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Getting Your Book to the Top of the Pile

Everyone who has ever written a short story or novel thinks highly of their work, but how distinctive and unique is it compared to the millions of other books being published year in and year out?

If you don’t know the answer, then how can you convince anyone to pick it up at the bookstore, let alone buy it?

To give you a push in the right direction, here are a few things for you to think about:

  • What makes your book stand out from others in your genre?
  • Does your story cover a well-documented theme, but with a new energetic slant?
  • Are you marketing your book to its greatest potential?

Make your book exist, not just for yourself, but for your readers. Using simple book marketing techniques can help get you convey your message.

Create a Multimedia Showcase

Many books sold today cover a vast range of subjects, everything from music, air flight, cars, cooking, to fashion—you name it, and there is a book about it.

If your book covers a subject such as a brand of car, why not put a multimedia slide or video show together for interested groups in your area? Many local places are happy to help a local author. Having copies of your books available for sale during the event will certainly help your marketing plans.

Invest in “Spin-Off” Products

A great way to have your book seen each day by your readers and potential readers is by investing in “spin-off” items. The same technique used by all advertising agencies for their products.

  • Having your book cover illustration or a quote from your story printed on coffee mugs, bookmarks or phone cases
  • Having a plastic or thermal non-spill mug engraved with a quotation or an illustration of one of your characters
  • Create a series of postcards showing your book cover, characters and even a photo of yourself

Use these as giveaways at events you have organized yourself or are attending with other self-published authors.

Donating Your Time to Others in Need

If you have written and illustrated a book on dogs or cats, why not spend time at your local animal shelter? In many cases, these societies are self-financed and need help with their own written material. So giving a few hours a week and donating some of your copies to sell to people coming in helps your sales and aids a good cause.

Write a Column in Your Local Newspaper

Again if your book is genre-related, why not approach your local newspaper to write a column? This will establish you in the eyes of the readers as an expert in your field and will give you a wide audience of readers who are also interested in your subject. Of course, during your weekly or monthly column, never forget to mention your book and events you will be attending and organizing to promote your work.

Be Proactive—Sell, Sell and Sell Some More!

You may not think you’re a salesperson, but you will learn to be one. To market your book at an event, you have to get out there and be the best at what you do. Here are a few simple ideas:

  • Look like you want to be there. There is nothing worse than seeing someone sitting with a grumpy face. So smile and smile again.
  • Getting things for free is great. Give out some of your “spin-off” items, such as bookmarks and mugs.
  • Chat with people. Don’t just stand there waiting for people to come to you. Entice them with a quick chat as they stroll by.
  • Location, location, location. Make sure your book or books are in clear view. Don’t hide them in a box in the corner.

If someone seems interested, ask them if they would like you to dedicate the book to someone and autograph it for them.

These are just some of the small areas authors may neglect when looking at a bigger picture when marketing their books. Activate that hidden salesperson inside you.