More specifically, blogs have collectively served as the underground advertising board (and yes, market) for self-published books since the dawn of the internet.  It has proven to be a mutually beneficial relationship, borne out of the early years of both blogging as a digital platform; think how LiveJournal and MySpace and, yes, WordPress were all coming into being around the same time as the modern incarnation of the self-published book–and the ebook.  Blogging was a celebration of the freedom of expression of the highest order, and self-publishing was a reaction against excessive control and gatekeeping by the traditional publishing institution.  Many bloggers became self-publishing authors, and vise versa.  They were made for each other.

blogging

The mutually beneficial relationship continues today, as lists like “52 Great Blogs for Self-Publishers” by Joel Friedlander of The Book Designer illustrate.  “Book bloggers love to read books and to recommend them to their own followers,” writes Alan Rinzler, a consulting editor with former entanglements at Harvard and The New York Times.  He takes an in-depth look at the story of self-publishing megastar Amanda Hocking, whose books sold in the millions, reminding his followers–in, yes, a blog post–that they “collectively build markets that can reach millions of potential readers and can turn books into bestsellers. As serious and discerning critics and social networkers, these book lovers have formed regional and national organizations and established huge databases, including this searchable list of more than 1,400 bloggers.”  It’s not ironic that Rinzler uses his own blog to discuss this; really, it’s incredibly easy to find bloggers who care about self-publishing enough to use their personal blogs to discuss it.

What’s hard is finding the right blog to help you sell your books.  And by “sell,” I mean the word in both a transactive and a persuasive sense.  You want someone who believes in your book–not just a passing mention or two.  To find your blogsoulmate, I recommend following a few simple steps.

  1. Dig a little.  If you’ve found us here at Self-Publishing Advisor, I’m going to go out on a limb and venture a guess that you’ve done your research.  At the very least, you’re handy with Google and WordPress.  That’s all you need to get started.  Dig around a bit and increase your exposure to the types of blogs out there.  We feature reviews of self-published books once a week, but we do a lot of other things, too, and many of our bloggers have close ties to one specific self-publishing company.  Other blogs might feature only one blogger with no ties to the industry itself, but who maybe posts multiple reviews a week.  Write yourself up a list of blog names that catch your interest, either in tone or reach.
  2. Take part in the conversation.  Every blog has a comments section, unless someone ran wild and posted something offensive in the past and thereby forced the blogrunner to disable this feature.  Whether the blog is on WordPress, Tumblr, Blogger, or somewhere else, the whole point of its existance is to engender conversation.  Sign yourself up for a profile if you need to, or use the handy “Google Sign-In” or “Facebook Sign-In” options to comment.  As a blogger, I can tell you that replies are always awesome, and they are indicators of where real interest lies.  I guarantee a blogger will take note if you interact with their posts on a regular basis, unless they have something on the order of a trillion commenters already.  But that, too, is useful information.  You want to engage withy communities where you’ll be noticed–so if you feel overwhelmed or lost, that might be a sign to pick a different blog with a slightly more manageable following.
  3. Ask for things.  You know, once you’ve established a toe-hold in the community, don’t be afraid to ask for those things you really want–book reviews, interviews, the blog equivalent of a public service announcement.  Everything helps.  Don’t be afraid of rejection; the worst that can happen is the blogger says “no,” and there are plenty of bloggers out there, so it’s not the end of the road.  In fact, since you’re looking for a believer and not just any blogger, nos are simply the most efficient way to whittle down your options to the best ones.  Once you’ve got a couple of blogs interested in your work, step it up and ask for a blog tour.
  4. Don’t be afraid of the money question.  Sometimes, you might really need the boost that a paid service provides.  It’s a question of weighing the benefits against the expenditure, and determining whether A) you can afford it, and B) it fills a need.  In my personal experience, most indie authors don’t like to consider this option until they’ve run out of other options–and understandably.  I get it, I really do.  Self-publishing is one high-wire act after another, and money is always tight.  But I’ve seen a lot of authors who really could or even would have benefited from a promotional campaign like the one my company and many other companies offer–all of which come with promotion on the company’s official blog, with an extensive reach indeed–but who waited until they’d exhausted all other options.  Like a lot of other components to your marketing campaign, paid promotion should be on the table early and woven organically into the rest of your strategies.

