Launching a book, getting on bestseller lists, and selling lots of books requires a plan and the commitment to put that plan into action.
First, create a launch plan which includes timelines, a list of activities and actions, and a budget to support the activities. There are a number of activities any live or virtual book launch should account for to ensure maximum success, including:
- Creating a website or landing page for your book
- Updating your Author Central (Amazon) page
- Writing, editing, and preparing a promotional and follow-up email campaign
- Writing and scheduling social media marketing
- Booking traditional media and podcast interviews
- Guest blogging
- Inviting and sharing book reviews
- Sending outreach to libraries and bookstores (and other retailers where your book has a fit such as gift stores, business centres, hospital gift stores, etc.)
- Setting up book signings, presentations, and promotional events
Below are a few other strategies that will help you launch with success and create a book that sells after the launch and launch marketing ends.
Remember, when you stop marketing your book, it is likely your book stops selling. Daily and weekly ongoing marketing is necessary to make your book an evergreen book that keeps on selling and making a difference in the world.
#1 Create a book one-sheet and book media sheet
An effective one-sheet should include:
- Your photo
- The book cover image
- A short description about the book
- Your short bio
- Some testimonials about the book
- Contact details
- Purchase information
- And, to make good use of a one-sheet, why not create a media sheet on the back? You could include:
- Ten questions that media could ask you
- Links to some of your other media
- Logos of media you have been on
- Contact information for media to book you for an interview
Really want to impress media and securing the booking?
- Add a bold block that highlights how you will market the media (e.g. x# of Tweets and Facebook posts).
- Write a blog or LinkedIn article with tips/content from the interview with two links back to the media/article/show site and, of course, put the media links on your website (they love links back to them).
These strategies will help your one-sheet stand out!
#2 Sign up for the Public Lending Right program
If the country you live in has one, sign up for the Public Lending Right (PLR) program (for example, Canada: https://publiclendingright.ca/). Yearly, the PLR program provides authors and writers with payments (to creators whose works are in public libraries in Canada).
According to the PLR Commission website, the Public Lending Right “is the right of authors to receive payment for free public use of their works in libraries. More than 30 countries around the world have PLR programs. In some countries, payments to eligible authors are based on library lending. In other countries, payments are based on the total number of copies of each book held in libraries. In Canada, payments are based on the presence of a title in public library catalogues that are consulted during the annual PLR survey.”
#3 Share and Create a Book Sampler
Books samplers can be a great share to entice interest in your book. Generally, samplers tend to have:
- Your front and back cover
- Inside flap information
- A few chapters
- Any book club questions (if you have created them)
#4 Generate Book Club Questions
Create book club or discussion guide questions that support the book.
- If your book is for students, these could be classroom discussion guide/questions.
- If your book is appropriate for book clubs, make these book club questions.
- If your book is aimed at business, these could be workplace or team discussion questions.
These four additional strategies can be worked into your launch plan to help you boost your success.
Benjamin Franklin said, “By failing to prepare, you are preparing to fail.”
To launch without a plan is never a good idea. A well-planned launch allows your book to get into the hands of readers around the world!
Charmaine Hammond, CSP, MA, BA is a 4-time bestselling and award winning author and professional speaker who works with authors to build collaborations and partnerships to help raise their dreams through sponsorship.