“7 Must-Know Book Marketing Resources for Indie Authors”
by Jenn Gott
Let’s say you’ve taken all the right steps: you’ve written your book, edited it to perfection, and learned all about the self-publishing and traditional publishing processes. Now you’re getting ready to take the plunge. First off, congratulations! But don’t think this means you can rest on your laurels. After all, no one can appreciate your mastery of literary devices, your high-stakes plot, or your excellent use of metaphor if they don’t know your book exists.
That’s right: today, we’re talking about book marketing resources!
I can hear you groaning from here, but don’t worry—marketing doesn’t need to be scary. In fact, with the right tools, you too can start climbing the sales ranks.
Without further ado, here’s “7 Must-Know Book Marketing Resources for Indie Authors.”
If you’re ever running promotions on your book, you’re going to want to submit to BookBub. A listing in BookBub’s Featured Deals is considered the Holy Grail of sales promotion, and it’s easy to see why—BookBub consistently earns you a high return on investment, and being featured has even boosted more than one author up bestseller lists.
Competition for the spots is fierce, so it’s not always possible to get a Featured Deal every time you submit. But since you don’t pay unless you’re accepted, it never hurts to try!
#2. Publisher Rocket
If you’re publishing on Amazon, I couldn’t recommend Publisher Rocket enough. It’s the go-to resource for Amazon publishing. Want to find out how competitive your categories and keywords are? It can do that for you. Curious about the sales data for your closest rivals? Publisher Rocket can pull up the numbers for you. It will even build a list of suggested keywords for AMS ads, cutting out the guesswork and expensive trial-and-error.
You can use it every step of the way: from identifying hot genres to write in, to crafting descriptions that target your specific audience, to guiding you through your ad campaign. Publisher Rocket will save you time, money, and frustration, allowing you to focus on what really matters—writing more books.
Mailing lists are often the cornerstone of many successful authors’ marketing campaigns. Where else can you connect one-on-one with your most loyal readers? Including a sign-up link in the back of your books is only the first step. After that, you’ve still got to build engaging and useful updates to send out to your fans.
Thankfully, Mailchimp is an email marketing service that has easy tools for creating beautiful newsletters. It also offers in-depth tracking systems to let you see which campaigns are working—and which still need more work. All you need to do is write the news you want your readers to see, and Mailchimp will make sure you never lose touch again.
Enter Amazon Marketing Services, or AMS. AMS is behind the “Sponsored Products” that you see when you browse Amazon search results or product pages, and they’re available for self-published authors. By running regular AMS campaigns, you can keep your sales up even when you’re between promotions and new releases.
And with the option of creating multiple versions of your ad at once, you’ll be able to “A/B test” to determine exactly which ads earn you the most profit. It can take some time to learn the tricks of running a successful campaign, but luckily there are lots of courses and marketing resources out there that will help you understand how to use AMS ads to their best advantage.
What do people love more than a deal on a single book? A deal on multiple books! BundleRabbit makes it easy to connect with other authors who’ve written books similar to yours, allowing you to bundle them together in a virtual boxset. By combining forces, authors can take advantage of a wider pool of readers, while simultaneously dividing the cost and effort of marketing.
BundleRabbit takes care of all the logistics for you, so you don’t need to worry about pesky things like how to divide royalty payments across a team of hungry authors. You can list your books in their catalogue to see if anyone is putting together a bundle you might fit in with, or if you’re feeling proactive, you can become a curator and organize one around your brand!
Looking for an alternate option to spread the word about your book? Audiobooks are increasing in popularity and are only getting easier to produce for indie authors. Check out this article to learn more about getting started.
Does all this still sound overwhelming? Don’t worry, we’ve got you covered there, too. Reedsy Marketplace is a fantastic way to connect with professional marketers and publicists (or even developmental editors, if you want to make sure that your book’s foundations are strong) who will do a great job and take the marketing work off your hands.
Simply browse the list of freelance professionals, and request free quotes for their services. The best part? Reedsy researches and vets all their freelancers, so you can rest easy knowing that you’re only getting quality industry insiders.
Getting book reviews is perhaps the number-one way to attract new readers. And while you should absolutely pursue reviews on Amazon and Goodreads, you should also be chasing reviews on blogs and trade publications. Independent Book Review publishes book reviews for small press and self-published authors only, meaning that anyone who is published outside of the major publishers is invited to submit. For free!
Or, if you need pull-quotes for your book cover and Amazon editorial reviews section, IBR also offers editorial book reviews. It’s a way to climb up their review queue, grab catchy quotes, and make sure your book is being read and considered for review publication by someone on the team.
About the Author
Jenn Gott is an indie author and a writer with Reedsy, so she basically spends all her time either writing books, or helping people learn how to write books. She firmly believes there is no writing skill you cannot learn with practice and the right guidance. When she’s not working, she enjoys keeping up with the latest superhero movies, reading, and swimming.
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