This is an excerpt of a letter to my brother, written after he requested marketing advice. A professional fly-fishing guide, he has published a collection of humorous stories of his experiences on the river. Think All Creatures Great and Small for fly-fishing guys. You can find it here. Fly Fishing Tales
I'm not a marketing master by any means, but I've read a lot of books, and I'm constantly experimenting. After I wrote this to Dennis, I thought it might help others as well, so I'm sharing it here.
Here is a marketing plan for your book.
Things you can do now.
1. Make a new cover for you book. Even though the one you have now is much better than the one you had previously, it still doesn’t suggest your humor. Also, all of your books need to have the same look. I have an idea for this and will come up with it over the weekend and show it to you.
2. Weekly, post a story on your blog along with a buy link for your book. Promote this online on all your social media sites and places where fishermen like to virtually hang out. (Do not post fliers onto trees in the woods.)
3. Get a newsletter account at Mailchimp (it’s free.) Tell people that they’ll be the first to know of new releases and stories if they sign up for your newsletter.
4. Aim for your books to be no less than 150 pages so you can get the discriminating advertisers and no more than 200.
When you publish a second book.
1. Send it out to readers in exchange for an honest Amazon review.
2. Make a newsletter and send it to your crowd (you know, the people that have been following your blog and reading the stories you've been posting weekly.)
3. Drop the price of your first book to .99 cents and promote it everywhere that’s free. Here’s a list. http://kristystories.blogspot.com/2013/05/an-amazing-list-of-helpful-sites-for.html
4. When your book has generated enough sales to cover the cost, promote the .99 cent e-book on paid sites. Here’s a list of the advertisers I use: Choosy Book Worm, Kindle, Books and Tips, the Fussy Librarian, Fiverr bknights. I try to have something to promote each month, and I spend about $40.
When you publish a third book.
1. Repeat steps 1-4
2. Drop price of book one to free and promote it everywhere. Consider advertising at the more expensive sites such as Bookbub, Midlist, Booksends, ENT, OHFB
I really wish I had known/done all of this earlier. I have yet to try advertising at the more expensive sites. I've had free runs before but never in conjunction with paid advertising. (Silly, I know.) Next month, I plan on running an advertising blitz and seeing where it takes me. I'm excited, and a little scared. I'll keep you posted on how it goes.