A few weeks ago I responded to an email from an author working on their debut novel. Notice how I said author, not aspiring author. You’re an author/writer/whatever if you put words on the page, people. Don’t get it twisted!
Anyway, looking back over my email, I thought the advice might be worth sharing with everyone. I’m by no means a pro at marketing (and I’m a huge slacker), but here are a few really basic tips to get you started. There are so many fabulous people out there who can go really in-depth with marketing techniques, however, and I highly recommend you keep reading and keep learning. As with writing, you’re never done being a student here!
LET’S DO THIS.
Tip of the Iceberg Marketing Stuff for Indie Authors
As far as marketing goes, it’s an ongoing battle and probably everybody’s least favourite part about self-publishing. Nobody likes it. You are 100% not alone in this. Well. Okay. Maybe. I know some authors who actually do marketing for a living or have a lot of experience with SEO projects, so for them it’s a breeze. I personally don’t enjoy it, but I’m getting there.
I recommend having a platform on all the social media websites you feel comfortable on. I’ve found a lot of readers on Facebook and made connections with great book bloggers on Instagram, neither of which I generally use in my personal life. Twitter has been #1 for me in terms of connecting with the author community, finding tips and trick about publishing, and basically garnering a support circle for this process.
Hashtags I recommend checking out:
#bookmarketingchat – it is hosted every Wednesday night by Rachel Thompson and usually a guest. Invaluable advice. I always learn something there.
#writetip, #pubtip, #querytip are also great tags to check out, even if you won’t be querying your piece. You can still learn a lot from agents because they are steering authors toward being the best they can be. Never hurts to find a way to apply their advice to your work.
When I first started self-publishing, I paid for cover reveal tours, book release tours, etc. Personally, I find the only blog tour that has value for your $$ are review tours, because then at least you are getting reviews out of it. Most blog tours don’t do much for sales, but they help with exposure.
Finally, if you haven’t already, start a blog. I’m AWFUL at posting content stuff, but I try to share my book reviews and to-read lists. Try to be active so readers can connect with you, or at least see who you are.
And most of all, don’t be a marketing machine. Just be a real human being. People are super turned off by automatic DMs when they follow you. I personally unfollow people who just tweet links to their books or constantly RT links to other books. It’s nice to share people’s buy links, but if that’s all you do, it makes for a boring follow.
I hope that helps! If you have any questions or just want to chat, my inbox is always open.