That’s it!  Four steps!  Each of them relies on you to take initiative, which may or may not prove exhausting, but I hope you know one simple thing:

You are not alone. ♣︎


Elizabeth

ABOUT ELIZABETH JAVOR: With over 18 years of experience in sales and management, Elizabeth Javor works as the Manager of Author Services for Outskirts Press. The Author Services Department is composed of knowledgeable publishing consultants, pre-production specialists, customer service reps and book marketing specialists; together, they all focus on educating authors on the self-publishing process to help them publish the book of their dreams. Whether you are a professional looking to take your career to the next level with platform-driven non-fiction or a novelist seeking fame, fortune, and/or personal fulfillment, Elizabeth Javor can put you on the right path.

In Your Corner: The Voice in Your Ear

Or, When to Call for Help

“Your book isn’t just a product,” wrote my fellow Self-Publishing Advisor blogger Kelly back in February.  “It is, in every way and shape and form, an investment.”  She was in the middle of her Marketing B.A.S.I.C.S. series (which holds up well over time, I have to say) at the time, and put together an eloquent defense for those of us who feel the sting of the stigma wrapped around the whole notion of seeking help and advice within the self-publishing world.  We all have felt it, that little itch at the back of our mind, that but you were supposed to be D-I-Ying this! protest sparking our neurons into a frenzy of self-doubt.

There are a lot of myths about seeking help, which Kelly did a pretty good job of dispelling; I want to talk a little about what form that help might take, and specifically I want to talk about a little job title called “Personal Marketing Assistant.”  Or at least, that’s what they’re called by my employer, Outskirts Press (which I feel compelled to be transparent about).  I don’t know what some other companies like Dog Ear title this position, but they’re fundamental to our self-publishing model: in short, they’re the person you talk to on the phone when you’re trying to figure out which service bundle best fits your needs, and what the next steps are to put together a really kicking marketing campaign.  The difference is, perhaps, that at Outskirts we recognize just how vital this voice in your ear can be–so we offer 30-minute to 5-hour conversations with one of our Personal Marketing Assistants as a dedicated service.  There are a lot of reasons why this is a good thing, but ultimately they boil down to: it’s good for our PMAs themselves (to receive public recognition as integral parts of our work) and it’s good for our customers (who can be assured of reaching someone as committed to their project’s success as they are).

A Personal Marketing Assistant comes in most handy, you might have guessed, once you already have your book put together and ready to go.  They are the sort of person you want by your side when you’re putting together a marketing plan or arranging a book signing, developing your author platform or following up on marketing campaign leads.  But a good PMA–no matter which company you elect to self-publish with–will do far more for you than just talk.  A good PMA gets his or her hands dirty with your project, and does a lot of the heavy lifting for those of you who need and ask for the intervention.  This is because you don’t pay them for inspiring words or even just plain good advice.  You pay them to help, and sometimes helping looks like direct involvement.  They are your extra arms and legs, fan extension of your vision for your book.  For the most part, they’re truly gifted and empathetic individuals who got into this business because they thrive on coming alongside others and helping get the job done–helping others realize their dreams.

Q: So when do you call for this kind of help?

A: Whenever you need to.  Whenever you want to.  The stigma associated with asking for help makes it difficult for a lot of us to admit we need help, and it more or less silences those of us who simply want help.  Maybe we can do the job all by ourselves.  But maybe we don’t want to.  Maybe we have the skill set to market our book, technically, but we know we could get a lot more done–maybe around the house, maybe starting our next book–if we cede some of the workload to an expert who is paid to be an expert.  I don’t just want to kick the stigma of asking for help when we need it; I want to bring us back to that foundational self-publishing ethos that says ‘We’re here and self-publishing because we want the power to do exactly what we want without being policed by an agent or publisher.’ Want is as critical a component of self-publishing as need, and I think we forget that.

So: do a little research.  Does your self-publishing company offer the chance to talk to a Personal Marketing Assistant?  Good.  Now, do you want or need a little advice on what to do next?  You go and get it.  And I’ll be right here to cheer you on!

marketing assistant

You are not alone. ♣︎


Elizabeth

ABOUT ELIZABETH JAVOR: With over 18 years of experience in sales and management, Elizabeth Javor works as the Manager of Author Services for Outskirts Press. The Author Services Department is composed of knowledgeable publishing consultants, pre-production specialists, customer service reps and book marketing specialists; together, they all focus on educating authors on the self-publishing process to help them publish the book of their dreams. Whether you are a professional looking to take your career to the next level with platform-driven non-fiction or a novelist seeking fame, fortune, and/or personal fulfillment, Elizabeth Javor can put you on the right path.

