I’m a huge fan of streamlining work. This was a major problem when I was working as an attorney and had to account for every freaking minute I worked, but that’s not what you’re here to read about. When I first started self-publishing, I did a ton of research on marketing and launching my book. Okay, that’s a lie. With my first novel, I pushed the ‘publish’ button and sat back and waited for the sales to roll in. Obviously, that isn’t what happened. With my next project, I hit the internet and started researching. To be perfectly honest, I wasn’t impressed with most of the marketing plans I managed to find. They were often too theoretical. And many suggestions for marketing just don’t work for me – a writer living in a country whose inhabitants doesn’t speak the language in which I write.
Over the years, I’ve developed my own marketing plan. I usually take two weeks off of writing once I have a completed manuscript. These two weeks are used exclusively for marketing. What do I do during those two weeks? Here’s my plan:
Book Launch Marketing Plan
|At least 2 weeks prior to publish date (book should be available on pre-order)||Pre-Release Blitz or Cover Reveal||Tour Company||How many pre-orders?
How many readers marked the book ‘to read’ on Goodreads?
|Newsletter||MailChimp||Reduce pre-release price as incentive for newsletter subscribers|
|As soon as have completed manuscript (I don’t like to send ARCs)||Ask for reviews||Reviewer 1||When requested & response|
|Reviewer 2, etc.|
(Schedule earlier, prepare a promo page for the book with all relevant information)
|Guest Posts||Blog name|
|Book Tour||Tour company|
|2 weeks – 1 month after launch||Review Tour||Tour company||Keep track of number of reviews to determine if this is a company you want to use again|
|1 – 2 months after launch (schedule as soon as have 10 reviews)||Email Newsletter Promo||Many books
|Keep track of how many books sold for each promo to decide for yourself which email newsletter promos work the best for your book|
Oh man, how annoyed are you that I haven’t included a list of reviewers and blogs? Sorry, but I didn’t exclude names to be a jerk. I haven’t included any reviewers or bloggers as my list is going to be different than your list. You need to find bloggers that not only specialize in your genre (romance, mystery, whatever) but with whom your style clicks. And once you connect with a reviewer or blogger, hold on to them and treasure that relationship!
When looking for those wonderful bloggers, don’t just send out those massive emails for review requests! If you need some hints, check out my blog article on how to request a review.
Blog tour companies also specialize in certain genres. Find an operator who is well known within the genre you write. Wondering how to do a blog tour? Check out my article on how to have a successful blog tour. The review tour is scheduled later than the release as I’m too impatient. I want to get my book out there as soon as possible after it’s ready, but bloggers need time to read. Most blog tour companies require a minimum of 6 weeks between the ARC being ready and the date of the blog tour.
And finally, it’s important to never stop learning and researching. I still read every article I come across on social media about book marketing. You never know what little gem you will find! Please feel free to share your marketing tips in the comments.