How to Promote Self-Published Writing

self-publishedSo you’ve self-published a book—congratulations! DiggyPOD knows a lot of time, effort, blood, sweat, and tears went into the writing and editing of your book. We’re proud to provide you with a top-notch, quality product. Your hard work isn’t over, though: now it’s time to sell that book. Your sales will depend entirely on how well you market and promote your book.

Now, self-publishing can be easier, and quicker, than traditional publishing. The process isn’t bogged-down by querying agents and auctioning to publishing houses. With the option of Print on Demand, publishing is really quite simple and efficient. However, one setback to self-publishing is that you don’t have the full force of the publishing house behind your back. Of course, DiggyPOD offers a platform to sell your self-published book, yet you must market that book before it can sell.

So, how can you promote self-published work?

Thankfully, the Internet is a great (and cheap!) resource. If you don’t want to spend additional funds on marketing, use traditional social media to market your book. Know your audience, find out where they spend their time online (do they use Twitter more than Facebook? Are they on Tumblr?), and target them. Knowing your audience stems from knowing your genre.

To market your self-published book on social media, make sure your profile is strong, professional, yet relatable. Provide links to buy your book. Create an author page on Facebook and invite your friends and family to “like” the page. If you don’t want to pay to promote your tweets, you can use hashtags to make sure they land on the right timelines. For more on how to effectively use Twitter, read this blog post.

Social media ads

Another way to use social media to your advantage is to pay for it, with Facebook ads, boosted posts, and sponsored tweets on Twitter. Facebook makes it easy to market your book: you can choose what audience you’d like to advertise to, based on demographics, behaviors, or contact information, post your ad to their home page, and easily see the analytics of how well your advertisement is doing over time. You set your maximum daily ad budget, and Facebook does the rest. There are different ways to pay for your ads:

Cost per click (CPC): you only pay for each user that actually clicks on your ad

Impressions (CPM): this is much lower than cost per click – you’re paying a cost per 1,000 impressions

Cost per like: this is if you’re advertising your author page, you pay so much per like on that page.

If you don’t want to place ads, you can “Boost” posts, which simply places your post higher on your followers’/friends’ timelines and recirculates it. The cost to boost a post depends on how many users you wish to see the post. Again, you choose your budget, and Facebook does the rest.

Promoted tweets on Twitter work a lot like Facebook ads and boosted posts. Advertisers (or, in this case, self-published authors) pay for their tweet to appear on a target audience’s timeline. Promoted tweets can cost between $.50-$4.00 per engagement (per click, “Like”, or “Retweet”).

Beyond social media

You can also promote your self-published book beyond marketing on social media. One great way to promote not only your book, but yourself as a writer in general, is to form a newsletter. Whoever wants to keep up with your writing can choose to receive the newsletter. Newsletters provide a very personal communication platform with your readers. You can encourage people to sign up for your letter by providing exclusive content, such as excerpts from your book or blog posts about your writing process.

If you prefer to promote your book offline, you can work with your local bookstore to schedule author events. Indie bookstores are an excellent place to go, because they hold a lot of readings, and since they’re a small business, they enjoy working with smaller authors. Bring copies of your book along with you to sell to audience members afterward. Once you build a good relationship with your local bookstore, you could even sell your book in the store.

The possibilities are really endless: they just depend on what actions you will take. Ultimately, the more reviews your book gets and the more eyes that see it, the better it will sell. You just have to get the ball rolling. Self-publishing requires that you remain active and persistent throughout the whole process.