Book Marketing Essentials

Publishing a book can be intense. It takes a lot of writing, editing, testing, rewriting, and designing. While all of this is going on, you also need to consider how you will market the book. Book marketing takes about as much work as putting the book together in the first place. Readers should know you are making a book before the launch. Whether you are self-publishing or going the traditional route, you will have to do some marketing before, during, and after the launch.

Before the Launch

Before you launch your book, it is essential that you do your research, test your product, and establish a presence. You’ll want a good synopsis and cover design to go along with some good reviews. There is a lot that goes into this, so let’s break it down.

Do Your Research

You must know the genre to understand what the audience wants from you as an author. Study the genre and successful authors of that genre. Every category has a bit of a standard, and you would do well to pay attention to those expectations. Success relies on how well you can identify your audience, reach them, and deliver what they want.

Test the Book

Testing can change everything. You might have a broader audience base than you anticipated. You could have a lot of loopholes or poor cover design, and these need to be corrected. It’s important to have all the bugs worked out of your final manuscript before the book launch is fully underway.

Establish a Presence

You want to establish a presence early on. You will want to create your own website. Make it easy to navigate with aesthetically pleasing landing pages for every book you have published to date. You can add your social media profiles. You can tell a little about yourself on the website, and you may even consider writing a blog or publishing videos. Blog posts and videos can help you get higher rankings on search engines. However, provide some value with this content. Do not just use these platforms to promote your book or you will lose people.

Once people reach your platform, you should aim to get their email addresses. A proven way to do this is by having a lead magnet. A lead magnet is a product which complements your content or your book, and it is often hard to resist. Email marketing is a good way to advertise your book, and you can even update your email signature to include a link that takes readers directly to your book’s landing page.

Get Your Book Reviewed

Reviewed books appear much more legitimate and worth the time to read. Send reviewers an Advanced Review Copy (ARC) of your book, either a bound or electronic copy of your final work. You should offer incentives for honest reviews, perhaps a finished copy of your book. You can find people to review it before the release so that there are already reviews to help readers in their decision to buy your book.

Write a Good Synopsis and Create a Good Cover Design

A good synopsis, or book blurb, is a short piece which sums up the book. This snippet needs to be enticing enough to excite potential readers. It should be short and to the point, no more than about 150 words. The cover should excite readers as well. Your book should match its genre and be easy on the eye. Thumbnails are small, but they can be the first (or only) part of the book that readers see. You may consider paying a professional for help with the design.

Spread the Word

While you prepare to launch, you need to let people know that you have a book in the making. You can excite readers by slowly revealing small details about your book like the title or the cover design. You could use book trailers to advertise your book as the release date approaches. You’ll want to decide on a smart price, one that is competitive yet fair, and how you will offer your book to the world (print, eBook, audiobook, etc.). You should consider running a preorder campaign, as they can drive sales before the book is even released.

During and After the Launch

The book launch is when marketing gets intense. You can use social media and guest writing opportunities to spread the word. You can use these outlets, along with your own platforms, to inform people where they can purchase the book and tell them about any contests, giveaways, or discounts.

Social Media Marketing

Any social media platform can help you get the word out. Though not the only form of marketing available, social media has a broad audience base. Maintain a presence on those you are willing to commit to, but do so without drowning readers with information.

Guest Writing Opportunities

Guest posts can help you get exposure on different platforms. When you write guest posts, you can provide value to different audiences while letting them know the title of your book (and maybe even get a backlink to your site).

Contests and Giveaways

Contests are a good way to get people engaged. You could have participation contests where fans, in hopes of winning a prize, help you market your book through likes and shares. You could have fan art contests, trivia contests, or release party contests. An ideal prize may be gifted copies of your book, and you may award some contestants with autographed copies. Contests drive attention and engagement around your book. You can pin this information to the top of your social media pages to increase visibility and drive more people to compete.


Temporary discounts of as little as a dollar or 10 percent off can really drive traffic. However, don’t offer discounts upon the initial release.


Every marketing plan differs, but it is essential that you let the world know you have a book. Feel encouraged to talk to other authors about the publishing and marketing processes, and make notes of any tips they are willing to share. There is a community of writers and readers out there, so get involved and make connections. Make your book available in multiple formats and on multiple platforms, but don’t stretch yourself too thin. You are sure to build a successful book marketing campaign when you cater to your audience.

Book Marketing Essentials

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