The Book Beautiful: Hard vs. Soft Cover

When self-publishing, one of the aesthetic decisions you’ll have to make is whether or not to publish your book as a hard or soft cover. The decision is one that will mainly affect your readers, so when exploring the pros and cons of this decision, we will be considering the experience and opinions of your potential readers.

books on display India

First let’s consider what the pros are to publishing a hardcover title?

  1. Hardcovers are just plain nice to look at. They are sleek.
  2. You don’t have to worry about the pages getting ‘flappy’ or folded at the edges.
  3. They absolutely last longer–I can’t tell you how many paperback books I have with torn off or taped on covers.
  4. No need for a bookmark, just use the handy-dandy book jacket!
  5. Look great as additions to a bookshelf or coffee table.

And the cons to publishing a hardcover title?

  1. They are heavy as can be; i.e. not ideal for travel.
  2. They are undoubtedly more expensive which will deter a lot of potential readers. This also means a higher publishing expense which is important to those of us self-publishing authors.
  3. A lot of readers find book jackets annoying and simply remove them, which means all that time you spent designing a cover may go to waste.
  4. It can certainly be more awkward to handle and read a hardcover; they are bulky and not easily wielded with one hand.
  5. Readers tend to only buy hardcover books of authors they are already die-hard fans of, so if you don’t already have a fan base, it may be more difficult to create one if your book is only available in hardcover.

Now to consider to pros of publishing a softcover title:

  1. Relatively speaking, softcover books are cheaper, both to print and to purchase.
  2. Softcovers are easier to travel with, they are also easier to read on the go.
  3. They are more widely purchased, so you have a better chance of people buying your book, especially first time readers of yours.

And then cons of publishing a softcover title?

  1. They are semi-easy to tear; the cover may fall off.
  2. Not long lasting, especially if you travel with them.
  3. Depending on printing costs, they may not have as high of a profit margin.

With those things in mind, the decision is now yours! (I won’t further complicate things by discussing the pros and cons of adding an ebook to your publication artillery.🙂 )


Thank you for reading!  If you have any questions, comments, suggestions, or contributions, please use the comment field below or drop us a line at selfpublishingadvice@gmail.com.  And remember to check back each Wednesday for your weekly dose of marketing musings from one indie, hybrid, and self-published author to another. ♠


Kelly

ABOUT KELLY SCHUKNECHT: Kelly Schuknecht is the Executive Vice President of Outskirts Press. In addition to her contributions to the Outskirts Press blog at blog.outskirtspress.com, Kelly and a group of talented marketing experts offer book marketing services, support, and products to not only published Outskirts Press authors, but to all authors and professionals who are interested in marketing their books and/or careers. Learn more about Kelly on her blog, kellyschuknecht.com

From the Archives: “The Importance of Genre”

Welcome back to our Tuesday segment, where we’ll be revisiting some of our most popular posts from the last few years.  What’s stayed the same?  And what’s changed?  We’ll be updating you on the facts, and taking a new (and hopefully refreshing) angle on a few timeless classics of Self Publishing Advisor.

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[ Originally posted: March 27th, 2012 ]

The genre of your book is one of the most important decisions you will make when self-publishing. It will impact who buys and reads your book as well as how reads it.

The most important to thing to remember when choosing a genre is to not pick a genre too soon. Too often, authors set out thinking “I want to write children’s books” or “I want to write adult mystery novels,” but writing often takes on a life of its own and your book may not best fit in the genre you originally intended.

Once the book is finished, it is important to consider the audience you hope to reach. Are children your target audience? Are professionals in a certain field your audience, or do you want your book to appeal to a wide, general audience? A narrow genre can limit the readers who find your book. This is one of the few cases where general can be better.

Finally, think about how readers will find your book. Will they primarily search online, or will they visit a  bookstore? If your readers will be searching online, consider keywords when choosing a genre. This will ensure that your book shows up in the search results.

