Top 10 Book Promotion Ideas & Publishing Challenges
After putting in all the hard work and writing the whole book, we think most of our work is done; now, the publisher will do the rest.
In this article, we look at the various challenges faced by an author, during the process of publication and also post- publishing.
Firstly, for most of the first time authors finding a contract with a traditional publishing house is out of the question due to the stiff competition out there. Most of the Traditional publishers look for established writers with strong personal branding. Leaving this topic for another time, let’s move on.
The other two options are Digital Publishing and Self-Publishing.
Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP) is amongst the most popular options for digital publishing. This is free of cost and quick. However, consumes a bit of time and demands a learning curve while creating a cover page, uploading the book and form filling. If you have the patience to watch guided videos on YouTube, this is a cakewalk. The major problem with KDP is that you have to apply for ISBN number (amazon accepts book without ISBN) and copyrights separately for claiming ownership for your content. KDP does not offer paperback in India.
Lastly, we have the self-publishing option. Many self-publishing companies are offering end-to-end solutions like editing, cover & internal page design, printing, ISBN & copyrights, listing on e-commerce platforms and marketing & promotions including Author dashboard to keep the track on your book sales. A one-stop solution for all your publishing needs.
Self-publishing companies are offering their services right from 5000Rs to 1,50,000Rs. These publishers nowadays offer a lead time of 30 days or lesser to get published once the manuscript is ready. This option is quick and sometimes cheap as well.
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Please keep caution, as many individuals are claiming to be Publishers without any legal compliance. The criterion for you while choosing a publisher, apart from your budget are these:
- Should be a company and not an individual
- Check the number of books and other published authors till date
- Check out the Publisher review on platforms like Quora
Now, the problem with KDP and Self-publishing option is sales. A self-publishing company will not promise assured sales to the Author. The company only charges you for the above-mentioned services offered by them and the marketing packages come at an additional cost to the Author. Since a traditional publisher already has a wider distribution channel in place, sales could definitely be better.
Once your book is published, the most common misconception amongst first time authors is the term “Bestseller”. Since most of the Authors are on cloud nine after the publication of their first book. They are overwhelmed with all the positivity and appreciation around them.
When you search for your book on Amazon and see it pop under bestsellers’ list you go berserk. Here, the excitement is right, but the data is skewed. Amazon book bestseller is based on the sales in that particular week or a few days. Since many of your first and second circles of friends would have bought the book, the number of hits on your book must have increased in that particular week.
Most experts from the publishing industry suggest that to be a bestseller in India, you should sell at least 10,000 copies a year. Keeping in mind that many authors hardly reach 100 copies being sold a year. So do not get excited unless you actually reach these numbers.
Don’t worry, be patient and follow a few suggestions that we are going to discuss in this article. These suggestions are based on our research and discussions with key people in the publishing industry under the Sharing Stories campaign of #findingsolutions
Sharing Stories Book Promotion Ideas and Marketing Solutions
More the merrier: Apart from Selling platforms like Amazon, Flipkart and Physical book stores, make sure you reach maximum visibility across the digital space. Try and list your book across various credible book listing platforms. And good listing platforms do charge for listing as it takes their time and effort as well. This could be in the form of book listing, Author Interviews, Book reviews and book summary. Facebook, Instagram, Goodreads, blogging websites and Quora are popular platforms for this. Make sure you choose the right review platform with a strong digital presence which ensures visibility for your book and helps you in the sale. There are some excellent individual reviewers with good credibility and great engagements on their posts.
“Your book has to be seen, to be bought.”
Things to note during the book promotion.
- Instead of the number of ‘Followers’, check out the number of books and profile of authors reviewed and engagements on each post including likes, comments and shares. This gives an indication of active visitors towards that social handle.
- Choose a credible website with authentic domain for your interview and Listings.
- Get as many good reviews on Amazon through giveaway programs (a verified purchase in Amazon has more value) before spending on your paid advertisement campaigns.
- Be active on Quora answering questions and other guest blogs in your niche.
- Get an aesthetically done book trailer for your book. This grabs attention amongst viewers.
- Participate in various Writing & Book Contests.
- Participate in social gatherings related to literature and art, both physical and digital.
- Reach out to nearby Book stalls and Libraries and make the books available there.
- Keep a track on each of these promotional activities and the sales that it brings to you. Focus on the most fruitful one.
- Accumulate and grow your contact list of readers and people within your niche and send out occasional promotional emails
And do let us know how it worked for you on our Facebook community for content creators.
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