Book Marketing Services That Every Self-Published Author Should Consider

29th May, 2024

5 min read

Book Marketing Services That Every Self-Published Author Should Consider

Book Marketing Services That Every Self-Published Author Should Consider

Written by:

Jane Rowland

With the freedom of self-publishing comes the challenge of marketing your book effectively. To stand out, self-published authors must make use of various book marketing techniques. In this article, we'll explore the essential book marketing services that every self-published author should consider to ensure their book reaches its full potential.

1. Book Marketing Services: Professional Book Cover Design

You might not consider your book jacket to be one of your biggest book marketing tools, but think again. First impressions matter, and your book cover is your biggest advert to readers. Your book jacket should be finished early – so you can use it in all stages of your marketing – and created with real attention to the genre, the type of book you are producing and your readership. Unless you have design skills, leave the book cover to the professionals. In addition to getting an enticing book cover that attracts readers, your cover gives you other promotional opportunities, such as cover reveals on websites and social media, and the chance to make it the centrepiece of all your marketing materials, such as bookmarks, posters and paid-for advertising. 

2. Book Marketing Services: Author Websites 

Marketing for book authors is not just about getting reviews and features in the media; the majority of marketing now consists of building a direct relationship with readers. This can (and should) be done via several routes, but a primary avenue is through an author's website. This is the one place where readers can learn everything about you, from your books and upcoming projects to who you are as an author. Once your website is up and running, you can control and manage the content and tone, ensuring you can confidently point readers to your site in all your other marketing efforts, making it the central hub all about you. Author websites must be professionally designed and built, regularly updated and contain relevant and interesting information about you and your writing – including buy links. A good website will grow with you and your writing. Troubador has produced hundreds of websites for our authors since launching the service - you can explore our portfolio and learn more about what we do via Troubador websites.

3. Book Marketing Services: Social Media Marketing

Alongside a website, most authors are now active on one or more social media platforms. Social media can be a powerful tool for engaging with an audience, but you need to make sure you understand who your readers are and what platforms they use to maximise your opportunities to use the channels effectively. We’ve looked at this in more depth in a previous article (How do readers discover new books), but the main takeaways from successful social media use are: 

  1. Understand who your readers are and what social media platforms they interact with. It’s better to use fewer social media channels well than try to manage all platforms. Follow similar authors or authors you enjoy reading to see the kind of content they post and what gets the most engagement. Tailor your content to your readers' interests and preferences.
  2. Post regularly to keep your audience engaged and post interesting and informative content. Ideas include writing tips, book reviews and behind-the-scenes glimpses at your writing and publishing processes. 
  3. Respond to comments, messages and mentions and build a community with your readers.
  4. Visual content (on most platforms) attracts more engagement than text-only posts. So look at creating or commissioning graphics and videos to use. Cover reveals and unboxing videos are easy wins.
  5. Use hashtags to help give your posts wider visibility. 

If you are looking to learn more about how to utilise social media to build you author brand, we have written free guide that you can download below. 

4. Book Marketing Services: Email Marketing

Building an email list allows you to communicate directly with your readers via email newsletters. While this can seem intimidating, it is actually relatively simple and most email marketing platforms (such as Mailchimp) have free entry-level options where you can use templates and manage your contacts. If you have a website, including a newsletter sign-up form is a good idea, so that you can start to build your mailing list. Make sure you follow GDPR data rules, however, when collecting and emailing subscribers. Find out how one author utilized newsletter mailing lists in her own marketing.

5. Book Marketing Services: Press Release and Media Outreach

Media coverage can increase your book’s visibility and have an impact on sales. Troubador works with hundreds of authors a year who want a high-quality media outreach campaign which aims to get some press and media coverage for a book and an author. If undertaking your own press and media outreach here are our top tips: 

  1. Identify your target audience. Research which media your readers engage with and what kind of content they consume. This will help you choose the right platforms and messages to speak direct to that audience. 
  2. Prepare a professional media kit. This means a press release that clearly speaks to the audience you have already identified. Include an author bio, book synopsis, high-quality images and contact information. This will make it easy for journalists, bloggers and influencers to access all the information they need. Be aware that the press release should be altered to appeal to all the different angles and audiences you have identified. Sometimes the most compelling story will be about you more than the book you are promoting. 
  3. Develop a list of relevant media contacts. Include bloggers, journalists, podcasters and influencers in your genre, and then – at the appropriate time – send out your media release. The appropriate time is usually when you have copies of the book available for sale - too early and anyone who wants to make a purchase finds the book is not for sale and can lose interest. 

6. Book Marketing Services: Book Trailers and Video Marketing

Video content is highly engaging and statistics indicate that increasing numbers of consumers are engaging with video and that conversion rates (the numbers of consumers who go on to purchase a product after watching a video) are also increasing. Authors can utilize the power of video content by creating book trailers and by creating their own videos around writing and the different stages of publishing. For authors writing in some genres and targeting certain audiences, social media platforms such as TikTok and video platforms such as YouTube should become an important part of their marketing strategy. Author videos can be more informal in style – but book trailers are more akin to movie trailers and require more polish. Troubador can create video trailers for you too.

Book Marketing Services: Conclusion

Modern indie authors must utilise an entire range of different marketing techniques to maximise their success and to bring their books to the attention of their audience. Authors will likely have the know-how and skills to tackle some, but not necessarily all, of these alone, and so seeking out professional help when needed can make all the difference when planning what book marketing services you need to undertake. In all cases, planning ahead, scheduling tasks and recording what actions you have taken, can help you stay on top of the book marketing you are undertaking.