Taking a cue from some popular good news/bad news jokes, an author sends a manuscript to a publisher. A few months go by, the publisher calls and says, “The good news is, we’ve published your book. It’s now on Amazon, Barnes & Noble and available for distribution to over 30,000 outlets in both print and electronic formats. The bad news is, all you have to do now is promote it.”
Of course, this isn’t funny. It’s not even a joke. It’s a stark reality of the business of being an author. Today, authors have to be more than writers. They also have to be entrepreneurs, or author-preneurs as the case may be. It doesn’t matter if you go with a publisher or travel the entire self-publishing route yourself. As the author, you must promote your book. An author’s success is often measured in terms of books sales. The more money a book earns, the more successful you are as an author.
Think of it this way, if you are a parent, did your responsibility end with the birth of your child? Of course not! Your child needed to be nurtured and raised to maturity. It is hard work! So it is with your book. Your book has been born (published). Now it’s time to raise it (promote it.) It took 18 years to raise your child. Hopefully, it won’t take as long to promote your book, but it will take time and you must be patient and diligent in your efforts. To give you an idea, it’s a common practice to send out review copies of your books. Did you know that it could take anywhere from three months to three years before your a review might appear?
John Kremer, book marketing expert and author of 1001 Ways to Market Your Books, advises in his basic Rule of Five:
All it takes is five book promotions a day. Really, that’s all it takes. Mail a letter. Send out a news release. Phone someone. Take an editor to lunch. Contact the media.
It doesn’t require much time — 15 to 20 minutes is enough — but it can make a world of difference on how well your book sells.
Do everything you can to keep your book’s visibility in the front of your mind and in the public eye. Your effort will not go unnoticed and you won’t be sorry.