If you are still unsure about the genre of your book, talk to other writers and people who work in the publishing and book distribution industry. Visit your local bookstores to look at the titles in your genre and talk to the sales people. Seeing and hearing what other writers are doing and what readers are buying can help make this difficult decision easier.

by Cheri Breeding

Genre is an important element of your book, before and during and after the publication process–but I must (politely) take a different tack from the one that Cheri Breeding took back in 2012.  In my personal (and somewhat expert) opinion, an author–particularly a self-publishing author–shouldn’t think about genre at all until after the manuscript is completely written.  I’m not saying that if you have a project underway you should intentionally scrub all thought of genre from your mind, but I am saying that your novel or book of poems or illustrated children’s book should be written the way it demands to be written, and those demands evolve over time as the characters and plot take on life of their own.  A book should not be written as a slave to notions of genre and all the expectations that go along with those notions.

genre book covers

The true importance of genre comes into play after the manuscript is written.  At that point, yes, you can take genre under consideration in reshaping whatever needs to be reshaped in order to reach masterful perfection–if you want, if that proves helpful to you–and you can take notes from the authors you admire whose works exert influence upon your source of inspiration.  But the best part is when the manuscript is done being a manuscript and has become a book you’re willing to send out into the world, because the best part happens when you start crafting something else entirely: your marketing strategy.

Genre is one of the most important discovery tools out there for authors of all stripes and colors.  In terms of importance, it’s right up there with personal recommendations and an attractive book cover–and even the most attractive of book covers doesn’t do much for sales if it doesn’t represent the tone and content of the book, giving hints and clues as to what the reader will find there.  And that’s … kind of the same wheelhouse as genre, isn’t it?   Genre is so fundamental to book discoverability that booksellers and watchdogs don’t just break down how many people buy books because of genre, but how many people buy books because of a highly specific genre–whether that’s science fiction, fantasy, romance, nonfiction, crime fiction, or any other of a number of genres available for discussion.

You can put genre to work in the marketing process first and foremost by ensuring that your marketing strategy lines up with your book’s genre–or genres.  Hybrid and cross-genre works are gaining ground in a crowded marketplace looking for fresh approaches to literature, so don’t be afraid to embrace the multi-dimensionality of your work–you just might have to use language that touches on the buzzwords of both categories in your promotional blog posts, tweets, and metadata.  And regardless of the genre of the book you’re publishing, you need to employ the language of genre in pretty much every scrap of promotion you put together.  Whether it’s in an on-air interview or in a press release or in the description you upload with your book trailer to YouTube, genre is your ally.  The more you talk about it, the more your book will turn up in the discussions–and indexed search results on Google and Bing–and that’s good news both for you and for your readers.

Never dismiss the importance of genre!  Just … don’t let your work be defined by it.  Your book enriches its genre, and informed the dimensions of what its genre or genres will be defined by in the future.

Thanks for reading.  If you have any other ideas, I’d love to hear them.  Drop me a line in the comments section below and I’ll respond as quickly as I can.  ♠


Kelly

ABOUT KELLY SCHUKNECHT: Kelly Schuknecht is the Executive Vice President of Outskirts Press. In addition to her contributions to the Outskirts Press blog at blog.outskirtspress.com, Kelly and a group of talented marketing experts offer book marketing services, support, and products to not only published Outskirts Press authors, but to all authors and professionals who are interested in marketing their books and/or careers. Learn more about Kelly on her blog, kellyschuknecht.com

 

Book Readings: They’re About Relationships, Not Just Sales

This month we’ve been exploring the topic of preparing for and giving a book reading to help boost your marketing, your self-confidence, and to expand your comfort zone. The best way to gain a standing in your fans (and potential fans minds) is to see and hear you stand before them and share your story with them. Once you’ve given a passionate reading of your story before an audience, your readers will see the passion inside you that drove you to write the story in the first place, creating a connection that readers don’t often get to have with authors of their favorite books.

book reading
Lauren Weisberger reads at Books & Books (FL), July 19

If you think about it, as readers, we often get so consumed by the story and the characters that the author never comes to mind. I personally think that well-written pieces should have that effect on readers, one where the reader feels as though they’re inside the story and can’t hear the author’s, but only the character’s voices. However, once I’ve already fallen in love with a story, I find myself looking into these authors to find out more about them. I want to know how they knew so much about the history of jazz music in New Orleans, or about the intricacies of youth tennis academies, the mechanics of telephone switchboards, or the cobblestone streets of European cities. It gets to the point where I would give anything to sit down and pick the author’s brain to see if any of the characters in their stories were autobiographical, or if they grew up in the city the story took place in, etc. etc.

Just think of people who haven’t randomly stumbled upon your story, haven’t had the chance to have already been consumed by it, and don’t know anything about you. A book reading is your chance to convince those readers that they must have this book, that they must read it, and that they must also tell their fellow bibliophiles all about it.

