You’ve written, edited, shared, and printed your book - congrats! We know it takes a lot of time and effort - you’ve done the difficult part, but your work is not over yet.
Book marketing is a fire that needs constant stoking. Post-printing, your publication requires some aftercare, especially if you intend to earn an income from your print-on-demand books. You can’t just sit back and wait for the money to roll in. Ultimately, readers won’t know your book exists unless you tell them. You need to find ways to maintain your book’s momentum so it’s in the front of people’s minds. To gain visibility, sales and recognition, we’ve come up with a few ideas to help you plot out your next course of action.
Get To Know The Buyer’s Journey
Modern-day consumers are increasingly savvy; the term buyer’s journey refers to a consumer’s decision-making process. The process involves three main stages: Awareness, Consideration and Decision. Let’s look at these three stages more closely:
Awareness: This is where your buyers become aware of an issue. Perhaps your readers lack inspiration or want to learn more about a subject - that’s where your book comes in.
Consideration: This part of the process denotes how a buyer defines the issue and how they aim to solve it. Your buyers may begin online research to understand their options better.
Decision: Finally, the buyer decides how best to resolve their issue. Perhaps your publication makes it onto a shortlist, and the buyer can compare it with alternatives before making a final purchase decision (i.e. I’m going to buy X fiction book, and I’ll purchase it on X website/platform at XX.XX).
Once you’ve identified your buyer (e.g. fiction book readers, fantasy novel enthusiasts, etc.), you can tailor your plans towards a specific audience.
Plan Your Online Marketing Strategy
Before, during and after launching your publication, you should plan and execute a marketing strategy. Email marketing, social media promotion, collaborations, podcasts, guest blog posts, reviews and giveaways can all play a part in getting your book more exposure. You could even sign up for emails from platforms like HARO (Help A Reporter Out), a platform designed to connect sources with journalists from highly respected print and online publications so they can share stories with you as a reliable example.
PrintLink’s free virtual preview is also an effective marketing tool. You can share and embed the preview on your website, social media channels or wherever else online and control how many pages your audience can view. You’re not limited to where you can sell your work - you’re totally in control of how and where you make your money. Besides, campaigns need to have visual appeal, and the preview is a helpful way to drum up interest and give potential buyers an insight into what to expect from a physical printed copy. It’s also another great way to demonstrate your reliability and professionalism as an author.
If you’re new to online marketing, nailing the right keywords is also crucial in getting your publication title to appear high in search results from personal websites or e-commerce platforms. Search engines show users the most relevant findings based on what they input into the search bar, known in the digital marketing world as SEO (Search Engine Optimization).
The more relevant your publication is to a user’s search, the more likely it will appear higher up in search results and be clicked. Identify your book’s genre and input it into SEO search engines like Google Trends, SEM Rush Keyword tool and Keyword Tool to integrate key search terms in your product title and publication description. Let’s give you an example:
Let’s say you’re printing a fiction book on demand. You want to rank in that category and need a brief description. On Google Trends, the top-ranking terms in the United States include:
best fiction books
Here is an example description that uses a few top search terms from above:
One of the best fiction books you’ll read this year! A few days before they start high school, the students of an elite academy are dressed in all black and sent to a pitch-black forest. There they learn that there is a mystery that needs to be solved. Failure means expulsion. The ball is in their court, and they must find the flags hidden throughout the forest by sunrise or else...The new fiction book ‘Me, School and The Underworld’ by Sarah Darer Littman is an unmissable read, now available for purchase.
Your goal is to subtly integrate popular SEO terms into your text whilst maintaining a natural, human-like tone of voice. You don’t need to highlight the terms, and they’re subject to change depending on what people search for online. The best practice is to integrate 2-3 keywords so you’re not penalized for keyword stuffing - a technique used to gain an unfair rank advantage in search results - meaning you can appear lower or even removed from search results.
Keep Up To Date With Payments
Mixam will pay you monthly via the secure, third-party payment platform Stripe Connect. Don’t forget you can monitor your book sales by accessing an overview of processing payments, total earnings and transactions via our platform. You can also view individual sales transactions when you log into your account. You may choose to get an income from one platform, or you can feature your publication on more than one - how and where you earn is up to you! Your payments dashboard can help you identify which parts of your marketing strategy are beneficial. To enable sales, select Fixed Markup or Percentage Markup in the Pricing Strategy section when setting up PrintLink.
Get Out Into The Real World
Book signings, book readings, workshops, fairs, events, mentorship - gone are the days of authors strictly fulfilling their job role as a writer with no reader interaction. Often overlooked but worthwhile, heading out into physical spaces where you and your work can be seen may have a surprising effect on sales. It can mutually benefit author and reader, even if you occasionally go out. Plus, your online marketing can complement and work in addition to your real-world marketing and advertising. And, if you wanted, you could take on their feedback to influence future publications.
Think About Your Next Publication
Speaking of subsequent publications, give your published book a chance to breathe before deciding to print. Is your book a stand-alone piece, or could it work as part of a series? Could you diversify your subject and create more than one publication? The decision is yours, but the creative freedom is unparalleled with Mixam’s print-on-demand service.
There’s no size fits all when it comes to book marketing, but what’s certain is there are plenty of ways to get your book noticed. PrintLink is an advanced feature that will continue to grow and improve with your help. To launch your PrintLink, log in to your account and see if your previous orders are eligible. Alternatively, you can get your quote for your publications here. And if you can’t find the answer you’re looking for, please don’t hesitate to contact our team of print experts.
Image Credits: Unsplash and Stripe