In these times of uncertainty and constant readjustment, digital marketing has never been more important. Quarantine and stay-at-home orders may have affected your event plans, but there are countless ways to market your book online and on social media.
Read on for some helpful and creative tips for marketing your book from home!
Social media is crucial for promoting your book. Though platforms like Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook might seem intimidating at first, they are a great way to grow your audience, boost publicity for your book, and further establish you as an author. Social media is a space where you can be as creative as you want, and invite your readers along for the ride. Here are some ideas to get your readers engaged and your book selling!
Using the “Live” Feature
Most social media platforms, like Instagram, Facebook, and Twitter, have an option to “go live”, or livestream. This feature allows you to broadcast from your phone. Your livestream will be available for your followers to watch in real time, or to watch later if you choose to keep the livestream up on your profile page. This allows you to connect with your readers and supporters directly and personally. There are so many ways you can use this feature!
Virtual events are an amazing way to actively promote your book through quarantine. Maybe you were planning a reading at a local bookstore, but it was canceled. No worries — just set up your phone and you can host your very own event right from your living room! Looking for a fun way to show off your amazing book cover? Throw a virtual cover reveal party! Not only is this a great way to get your readers excited, it’s a wonderful tool to get your readers engaged. Let them join in on the fun! Virtual events can be accessed any time anywhere in the world. Without geographic barriers, so many more people will be able to attend your virtual event and hear all about your new book.
Virtual Book Club
Another way to keep your readers engaged is starting a virtual book club! You could even choose your own book, hosting a discussion where you can get feedback from your readers and even answer their questions. Not only does this encourage followers to buy and read your book, but it asks them to think critically and connect with the book on a deeper level. What better way to promote a book club than a Q&A with the author?
Giveaways and Contests
Hosting games like giveaways and contests is a great way to engage your followers and drum up excitement for the grand prize — your book! There are so many ways you can get creative thinking of different rules and reveals. Maybe all your followers need to enter the contest is to use a special hashtag, or post a photo promoting your book, or simply follow your profile page. Giveaways and contests work well across all social media platforms, though Instagram encourages more direct communication and visual marketing.
Collaboration in quarantine? It’s easier than you think! Let’s go back to our earlier scenario — a canceled reading at a local bookstore. You could host a reading on your own, or you could collaborate with that bookstore’s social media pages. You could “go live” on the live feature with the bookstore, take over their “story” feature for the day, or even just collaborate on a post for their profile that promotes your event and your book. Do you have a few writer friends? Throw a virtual festival! Have everyone read their latest story or poem, again on the “live” feature. Strengthening connections will not only help you promote your book, but develop a great network of fellow writers.
Maximize Your Online Presence
Right now is the perfect time to work on developing your online presence. Platforms like social media and a personal website will help readers find you and your book online. Check out our previous blog post, “A Guide to Starting Your Author Website” to walk you through creating a website and all the online services Brandylane Publishers provides.
Blogging is a valuable way to communicate with your readers and start building a community. There are countless ways to make blogging work for you. You could update your readers about any book news, milestones in the publishing process, and ways they can support you and your book. If you have a website, regularly posting on a blog will incentivize readers to continue visiting your site. This will give your website more traffic, which will boost the site in search engines.
If you have lots of information or fun things to share, a newsletter is a creative and direct way to ensure your readers keep up to date with any news and events. Your newsletters don’t have to be purely informative however, you can get as creative as you want! Whether you send out a monthly wrap-up of writing, book news, and publicity or you send out a poem every day of the week, a newsletter allows you to solidify a subscriber base of readers and keep them engaged with you and your book. There are plenty of platforms where you can design, write, and send out your newsletter for free, like Mailchimp. You can also see the analytics of each newsletter, meaning you can see how many people sign up for your newsletter and read your emails.
Reaching out to reviewers and publications
Digital networking is so important right now, and a great way to grow your network is reaching out to reviewers and publications. There are countless reviewers, bloggers, and social media influencers in the book world. Reaching out to these reviewers will grow your network, boost publicity, and gain access to new audiences. While you’re at it, reach out to a few small publications as well. These publications could review your book, feature your submitted work, or interview you about your book.
Marketing your book from home has never been more important. Luckily, it’s also never been easier. Marketing online and on social media can be daunting, but we hope these tips will inspire you to get creative and get posting!