Thoughts and Marketing 4 Self Publishers

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Thoughts and Marketing 4 Self Publishers

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jun 6, 2009, 8:57pm

Relevant story: I had a friend of mine, a songwriter, journey to Nashville to get his work noticed and/or published. Of course the big publishing houses were not listening, but he was making in roads with various small songwriters and the owner of the bluebird cafe (where songwriters get noticed).

She invited him to a songwriter class on improving songwriting and discussions on marketing. One person brought up how do you protect your music from being stolen. Her response was: What does it matter if no one has heard of you? The biggest problem for people breaking in to the industry is to be heard. Give some away if you have to.

My Approach: Going solo is a slow process. The most important thing is the product. The better the book, the more the reader likes it, the more success you will have. I began my project with a very strong positive attitude. If at any time while writing my focus was waning or my energy was low, I would stop. I believe when your energy, enthusiasm, or confidence is high, the better quality of work you will do.

I suck as a writer, so I made sure I hired a good editor. I also had many people read it to give feedback on content and general writing suggestions. By the end everybody who read the book was happy with the content and writing errors were minimal.

Getting Noticed: This is my first book and my marketing is just starting to roll. I'm using createspace as my POD publisher and have my book posted on I figured when I searched for my book title, it would come up on the first page. Not so, It's buried. Even though no other book has my name, if a good selling title has something close, it pops up.

Here is what I am doing. I have little results to provide since my plan is just starting, but here it is: I have a small book, so I am making sure my price point stays under $10. Profit margin is far from my goal, getting books sold and creating buzz or attracting a large publisher is. More people are willing to take a chance on a book if it is under $10.

I have my list price at $11.95 and am trying to get actual selling price to $9.95 on, but that may not happen. If a book sells at my createspace store, my profit margin is higher. The only way they will find that site is by me marketing it. I am promoting a $3 off coupon code on my web site, yahoo groups, and book giveaways on Library thing. Final price is $8.95 and my profit is still over $3 per book.

I am taking advantage of LibraryThing's book giveaways. I am giving away 30 screen .pdf copies of my book for reviews. (can read good on screen, prints out fuzzy). I am also giving away 6 copies of the paperback. LibraryThing organizes the giveaways by number of copies, so the more you giveaway, the more likely people will see your book when they pull up the page. I would Highly suggest creating e-books and giving away more than 20.

The strategy of Free copies for reviews hinges on one thing: A good product. Good reviews equal good sales.

I have found another source for getting people to know your book exists: Google. Google has two programs I am investigating: Partner Program and Library Project. Partner allows you to provide a few pages of your book to be searched, and that information will be available to the search engine. For Book Library it allows you to provide basic bibliographic information about the book and some snippets. Below are the links.

If you have website, make sure you investigate google's webmaster tools. Give them a sitemap and see your placement on searches rise significantly. I am investigating Adwords, but the verdict is still out on that one. I am using the $25 credit and will see if anything productive comes out of it. I'm leary about its cost effectiveness.

On my website I have offered a free preview along with the $3 off coupon. Also on the website I have a page for book resellers. I am offering free shipping for purchases of 8 or more books and I will not have a buyback policy. Cost is %45 off list price (standard is 40%).

At the local Library I have given them two free copies to add to their collection. They want to put me in the state authors section but I am trying to get in the general population. We'll see how that works out.

As of yet no results. I will try to post what's working for me when things start to happen.

Hope this gives some new ideas to marketing your books!