While performing a reading with the kind of passion that can captivate an audience may terrify some more asocial writers, know that you’re not alone. I often dread social obligations and parties, choosing to shadow a more extroverted, socially affluent friend – however, that’s often because those gatherings are focused on small talk and catching up that I find generally uncomfortable and forced. The opportunity to speak, uninterrupted about something you love seems less intimidating for just that reason – I don’t have to force anything, it’s something I naturally love speaking about. A book reading allows me to prepare what to say in advanced in a way that doesn’t seem contrived, but is just a given part of the expected performance. When I am forced to interact with my audience, it is on the level of answering questions about something that I am deeply passionate about, which is my writing. For these reasons, while preparing for a putting on a book reading may bring about feelings of anxiety and general unease, know that the sense of satisfaction you’ll receive from having the opportunity to give your story a voice, and to gain readers who will stick with you for life will make it all worth it.


Thank you for reading!  If you have any questions, comments, suggestions, or contributions, please use the comment field below or drop us a line atselfpublishingadvice@gmail.com.  And remember to check back each Wednesday for your weekly dose of marketing musings from one indie, hybrid, and self-published author to another. ♠

KellyABOUT KELLY SCHUKNECHT: Kelly Schuknecht is the Executive Vice President of Outskirts Press. In addition to her contributions to the Outskirts Press blog at blog.outskirtspress.com, Kelly and a group of talented marketing experts offer book marketing services, support, and products to not only published Outskirts Press authors, but to all authors and professionals who are interested in marketing their books and/or careers. Learn more about Kelly on her blog, kellyschuknecht.com. 10:00 AM

Book Readings: Making a Success of the Big Day

Okay, so now you’ve committed to putting on a book reading, and here comes the big day!

Last week, we went over how one prepares for a book reading, but it’s just as important to break down what will happen on the big day itself!

poetry reading

First of all,

  1. SHOW UP.

No excuses. Set aside this time slot and stay committed to it.

Even if there are far less people in attendance than you expected when you do arrive, do not let them down. Give them the same reading you’d give a sold-out theater.

Also, bring your family or some close friends along with you – this guarantees that you’ll at least have some sort of very attentive audience, no matter what.

  1. Be Professional.

There’s a lot that goes under this heading, because being professional is so very important when trying to appeal to new readers and not let down old fans.

Show up on time and start on time – obviously. Don’t keep your audience waiting, some of them may have families or other engagements that they planned around this event.

Do not talk down to your audience, especially to those asking questions who haven’t read your book. Being pretentious won’t sell you books, so even if someone’s question seems silly to you, answer it genuinely and in a way that doesn’t insult their intelligence.

It’s important that you dress well, as well as dress to fit the venue. It may be over the top to show up to a coffee shop in a suit and tie, or to book store in ripped jeans and a tee-shirt.

I can’t think of anything more unprofessional than forgetting to thank your audience and the venue. This can be brief, but it shows that you respect the people who have taken time out of their day to watch you, or who have coordinated with you the weeks leading up to the reading to put on the event.

  1. Get live photos!

If it’s not on social media, then it probably didn’t happen. For those who are too far across the country to make it, but are friends with you on Facebook or follow your Instagram/Twitter, it’s still nice to “see” (even if it’s on a screen) that you’re out there telling your story!

  1. Feel Gratitude

Selling ANY books is something you should be excited about. So you brought 20 copies and only sold 5? That’s FIVE more readers you didn’t have before.

Be grateful for the opportunity given to you by the venue, and by the listeners.

  1. Don’t get yourself down if things go wrong.

Planning out a script at home and reading it to your cat will never be the same as the real thing.

Maybe the mic won’t work, maybe you’ll forget a pen to sign the books, maybe you’ll stutter over the answer to a question.

IT’S OKAY. You’re only human, and so is your audience. Take any potential slip ups in stride, but also feel free to lavishly celebrate if all goes exactly according to plan.

  1. Last but not least, ENJOY yourself.

It’s no small secret that many writers can be sort of recluse. A book reading shouldn’t just be strictly used as a marketing technique, but it should also serve the purpose of getting you out of your shell, speaking freely with an audience of potentially interested readers, and knowing that when you walk away you will have gained a better understanding of yourself as an author and as a person.

It’s not often that you get the chance to stand before others and talk about such an incredible accomplishment that you’ve maybe only shared with your publisher, family, close friends, etc.


