In yesterday’s post I discussed the importance of book promotion and the ways in which I can prepare for and present my upcoming new release in ways that will attract readers to my book.
Even though I provide book promotion for other authors, I would not ever suggest that what I do is everything they need. I certainly cannot achieve all the book promotion I need on my own, either.
That’s why I believe it is necessary outsource some of my book promotion on a regular basis.
There are some excellent reasons to do so:
- Other people can do things I don’t know how to do
- Other people reach different audiences and followers
- Other people use different platforms than I do
- As I pointed out yesterday, people are far more inclined to take my word about someone else’s book than about my own.
In terms of what’s available, there are a number of options to consider:
Genre specific promotion: Some promoters focus on one or two genres and have invested significantly in reaching that specific audience.
Using this kind of promotion ensures that your book is shown to people most likely to be interested in it.
Things to consider: It’s generally not inexpensive. While you’re getting established and building awareness of your book or profile as an author, you can’t expect to break even.
Book blogs offer a variety of ways to promote your book.
Some offer a read and review service.
Some create posts from your book’s reviews and use that to generate publicity.
Others use their social media reach to promote with ads that may be created by them, or by you.
Things to consider: this is usually either free or inexpensive, but usually not genre-specific. It will put your book in front of readers, though.
Social media platforms all offer ways to use one of your posts to create an advertisement by paying to have it shown to people who don’t already follow you. This can help you get new followers, if not book sales.
Things to consider: the costs can add up if you’re not paying attention, and you set the price up front so that you pay regardless of whether or not your boosted post is actually successful.
Amazon Ads promise to show your book to readers in various ways.
You set up your promotion using your author central account, and set a “price per click” amount.
It is either genre or audience specific, and there are options for ways in which you might reach different readers.
Things to consider: your “price per click” amount is not a guarantee.
It is really more like a bid to compete with others wanting to advertise their book in the same genre or audience as yours. If you set your price per click too low, you’ll get very little response.
Amazon ads are also inclined to work sometimes and not others depending on the current algorithm over at the Zon, which means that the exact same ad that worked for you last month won’t work again now. Have fun working that out.
What I do: I tend do a bit of most of those things.
- I engage some genre specific promotion for my horror titles from time to time. I will also do this for my upcoming fantasy release. Some services are more effective than others, but there are two I have found to be really good.
- I also buy some promotional services through a multi-platform service that has a very good level of audience engagement for a variety of genres. This has proven to be very good promotion, and I will use that service again.
- I usually have Amazon ads running for two of my books at a time. I have mixed success with them and the results vary greatly, so this is not sufficient promotion to gain consistent sales.
Doing those things allows me to use my own Facebook and Twitter profiles sparingly. The last thing I want to do is sound like I am hawking my own wares all the time, as that is the the quickest way to put people off.
When I do post on my personal profiles, I try to maintain a fine balance.
- I generally try to stick to about one tweet in 50 for my own books. That will change this week, as I have a new release coming up. My ratio will change then to one in ten, which equals once a day.
- On Facebook, I avoid any more than one post a day about my own books, and always post via my page. From there, I share it onto my personal profile and into one or two groups that I own or administer, and where I engage regularly with other members.
What I don’t do:
- Boosted Facebook posts. In my experience, this is a total and utter waste of money. The actual audience reach of a boosted post has never been anywhere near what was estimated when I was setting up the promotion, and I don’t think it has ever won me a book sale.
- Use the same promotion or service every month. Variety is the spice of life, after all.
- Spend more than I can afford. This should be a no-brainer, and entirely self-explanatory.
Sadly, nothing is guaranteed. All you can do is try different things and see what works for you.
Obligatory disclaimer statements: because it is the 21st century and people can be nasty, it’s necessary for me to state the following:
- I don’t have all the answers. I’m simply stating what I do, why I do it, and what I have found to work or not. What works for me might not work for you, and vice versa: our books are different, and our readers probably are, too.
- This post is in no way designed to direct you to my book promotion services. If that is what you think of me, please do not seek to engage my services. It’s entirely possible that we may not be able to play together nicely.