I think it’s a crying shame that many authors seem to carry out book marketing through gritted teeth.
It seems like book marketing has something of a bad rep in the author community.
At best, many authors see promoting their work as a necessary evil that needs to be carried out.
At worst, people see it as utterly soul-destroying, not to mention many other phrases that aren’t suitable to be written here!
What if I were to tell you that book marketing is something to feel excited about?
You’d see me as crazy, right?
Well, I’m confident that if you give book marketing a fair trial, and come at it without preconceptions, it’s something you’ll find exciting and interesting.
Here are my main reasons why.
Book Marketing Lets You Experiment
If you’re an author, you’re creative at heart. Someone who likes to create something new and do things differently.
Rather than being the sterile activity it’s often presented as book marketing is the perfect chance to indulge your creativity.
While the creative choices you make for your book itself are fairly set in stone, your book marketing choices aren’t.
You get endless attempts at writing cool ad copy or coming up with some good creative visuals for your work.
If a social media post promoting your book falls flat, you can simply delete it and try again. That’s not exactly easy when it comes to elements like your book cover!
Aside from the surface-level creativity, such as the copy you write and the visuals you choose, marketing your book allows you to tap into something deeper.
At its heart, marketing is something like applied psychology. The best marketers seek to understand people’s hopes and desires and effectively speak to them.
If you’re feeling down about marketing, try and focus on how it lets you be creative and experiment.
When you start to see marketing as a worthwhile, creative pursuit just like writing is, you’ll start to feel better about it.
Promoting Your Book Can Lead to Great Things
Sometimes, it’s easy to get stuck in the weeds when it’s time to promote your book.
Filling out your fiftieth book promotion site application form can feel tedious. That’s entirely understandable.
However, there isn’t a type of work on Earth that doesn’t have some element of routine and drudgery to it. That’s inevitable.
What’s not inevitable is the way you frame the mundane elements of book marketing.
One effective reframe you should try is seeing marketing as a stepping stone that brings you closer to your eventual dreams as an author.
For example, to go back to those book promotion site forms, try and imagine the face of a reader who becomes a fan after finding your book. Isn’t that person worth trying to reach?
Or if you’re in the nonfiction space, think about giving an amazing Ted Talk as a result of your book. Doesn’t that make redrafting your book description that little bit more tolerable?
Often, focusing on the bigger picture makes the smaller, more tedious book marketing tasks a lot easier.
Keep your eye on the eventual prize. Think of book marketing tasks as planting seeds. Amazing and beautiful things may grow from them.
A Good Book Marketer is a Matchmaker
In some sections of the author community, book marketing is seen as antithetical to the creative craft of writing.
Writers are seen as pure, artistic souls, while book marketers are seen as slick salesmen looking to make a quick buck.
In reality, that’s absolute nonsense.
Book marketing is nothing more or less than trying to get books into the hands of the people who will love them the most.
Isn’t that something noble? Something worth doing well?
A good marketer is a matchmaker. They are trying to find the right match between reader and book. And that’s no small thing.
Think about a book you truly love. Hasn’t it added something special to your life? And the lives of many other people who have had the joy of reading it?
If you have any hangups about marketing your work, cast them aside.
There’s nothing noble about being a starving artist.
When you promote your book, you not only help it get the attention it deserves, but you stand to make people’s lives a lot more enjoyable in the process.
Try and hold onto that if you ever feel less than enthused about marketing your book.
Marketing Campaigns Can Refill Your Writing Battery
As much as we love and need to write regularly, we are human beings, not machines.
Everything in the natural world has its season. As writers, we can’t be expected to prioritize output every day.
Just as it’s important to write regularly, it can also be beneficial to have times where we don’t write. Book marketing campaigns can provide an ideal change of pace.
When you dedicate a serious period of time to promoting your books, rather than writing them, you let your creative juices fill back up.
You not only get a break from the pressure of meeting a certain word count each day, allowing you to eventually return to daily writing sessions with a new sense of vigor. You also get to see your book become tangible and experience success through your marketing efforts, whether carried out on your own or as part of a team.
Seeing your book marketing activities bear fruit naturally increases your enthusiasm for writing another book, eventually leading to a virtuous cycle of book writing and promotion.
Four Steps to Take
Hopefully, you now see how marketing can be an exciting and creative activity in and of itself.
If you’re feeling good about marketing at the moment, why not seize that feeling and translate it into action?
Here are four steps you can take relating to the information you’ve just learned:
- Brainstorm creative copy. Try and come up with five pieces of promotional copy for your book. Check out some book ads on Amazon or Facebook if you need inspiration.
- Dream big. Could you make your book marketing the start of something special? Research five events you could one day speak at, and brainstorm five other things you could offer through your book, such as access to a course or even just signing up to your mailing list.
- Imagine your ideal reader. Take some time to think about your book’s perfect reader. Who are they? What do they do? What are their dreams and problems? Where could you reach such a person?
- Plan an example campaign. Have some fun with scheduling out an example marketing campaign for one of your books. How many days would you dedicate to each activity? What kind of planning would you need to do?
Book marketing isn’t a necessary evil, or something indie authors should carry out through gritted teeth.
Far from it.
Instead, I hope you now see book marketing as the exciting, creative pastime it truly is. One which can lead you to amazing levels of success you might not have dared to dream about.