A Self Publishing Journey – Part 3 The End – Getting People to Love You Book

Book marketing is like opening doors for your readers to find you, not a stick you hit them with.”

Heather Hart

So, I hit the publish button and then … What? I was elated, ecstatic, ready to burst out of my skin. But then came the hard part, getting people to find and love my book. And this is where I floundered the most. I’m no marketing guru, and like most other authors, I’m a bit of an introvert and absolutely hate promoting myself.

But then I started to discover marketing is actually all about the reader – about sharing what you love with other like-minded people.

Big sigh. It’s not quite as scary as I first thought.

A great site I’ve discovered is called Just Publishing Advice. They have HEAPS of advice for indie authors in all stages of publishing. They have a great article for authors new to publishing on how to market your book;


Another great website I discovered through the wonderful RWA is:


You just have to sign up for the email newsletter (for free) and they send you lots of helpful information on marketing.

There are 3 main things that stand out as examples of what most authors are doing to get the word out. These are:

  • Establish your online author presence, things like having an up-to-date website, as well as regular blogging.
  • Gearing up your media platform, such as using your blog to announce your publication, as well as using other social media such as Twitter, Facebook, Pintrest and Goodreads to build a potential audience.
  • Use professional and personal networks to help spread the word. This could be friends on Instagram or other bloggers who do book and/or author info sessions.

Some of these things I’ve done, and some I’m still in the process of getting up to speed.

Establishing an Online Presence: I’d already sorted my website out months ago. And started a very basic blog on said website. Big tick for that. But there was only one problem. Supposedly, the absolute best way to boost sales is to grow an email list. Although I’ve started a blog (Oh, that’s right you’re reading this, so you already know that J ) but I didn’t have anyone signed up to my email list. The very first thing I did was install MailChimp on my website, to help me collect, build and maintain this list. But it doesn’t stop there. Then you need to learn how to create the perfect promotional email using MailChimp to send out to your fans. I’m still perfecting that skill.

Freebies: Once you have an email list, then a great idea is to give stuff away. You could write a short story or novella (I’m going to try this one) that might interest your target reader and put it up for free on all the platforms your book’s available on, as well on your website. You can run a raffle, where you offer a signed free copy of your print book to people, who in return for an entry into the raffle then sign onto your email list. (I’m going to try this one as well.)

Gearing up your media platform and announcing your publication: I also created an author Facebook site a few months ago, when I knew for sure I was going down the indie author road, as well as an Instagram account and a Goodreads Author account. So I proudly sent out a few posts on these platforms, which did actually boost sales each time I did it. But I’m not one of those people who can shamelessly promote themselves day after day, sending out posts and tweets thrice daily to keep pushing their product. So my sales haven’t been spectacular. But I will keep at it, trying to make some interesting posts that invite people into my author world, but without the used-car-sales-pitch.

Using other’s networks: The advice for this one is Don’t’ Be Shy. Other authors are generally a really helpful bunch. If you do decide you’re game enough to try and organise a blog tour, you need to give yourself time, as most bloggers organise their content 2 to 3 months in advance. This isn’t something I’ve tried yet. There is a resource, namely the RWA community I could connect with, as there are many bloggers who quite happily share their reviews for like-minded authors in this large group. But again, I’m too chicken to reach out there just yet. I will, though. Soon.

A few other tips: A lot of people run advance marketing promotions well before they even publish their book, to build excitement for when your book is actually launched. Building anticipation is a great way to sell. A lot of the things you can do for advance marketing you’ve either already done, or are in the process of doing right now, ie creating a website, getting a blog on, making contacts with other authors and readers. So it’s just a matter of being well organised before the launch of your book.

This is the end of my three-part blog on my Self Publishing Journey. As you can see, I’m still learning something new every day. But hopefully there may be one or two tips to help you on your own journey, even if it’s just the advice to GO FOR IT. It will be the most exasperating but rewarding experience of your life.

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