authors, book marketing, helpful hints, Indie book publishing, Publishing, self publishing

7 secrets of successful self published authors (The last two secrets revealed).

If you have been following this blog, you know I have been doing a series of blog posts titled, “Seven secrets of successful self published authors” In previous posts, I have shared the first five secrets: The previous secrets I have shared are as follows. Successul self published authors:

  1. Can describe their audience
  2. Believe in their work
  3. Set a deadline when they want to hold the first copy of their book
  4. Understand their goals and publishing options
  5. Know the power of social media and have a plan to take advantage of it.

In this post, I want to share the last two secrets. The sixth secret is plan your marketing before you finish your manuscript.

I can’t tell you how many authors write, write, write, write, get their book published, and then they think about marketing. That is too late. You want to actually start planning your marketing while you are writing. Describe your audience, determine how you’re going to reach them, and decide what help you’ll need.  In fact, you should start building your potential reader base even before your title is live. One idea I have seen work well is give potential readers a few different covers to pick from and let them vote. It is a great way to get potential readers engaged with and anticipating the launch of your book even before it is live.

I have had authors come back to me and thank me for encouraging them to do a book launch event

The seventh and final secret is plan a book launch event for when your title is live.

I can’t tell you how many times I have had authors come back to me and thank me for encouraging them to do a book launch event. Along with these events being a key motivator for completing the manuscript, they are also a lot of fun.  I know authors who have done an event in conjunction with a family reunion.  I know authors who have published a christian book and held their launch party at a church. My favorite example is an author who wrote a mystery book based in her hometown. One of the settings for the mystery was a restaurant in the town. She actually held  her book launch event at that restaurant. Since then the restaurant now sells her book at the cash register and  they have actually named a menu item after her book.  I think that is pretty cool, but the point to all these examples is publishing a book is quite an accomplishment and it deserves a celebration.  Don’t miss out on the opportunity. It allows you to connect to readers and get your word-of-mouth campaign started.


6 thoughts on “7 secrets of successful self published authors (The last two secrets revealed).

  1. I hope this is correct! I’m self-publishing my first urban fantasy novel Fire Baptized on Feb 20, 2011.

    I know my audience is urban fantasy, and I’m extremly familiar with that genre. I launched this agressive marketing campaign that includes three blog tours, advertisements on urban fantasy sites, and several goodreads giveaways.

    I’m hoping for sucess, but reasonable enough to know that I’ll be happy if I just sell a few books.

    In the end, I just love to write.

    • keithogorek says:

      You are getting started on the right foot. It sounds like you have a plan for launch and know your audience, but I would also think about a lauch party or event. Also, don’t lose heart. As the old saying goes, “it takes a long time to become an overnight success”. Please keep me posted on your progress

  2. Kenya Taylor Wright,
    Hi! I somehow and luckily found my way to Keith Oreck’s blog nearly a year ago and how happily I follow his digest of trends in self-publishing. There is an explosion of Indie-Pub advice givers and marketers (a distinct difference) but consistently Keith’s perspectives are level-headed and steady, never erratic or risky.
    I’ve been self-publishing for two years now, with two Kindle/UK best sellers behind me the only element of your launch plan that I would advise changing is the advertisements segment. I have yet to spend a dime on advertising a book title to have it ‘pay off’ in attracting avid readers to my genre. In fact, for my first novel I spent $800 on Google ads – unbelievably – without ONE book sale as a result.
    Take a look at the amount you are spending on advertising your urban fantasy novel, if it even approaches what I spent let me warn you/advise you, as a fellow author, to slide that ‘tier’ of your book launch to the END of your book launch campaign. What Keith says about ‘know your audience’ is the biggest truism out there. Make friends with the people you want to read your books first (via book tours, FB and Twitter et al) because paying for advertising is not much different from trying to buy friends, from my experience. It’s just not necessary once one has a solid fans base.
    I wish you all the best! Emily Hill

    • Emily,
      I must say that advice came at a perfect time. I have a tight budget and I was wondering if I should save the adds to after the book blog tours. The way the tours are spread out, it would end up being a duration of five months. It may not be necessary to immediately start paying for advertisements.

      Thanks for your reply! I will definetly keep you updated!

      • keithogorek says:

        I think the key is to define your audience and then determine where they go to get information. If it is ads, then it might make sense to do that, but chances are they follow a blog or two. If they could write about your book, it could jumpstart your marketing.

    • keithogorek says:

      Great advice. Just yesterday I had a conversation with a would be author and again emphasized the importance of defining the audience. As I told him, if you can do that successfully, then they become your marketing team.

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