Writing a book is an amazing experience. But the technical details of marketing and promoting that book hardly ever is. Even so, after bringing the project to life, it’s time to offer it to the masses.
But how? The great news is that there are many free and affordable tools for DIY-ers who are looking for the best results for the lowest cost. However, when it comes to PR and marketing, whatever doesn’t cost money will cost time, and vice versa.
In any case, here are five tools that can help you save on both.
If you’ve been following my kitty-adventures at Alexis Chateau PR, then you might notice we use Mailchimp to send out our newsletters. Alex uses it to manage the Alexis Chateau PR mailing list, and I use it to manage the media queries mailing list. You should use it, too!
But don’t get carried away. Use newsletters to update your readers only on the real highlights and opportunities you have going on. Filling our inboxes with mundane day-to-day tasks and updates that would only be interesting to you or the people pushing your book, will only lose our interest over time.
Someone asked us recently, “Are people even still on Twitter???” It’s a valid question considering how little we read these days. Even 140 characters is a little too much for some people’s attention spans.
But that’s a good thing. Why? Because that means Twitter is exactly where you need to go to find people who will gladly read 140 characters or more. Those are the people who need more than Instagram pictures, and Facebook videos, as entertainment.
The indie author community on Twitter is pretty strong; and there are tons of readers looking for new books, and itching to share their reviews. You just need to find and follow the right people.
If you want to hone in on readers even more, then Goodreads is your best bet. Goodreads is the social media website for book lovers. There is quite literally nothing else to do there but read, review, and recommend books.
If you’ve published an indie book, be sure to register your book for an International Standard Book Number (ISBN). Don’t know how? We can help! Just ask. Without that, your book is unlikely to show up in Goodreads or other major book search engines and platforms.
Goodreads also allows authors to run ads for their books, yet so many don’t use it. Indie authors are often reluctant to throw money behind their book, but if you don’t believe in your book enough to spend money on it, why should we spend money to buy it? #FoodForThought 🤔
While it’s great to hang out with the wordsmiths and book lovers, Facebook has its purposes. For one, pretty much everyone is on Facebook – including the people whose Twitter pages have been inactive for years on end.
Not every reader bothers with impersonal social media platforms, like Twitter; but many will use Facebook to keep in touch with family and friends. Google’s search engine also displays Facebook pages as a result, so if your book doesn’t have a Facebook page, you’re already missing out on online opportunities and free SEO
Another great opportunity Facebook provides is paid promotions. Just remember to fine-tune your demographics to reach the people most likely interested in your book. Focus more on the type of people who have already shown an interest in your books, instead of just the readers you want to reach.
Media relations is the most useful service we provide to help indie authors build credibility, boost their visibility, and grow their audience. It might not be an easy task to take on, on your own, but that’s what we’re here for.
If you write nonfiction, then media relations is especially important to build your credibility. Even if your book is autobiographical, or shares life lessons, there are lifestyle journalists out there waiting to hear your story. You just have to find them.
Through media relations we’ve learned that the key is to promote the author, not the book. Since most journalists provide a link back to a URL of your choice, and will give you a title, as say ‘Author of black CATastrophy’, you have the perfect opportunity to give your work an honorable mention without pushing a hard sale.
Through social media, newsletters, and media relations, you can take your book from small fry to big kahuna. All it takes is time, dedication… … … or just hiring black CATastrophy to do it for you.
About the Author
Shadow the PR Cat is the Goodwill Ambassador at Alexis Chateau PR, and head of the firm’s indie author division. His job includes tweeting, taking selfies, rolling in catnip, and advocating for animal rights and social equality. Follow his kitty adventures on Twitter as @ShadowThePRcat.
About Alexis Chateau PR
Alexis Chateau PR is an independent public relations agency with a special interest in lifestyle brands. From education to entertainment to travel, we’ve worked with clients in all areas of the lifestyle industry since 2006.