Lesson 5: Capitalizing on Self-Publishing!

Posted: July 8, 2014 in How to Capitalize on Self-Publishing
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Marketing, Publicity, Promotion

20140418-105055.jpgMarketing, publicity, and promotion, is as vital to your books success as editing, and just like editing, there is a three step process and all steps are important to the whole completion of the novel. I haven’t covered editing in my lessons yet, and I will, but mostly because most writers learn early these stages: copy editing (grammatical), content editing (consistency), and book doctoring (beginning, middle, ending).

▪ Marketing is just that, putting your book on the market. Today the social media is the best most inexpensive way to market your book via word of mouth, and the social media alone has created some of today’s most successful artist and writers. When I first published “The Son of the Streets” in 2008, when there was no Face Book or Twitter presence. There was MySpace, Authors Den, and Goodreads. Thats it! Now you have tons of great social media sites like Linkedin (terrence baker), FaceBook (Indiana Slim), Tumblr (Terrence Baker), and Twitter (baker_terrence) that really are designed for discovery in pretty much any aspect of artistry. Marketing is the most important to the books success in my opinion because if your book isn’t marketed properly no one will hear about it, which will result in little to no sales, and just simply setting up distribution channels are a waist of time if those channels dont allow you access to the market. I recommend and use Book Master ($1000) and Baker & Taylor ($300), they both have international databases that will allow your book to be placed in any Barnes & Noble and most of the other Large and small chain book stores. The goal is to get with Ingram, thats the hardest to get to take your book on, and you almost always have to go through a third party, but once with them your books will appear regionally on the market and sometimes nationally. To sum up marketing I would say that its up to the writer to get the book properly marketed based on budget. When you can afford a ($1000-25000) marketing campaign get one. It is investing in the end, but when you can’t afford it, word of mouth via social media can make just as much of a impact.

▪ Publicity is the second to marketing, because once your book is on the market, or if your lucky, on the book shelf in stores, it will collect dust and end up returned to you at your expense if your not letting people know about and where to find your book. This is where a publicist comes into the equation, and when having a literary agent or manager comes into place. It would be there responsibility to hire the right people, but when self-published its on you. In order to get out there and on the radio, literary journals, commercials, interviews, and signings, someone has to organize it all. You can hire a book publicist ($250/hr-$3000/month) or an publics relations firm ($6000-10,000/quarter). This all depends on where you live, because when your in Indiana and trying to make a New York living off your work you will need a firm of some sort thats less personal with a further reach, but when your living in or close to the New York outlets a book publicist with a more personal touch would be more ideal for you, they usually will have access to the literary world, but reach regionally more so then nationally.

▪ Promotion is the next step after publicity. This is when you the writer have to get out there and get your hands dirty and tell people about your work. This is the hardest stage, because this is the first time you will have to deal with rejection. I took an unconventional approach to promotion and got my peddlers license (Merchant Certificate) for the State of New York and set tables up on corners selling and giving my book away at little to no cost at all. This is hard if self-published because of the lack of inventory on hand, but a thought if your willing to invest it some stock. I would print with Malloy or BookMasters, they will be best turn around time (1-2weeks), cost ($1.00-2.00/per copy, great costumer service, and very nice  high quality products). Promotion can be an opportunity anywhere. This is solely up to you the writer, so make sure you have a place or link or blog or somewhere to guide them to your work. Its up to you to make sales.

 

Terrence LeRoy Baker 7-8-2014

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