The "Why" Behind the Book

By Noelle Stary 20 Lemons Marketing

Think about the last book you bought.  How did you hear about the book? Perhaps a friend told you to read it or the book caught your eye on the New York Times Best Seller List.  Now, ponder this:  Have you ever considered how important it is for the author and the publisher to promote the book and make YOU aware of its existence? Aware enough for you to pick up the book and buy it?  Have you thought about WHY the book resonates with you?  The following set of tips will help you figure out why and what you need to market your book and get your readers to start flipping those pages.

 Create a Plan:  Get out a calendar and set dates for all the materials and meetings that need to be completed in the 6 months before the book launch and in the 6 months following the launch.  Know the following:

Who is your audience?  Remember you need to let your audience know that you are here.  The average author sells about 200 books, how many are you looking to sell?

 Create a Website:  As an author looking to engage existing fans or bring in new ones, you need a way to keep people informed on what you’re looking for.  An excellent way to do this to create a website.  At the minimum, you want a website that features a picture of yourself, a picture of your books, your bio, links to where you can buy the book, book signings, speaking, engagements, and ways to contact you.  Under your contact information, you should have a link to sign up for a newsletter/email list, and links to social media, such as a Facebook Fan Page or Twitter.

Have a Photo: You should have a high-quality, flattering, and up-to-date photo of yourself in an electronic format to send to the media.  The photo should be either black-and-white or color.

Create a Press Kit:  The press kit should include your bio, intro release, and a few reasons that qualify YOU to write the book.  The purpose of the press kit is to capture the attention of a newspaper or magazine editor, or a contact for a speaking engagement.

 Create a Pitch Letter and Media Kit: Receiving good press for your book is extremely important.  However, in order for that to happen, you’ll have to create a Pitch Letter than can be sent to various members of the media.  The Pitch Letter should be addressed to a specific person, and clearly state in the letter why this person should want to find out more about you and your book.  Send this the pitch letter along with book to better open lines of communication with the media.

Create a Tour Schedule: A major component of a book launch is to do a book tour that promotes you, the author, and showcases your new book.  The tour should include interviews, book signings, and speaking engagements.  You should have postcards, bookmarks and business cards that promote the book, which can be given to the media and sent to bookstores as promotional material.

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