Formulating your pre-publication marketing campaign
If you’ve been building your profile as a writer for some time, you probably have a mailing list in place already. Sending out advanced review copies (ARCs) of your book a couple of weeks before launch day is a great way to encourage readers to give your book a shot.
In exchange for sharing the book for free, you should request a review from your readers. The first few reviews often decide the life cycle of a book, so be clear with your readers, and let them know that they’ll be doing you a big favor.
If you’re an absolute beginner, don’t worry! Even sharing your book with friends and family is a good start. Since the strength of your personal platform will be practically negligible at this point, seek out places where your target audience is likely to hang out. In fact, use all the marketing channels covered in the previous lesson—like your social media presence and relevant forums—to reach out to readers.
Here’s how one self-published author managed to leverage his existing readers in an effective way:
“I went on Goodreads and Amazon and for every reviewer who liked the book, I messaged or commented them and said: Thank you so much for sharing your thoughts on the book. If you’re interested, I’d like to thank you by offering you a free Advanced Review Copy (ARC) of the sequel.“
In his case, he already had a reader base, but that doesn’t mean you can’t use similar methods to reach out to your potential future readers.
Sending your ARC to influencers
A professional book publicist can help you secure press coverage and solicit reviews from influential bloggers. While a digital ARC is obviously cheaper and faster for you, investing in a few printed copies of your book can increase your chances of getting reviews from influential bloggers. Keep in mind that they have hundreds of books submitted to them every month, so you may want to concentrate on asking readers to post reviews on Amazon and Goodreads.
As a writer, marketing and promotional activities will be a part of your everyday life. A well designed pre-publication marketing campaign will put your efforts into overdrive and generate interest leading up to the launch of your book.
That’s all for today! We’ll be back tomorrow with our final lesson where you’ll learn what an author platform is, why it’s important, and how you can build yours.
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