Thank you for reading!  If you have any questions, comments, suggestions, or contributions, please use the comment field below or drop us a line atselfpublishingadvice@gmail.com.  And remember to check back each Wednesday for your weekly dose of marketing musings from one indie, hybrid, and self-published author to another. ♠

KellyABOUT KELLY SCHUKNECHT: Kelly Schuknecht is the Executive Vice President of Outskirts Press. In addition to her contributions to the Outskirts Press blog at blog.outskirtspress.com, Kelly and a group of talented marketing experts offer book marketing services, support, and products to not only published Outskirts Press authors, but to all authors and professionals who are interested in marketing their books and/or careers. Learn more about Kelly on her blog, kellyschuknecht.com. 10:00 AM

Six Steps to Hosting a Successful Book Reading Event!

As an established author, one may come to notice a seemingly inevitable plateau or decline in book sales as time goes on. There are ways, however, to re-engage your fan base and reinvigorate your marketing strategies. One terrific, simple way to do this is to arrange a book reading at your local bookstore, library, coffee shop, university or school, etc.

It is important–whether or not your book is hot off the press–to keep your audience engaged, but also to keep yourself actively engaged in promoting and selling your book. Not only do fans of your work want to see you in person, a book reading can also drum up potential fans who would not have otherwise heard of your piece!

So…the question you may have is, how does one prepare for a book reading?

Come Prepared

  1.  Pick 4 or 5 captivating passages to really draw in your audience. Practice reading these passages to friends, to a mirror, or even to your cat if you feel so inclined. If you want to utilize the camera feature on your smartphone or computer, you can even film yourself to see how your performance will appear to others.

Be Confident, Comfortable, and Relatable

  1.  A great way to relate to your potential readers is to provide your personal reasons for writing the story, or the inspiration behind it. Make sure to come up with key talking points if you’re going to take this approach so that you can talk freely without a  script–appearing confident and comfortable will further inspire people to give your book a chance!

Keep Your Audience Engaged

  1. Make sure to keep a close eye on your audience: if you’ve only made it through some of your material but notice that the crowd is getting restless or checking their phones, change gears and do a Q & A to keep them actively participating. If you’re too busy staring down at your script or book, you’ll miss important body language cues that could help you gauge where you should direct your attention, or perhaps encourage you to take up a more captivating tone or to make better eye contact.

Don’t waste a precious opening by reading out a long list of names, thanking those who helped you publish your book and risk putting your audience to sleep–instead, lure them in, grab their attention, answer their questions, THEN thank whoever you need to thank.

Anticipate Obvious Questions

  1. Don’t fumble when people ask you “What does the title mean?” or “Was the character inspired by a real person?”, etc. etc.

Also, repeat the questions to the audience, you want everyone to know what you’re responding to, not just the person posing the question.

Don’t Be Afraid to Get Creative with Location

  1. Remember that bookstores are not the only places to find potential readers. There are a myriad of potentially relevant locations for you to speak at which could span from a woman’s shelter to a community garden to a prison, etc. etc. If your book is about long distance hiking, try a local gear store. The key is, start close to home!

Get the contact information for whatever venue you’re looking to speak at: manager’s name, phone number, and email are great places to start! Describe how your book reading could benefit the business by drawing in customers, resonate with the store’s target customers, increase the likelihood that those there for the book reading will also shop at the store after the event.

Advertise Your Event!

  1. Make sure to publicize your event: flyers, social media posts, mention it in your blog, send a press release to local shopping guides or community calendars.

Remember above all else, it is not up to book stores to sell books, but authors themselves! Be active in the process of marketing and selling your book and the success of your book sales will reflect your hard work!

book reading
[ book readings are a great way to drum up interest in your book! ]

Thank you for reading!  If you have any questions, comments, suggestions, or contributions, please use the comment field below or drop us a line atselfpublishingadvice@gmail.com.  And remember to check back each Wednesday for your weekly dose of marketing musings from one indie, hybrid, and self-published author to another. ♠

KellyABOUT KELLY SCHUKNECHT: Kelly Schuknecht is the Executive Vice President of Outskirts Press. In addition to her contributions to the Outskirts Press blog at blog.outskirtspress.com, Kelly and a group of talented marketing experts offer book marketing services, support, and products to not only published Outskirts Press authors, but to all authors and professionals who are interested in marketing their books and/or careers. Learn more about Kelly on her blog, kellyschuknecht.com. 10:00 AM