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1001 Ways to Market Your Books
1001 Ways to Market Your Books, 6th Edition
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John gives an overview of the book:

1001 Ways to Market Your Books describes more than 1000 ideas, tips, and suggestions for marketing books – all illustrated with real-life examples showing how other authors and publishers have marketed their books. Learn how to: Edit and design your books for promotional clout Open new markets Get national publicity for your books Advertise your books effectively Sell your books direct to your customers Get nationwide distribution for your books Work with bookstores to sell more books Sell books to specialty retail stores Sell books to schools and libraries Sell subsidiary and foreign rights Sell books via the Internet Sell to premium and catalog buyers Spin off products from your books 1001 Ways to Market Your Books also includes 200 specific marketing tips just for authors as well as a separate chapter on how authors can capitalize on the increased recognition a...
Read full overview »

1001 Ways to Market Your Books describes more than 1000 ideas, tips, and suggestions for marketing books – all illustrated with real-life examples showing how other authors and publishers have marketed their books. Learn how to:

  • Edit and design your books for promotional clout
  • Open new markets
  • Get national publicity for your books
  • Advertise your books effectively
  • Sell your books direct to your customers
  • Get nationwide distribution for your books
  • Work with bookstores to sell more books
  • Sell books to specialty retail stores
  • Sell books to schools and libraries
  • Sell subsidiary and foreign rights
  • Sell books via the Internet
  • Sell to premium and catalog buyers
  • Spin off products from your books

1001 Ways to Market Your Books also includes 200 specific marketing tips just for authors as well as a separate chapter on how authors can capitalize on the increased recognition a book gives their work.

Read an excerpt »

The first step in marketing any product is to produce something worthwhile, something people want or need, something people will buy. As products, books involve a combination of content, author, title, design, packaging, and price. All these elements must work together to create a bestselling book.

6:01 Strive for Excellence

Regardless of what kind of books you publish, the books must have some sort of content. Yes, it is possible to sell books with no content at all (witness the Anything Books and diaries), but that is a limited market. Most publishers must give priority to content. And rightly so. Indeed, the reason most of us are in publishing is because of the content. We want to create books with lasting value, with significance, with substance.

Excellence of content does not come out of thin air. You must seek it out. And the first step in finding what you want is to define as clearly as possible what it is that you are seeking. Set a firm objective, make it clear to your editorial staff, and then let them go to work.

Here are a few guidelines your editors should have:

  • Seek the best available—the best authors, the best subjects, the best content, the best marketing possibilities.
  • Make sure the book fits into the company's current and projected lines of books. Don’t spread yourself thin by trying to publish in too many subject areas. Ask yourself: Will the book add to our credibility?
  • Always be aware of the marketing implications. Your editors should participate in your major marketing meetings and decisions.
  • When reviewing a proposal, consider not only its potential for direct sales but also for subsidiary rights, international sales, and special sales.
  • Also ask: Will it fit into our backlist? Will it be a good backlist seller?
  • Then ask: Will the copyright be valuable? This questions becomes most important to those larger publishers affiliated with TV networks, movie studios, audio tape producers, or other content hungry subsidiaries.
  • Think big—not that all books have to be bestsellers, but rather that all books should have grand possibilities, either for sales or for the enlightenment of the world, or for both.
  • Publish solid information. Publish books that are useful, inspiring, entertaining, or informative.
  • Stratify your list. Be clear about which of your books are A list (that is, worthy of extra promotions and national exposure), C list (those aimed at a limited market, thus requiring a shorter print run and less promotion), and B list (titles in the middle of the other two categories).
  • Consider who your target audience is. Who would buy this book? Who is your core market? How large is the audience?
  • Is the timing right? Is the content fresh, new, unique, interesting?
  • What is the competition? How is this book better? What do the publishers of competitive titles do to promote their titles?

6:02 When Should You Publish a Book?

Before you decide to publish a book, here are a few key points you should consider. These points apply to large publishers as well as small publishers. In fact, they also apply to writers. You might want to create a checklist of the following points so you cover them with every title you publish.

The Chill Factor

Don’t publish a book unless you have a passion for it. If you are going to do justice to the book, you need to believe in it. First, you will be living with it for at least one year, maybe five or more years. Second, if you are not passionate about your book, your lack of passion will be communicated to book buyers, media people, and consumers. It will always show through no matter how much you pump yourself up. You cannot fake passion. You have to live it, right down to your toes.

I call this requirement for passion The Chill Factor. When I think of writing or publishing a book, I know it’s a good idea if I feel chills running up and down my spine. If I don’t feel that kind of excitement about a book, I will not publish it. In fact, I won’t send out a news release unless I feel the same Chill Factor about the news release.

Make It the Best

Don’t publish a book unless it is the best on the market. The first question bookstores, wholesalers, sales reps, and consumers will ask you is: How is your book different from other books on the market? You need to answer that question. If you can answer that yours is the best, so much the better!

It’s up to you to define how yours is the best. Maybe it’s the biggest. The least expensive. The most comprehensive. The most revolutionary. Why is it the best?

If your book is not the best, don’t publish it until you can change it enough to make it the best. Never try to squeak through with almost the best. That’s a poor attitude for building a company. You can only afford to be less than the best if you don’t care about your customers or you don’t plan on being around for very long. Remember: The reputation of your company is on the line with every book you publish. Make sure it’s the best!

Get Endorsements for the Book

Don’t publish a book unless you can get at least two endorsements for the book before you sign the contract with the author. Or, at the very least, before you go to press with the first edition.

Identify Five Target Audiences

Don’t publish a book unless you can identify five target audiences for the book. That means that you should know at least five different groups that would want your book—plus you should know how to reach them. What magazines do they read? What organizations do they belong to? What catalogs serve these audiences? What book clubs?

For example, with my Celebrate Today book, I identified these target audiences: trivia lovers, birthday gift buyers, publicists, book publishers, writers, media (especially radio), speakers, meeting organizers, teachers, sales managers, and retailers.

Identify Three Ways to Reach Each Audience

Don’t publish a book unless you can identify at three ways to reach each of the five or more targeted audiences for you book. You should work out a specific plan for publicity, advertising, and distribution to each audience.

Backlist Sales Potential

Don’t publish a book unless it has backlist sales potential. Look for books that will sell for years to come. Don’t try to catch the latest fad. If you want to build a business, you need to build from a solid base—and, for publishing, that means you have to publish books with lasting quality.

Ten Minutes a Day

Don’t publish a book unless you are willing to spend at least ten minutes per day for the next three years marketing that book. Never break this rule. If you are not willing to spend ten minutes per day marketing a book, then you have no right publishing it. Let someone else do it—someone who believes in the book enough to spend a few minutes each day marketing it.

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Note from the author coming soon...

About John

John Kremer is the owner of Open Horizons as well as editor-at-large of the Book Marketing Update newsletter. He is the author of 1001 Ways to Market Your Books, The Complete Direct Marketing Sourcebook, High-Impact Marketing on a Low-Impact Budget, Do-It-...

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