A Marketing Map: Tools and Tips for Self-Published Authors

Filed in Marketing Your Book by on May 31, 2013 4 Comments

Marketing your bookYou have written your book, selected the cover, font style, worked with our crackerjack production and editorial team—even received your first copies of the book.  All of the sudden you’ve got that feeling in your stomach; you know the one where panic takes over, and you feel like you are dropping on a roller coaster?  You realize you have to actually sell your book!  At this point you are thinking, “The fun part was writing the book, now is the hard part,” or  “I don’t know how to sell a book!” I hear this all the time in self-publishing.  Relax! You have already done the hard part. Marketing is where it gets fun!

Tell your book’s story

One simple tactic is to think of Marketing as the telling of your book’s story. People need to know about your book before they can buy your book.  Many self-published authors get frustrated when their book isn’t sold in every bookstore or it’s not flying off shelves in the first month. Keep in mind that it takes 3 to 5 years to make your book a strong seller.   That means 3-5 years of networking, marketing and “elbow grease” from the author to grow the book’s exposure. Start at the local level and branch out as you feel more confident in telling your “story.” We know that most authors cannot spend 40 hours a week marketing their book; plan to spend just 30 minutes a day working on your marketing. This small investment of time every day will keep your stress down and give you more confidence in your journey.

Building Relationships

Marketing boils down to one simple thing—building relationships. Start by creating a list of 100 key media contacts (local radio, TV and newspaper contacts). Call, email, fax, or mail them 10 to 15 times a year. If you have a Press Release, send them a copy (available for purchase through Xulon Press). Have you done an interview? Send your contacts a memo about it. Also, make sure key contacts are informed about upcoming Book Signing events! The idea is to keep you and your book in their mind. Show them people are standing up and taking notice of your book!

The Rule of Seven is an old marketing adage. It says that a prospect needs to see or hear your marketing message at least 7 times before they take action and buy from you. Now, the number 7 isn’t cast in stone, but the truth of the Rule of 7 is you can’t just engage in one marketing activity and then be done.  As an example, think about how many times you see or hear advertising for your favorite drink or snack.  Quite a bit, isn’t it?

Keep in mind that marketing must be an ongoing process in order for it to be successful. That is why Xulon Press authors each receive a free Marketing Consultation with their Marketing Coach.  If you have not scheduled a consultation, call TODAY!  He can be reached toll free at 1.855.519.1660. International callers please call 407.949.3054.


About the Author ()

Terry’s background includes the roles of Account Executive for Standard Publishing, General Manager for the 3rd largest Christian Store in the USA, and former Executive Pastor. He is currently working on a marketing book and children’s book, both to be published through Xulon Press over the next year.

Comments (4)

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  1. Good reminder especially for those of us who are eager to forego the tedium of marketing in favor of writing the next book.

  2. avatar Jo Anne Alcott Buckley says:

    My first book has gone to press. It is a book written from my immagination of the life of a scribe living during Jesus’ time. The name of the book is “Blessings for John Mark”

    • avatar Terry Haines says:

      Congratulations on your book! I hope you find some of the marketing tips on our blog to be helpful. Please let me know if I can be of any assistance as you put together your marketing plan. I can be reached at 1.855.519.1660.

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