Your book readers are moving online, and so should you. More and more buying decisions are made online, and virtual storefronts make it easy for customers to go from browsing to purchasing within a single click of a button.
As soon as you integrate virtual activities into your book marketing plan, you’ll have access to the ever-expanding global marketplace. The more people you can reach, the higher your chance of increasing your book sales.
Finding Virtual Outlets
Before you start reaching out to potential readers via the Internet, make a list of the niches and industries that cover content related to your book. Assess how your content can help them and their readers.
Then send a pitch email, or query letter, to the bloggers and content creators that could be interested in your book’s topic or your author story. Your pitch should include the benefit you and your content will provide to their readers. Be transparent about what type of collaboration you’re hoping to create.
Here are some ideas for getting the story about your book out there.
Use the keywords associated with your book (and blog) to find relevant blog posts or website pages. Then, send a request to the blogger or site owner for a link back to your book’s landing page or a blog post you’ve written.
This technique is especially useful when you’ve blogged your book, and you have a blog post about a complimentary topic.
Don’t forget to include a link about your book at the bottom of your piece so, when people like what you’ve written in your post, they can easily find out where to buy the book.
Write Guest Posts
Guest blogging has been around for a long-time. Although there are lots of competing opinions about the effectiveness of this SEO strategy, it definitely still works as an audience building tactic.
The more guest posts you write, the greater chance you have of building an audience outside your immediate circle of fans and contacts.
Focus on targeting influencers, but don’t forget to reach out to less influential bloggers that are complementary to your subject matter expertise. Their blog audience may be smaller, but you never know where these collaboration opportunities may lead.
Provide a Q & A
If you don’t want to write a guest blog post, offer to supply other bloggers with a written Q&A about the content of your book. They can provide the questions they feel their audience would most want answered.
As long as your content offers help, advice, inspiration, or entertainment value to the audience, you’ve got a good chance of being taken up on your offer. This Q&A approach works exceptionally well for nonfiction book content on business websites.
Be a Podcast Guest or Appear in a Video Interview
Written content isn’t the only way to connect with a broader audience. If you don’t host your own podcasts or video channel, being a guest on another show is an excellent way to gain exposure—and to do so in a different medium. It’s also an effective way to gain broadcasting experience and becoming more confident doing live audio or video events.
Start by being featured on fledgling shows. They’ll be more open to your offer of a guest appearance. You can use their shows as your training ground for reaching out to show hosts with larger audiences.
Subscribe to Podcast Guests, and you’ll receive a free weekly email. Each update includes a list of shows looking for podcast guests and a list of guests available to be interviewed.
Offer Prize Giveaways
As part of your video and podcast appearances or guest blog posts, offer a free prize giveaway. If your books are already available, you can provide a free copy. But if you’re trying to drum up pre-launch momentum, offer a gift certificate or a piece of related merchandise.
Search for book-related blogs that already host giveaway events, or search for other bloggers in your niche and reach out to them. Pitch the idea of hosting a joint event offering your book as the giveaway.
Become Comfortable with Self-Promotion
Each of these activities sows seeds across different platforms that have the potential to lead to book sales or raise your profile as a subject-matter expert in your niche.
Many introverted authors find it challenging to engage in self-promotion. When another person features your book, it creates a level of distance between you and the promotional activity. You will feel more comfortable about sharing their content about you than tooting your own horn.
What you need is an effective shift in perspective. Instead of saying, “Look at me and my achievements,” you can say, “Look what this other person is saying about me and my achievements.”
Have you found an effective way to build buzz about your book online? Share your tips and tactics with me below in a comment. And if you found this article useful, please share it with your followers.
About the Author
Jay Artale abandoned her corporate career to become a digital nomad and full-time writer. She’s an avid blogger and a nonfiction author helping travel writers and travel bloggers achieve their self-publishing goals. Join her at Birds of a Feather Press where she shares tips, advice, and inspiration to writers with an independent spirit.
Photo courtesy of ANGKANA SUTTIKUL