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Marketing 101 for Authors

Rick Polson


I was on a fun radio show last night ––world-of-ink
where we talked marketing and authors. There are a few things that need to be repeated.

First, authors need to understand that their book is product just like a television, refrigerator or bag of chips. That means it needs to be marketed in a business way. And there are several ways to do that.

In order to understand where your audience reads, watches, listens to and surfs you need to do a survey. The survey should contain 10-15 multiple choice questions to get a feel where the people you have communicated to get their information and entertainment. Here are two questions that everyone can use:

When you turn the TV on, what do you look at first?
ABC/NBC/CBS/FOX Movies channels Sports channels Real life

When you listen to the radio, what do you listen to most?

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20 Steps For Book Marketing


20 Steps to gain exposure for your bookLiterary Lounge logo

1.Overview – What is the marketing plan for you?

You promote your last book,you promote all books of yours,you promote your website or you promote a book which is  free for a certain period of time.

2.Timing – For how long you are ready to run this campaign?

Only for launching,a certain period of time,seasonal(Christmas,Easter,summer holiday).

3.Budget and costs

– What budget do you have for paid advertising/PR/Marketing

-Can you support other costs:printing promotional materials,launching parties,travelling…

4.Publicity and PR

Set up a press kit with audio and video links, including press clippings and articles,have teasers that catches the attention.

5.Contact Local Media

Play the ”local writer” and contact local newspapers,magazines and radio local stations.

6.Contact National Media

Send press releases targeting cities and subject related magazines.

7.Book Reviewers

– send reviews copies for reviewers in various publications

-send reviews copies to book clubs and community groups targeting your genre


Write and submit articles to the print media: about the book, about the subject, about you as a writer and other hobbies, about writing process.

9.Speaking engagements

Make an offer for speaking at your local library, schools and organization and association if your book have a social impact.You can visit senior groups and senior homes for storytelling, children’s home care for children’s books.


Join a few social media channels and try to be active as much as you can.This is the way to build your brand and reputation online as an author.

11.Launch your book in local bookstores 

-Send press releases for the event to the local media, reading groups ,local librarians and invitations to friends.

-Send a thank you note to every single person who joined the event

-Donate a few books to your local library

12.Promotional materials

-have business cards and bookmarks with the cover, your website,your free ebook,your  x for the price of y if you have some other books

-spread the business cards out(offer them to libraries,bookstores,office supplier shops,hotels, the local supermarket

13.Word of mouth – It works the best.(family,friends, colleagues, neighbors)

Be sure you have a share with friend button on your website


Do it by target:

-by location(place of birth,place of living,where the action in your book take place)

– by subject and social issues if the book has such subplots in it

– by genre and interests

15.Co – Promotion

Target authors of the same genre for reviews,guest blogging and co-promotion

16.Cross Promotion

-A  book about meditation in the nature or healthy lifestyle can be sold in camp site’s little shops.

-A book on history of(a country) may be proposed for university studies in history of this country.

-A diet book can be promoted at your local gym or fitness club.


Only a small percent of yours sales can make a huge difference in people’s lives.Your book gains exposure and you will be proud to do a kind act(only if you are that kind of person who cares)

18.Short Stories Anthology

Contribute with a short story to an anthology related to the subject in your book  and you will be mentioned with your book in the resource box.

19.Blogs and Bloggers

-Be in touch with bloggers who review books, for interviews , for guest posts

– Organize a blog tour for yourself or ask a blogger who does that to do it for you

-Ask for a cover reveal

-Ask for a promotional spot for your launching event, your book or a public appearance

20.If all of the above seems too much or too hard for you this problem can be solved very easy: FIND A PUBLICIST 🙂





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