This week on Writing Wednesday, we are pleased to welcome Caroline from Culture Coverage as a guest blogger. Check out her tips for promoting your work (for free) below!
You have overcome numerous setbacks and dedicated countless hours to perfecting your book. Now that you’ve finally finished writing it, you need to promote it. Promoting a book can be an expensive exercise. That being said, there are some clever ways to promote your work for free. Certain publishers even suggest that these methods are more effective than traditional marketing.
While these methods may be free in financial terms, they are likely to take quite a bit of time and effort on your part. If you are dedicated to promoting your work, though, the time and effort will be worth it. So before you spend any money, try these tactics. You might even find you don’t need to hire a publicist at all.
1. Use Word of Mouth
At heart, human beings are social creatures who love to share and spread information. Using word of mouth is one of the easiest ways to promote your work. Reach out to all your friends and family and encourage them to tell everyone they know about your book. You are likely to be amazed at how quickly the news about your work will spread.
While the average person only knows between 10 and 25 people well enough to trust them, most people are acquainted with a surprising number of people. The average American knows roughly 600 people, and you don’t need to trust someone to tell him or her about a friend or family member’s book. So word of mouth really can do an enormous amount to promote your work.
2. Go Viral
As we mentioned before, people are excellent at spreading information. In addition to word of mouth methods, you can use this human characteristic to promote your work in another way: social media. Almost everyone uses at least one social networking website, be it Facebook, Twitter or Google+. Using these websites might just send your book viral, and that would be first prize in terms of free promotion.
Start by creating your own page on as many social networking sites as possible. Once you’ve created your own pages, get involved with others. Try to find as many groups and pages as you can that focus on the topic or genre of your book. Then start commenting on them. Your comments shouldn’t be simple advertising. Write meaningful comments and take part in conversations. If you get to know people, they will want to get to know you, so don’t forget to include your book’s title and a link in all your profiles and bios.
3. Embrace Freebies
There are many websites where you can promote your work free of charge. Take advantage of them. Create profiles on as many of these websites as possible, and provide lots of engaging information about your work.
Websites such as Goodreads, Amazon Author Central and Books on the Knob all provide free promotional services. There are many other websites where you can promote your work free of charge. Do a web search to see which other useful websites you can find. If you do use a free website or social networking website to promote your book, it is important you safeguard your personal information. Make use of decent anti-virus software and a good virtual private network, such as Buffered VPN.
4. Use Mainstream Media
Mainstream media, such as newspapers and radio stations, may not come to mind when you imagine free promotion. However, there is a way to use mainstream media to promote your work for free. Do some research about magazines, newspapers and radio stations to find out which ones might be interested in the topic or genre of your book. Then spend some time crafting a focused, well-written press release, and send it to any of the media outlets you think might be interested in it.
5. Start Blogging
Every author needs an author platform. Author platform is a somewhat difficult concept to explain because people all define it differently. The simplest explanation is that your author platform helps you to sell your books because of who you are and who you can connect with. Essentially, it is a way for you to reach out to your readers.
Blogging is the cheapest way to create your author platform because there are websites that host blogs for free. Start writing a regular blog about your work. Make sure your blog has a comments section because this will open up a channel of communication between you and your audience. Remember to add links to your blog in all your online profiles and press releases. This will increase the number of people who read it and provide more free promotion for your work.
Promoting and advertising your work can be very expensive, but there are numerous ways to do it for free. Do you have any ideas about how to promote your work for free? Please let us know about them in the comments.
About the author: Caroline is an entertainment blogger who has a passion for creative writing. She hopes this post will help you spread the word about your own work. You can check out more of her work at culturecoverage.com.
About Paperblanks: At Paperblanks, we believe that art should have a place in all aspects of life. That’s why we follow the artist’s way in everything we do – creating, crafting and releasing designs we believe have the power to touch people. For more about Paperblanks, go to our website at paperblanks.com.