Ten Sure-fire Tips to Promote Your Book Online

So, you are on the verge of publishing your first book, huh? Now, it’s time to start marketing it. It’s never really too soon to start publicizing your book. A broad Internet presence is worth almost ten thousand more sales of your book’s copies, and is completely free.

Moreover, who knows, if you are well known on the net and you are writing a new book, then the publishers may approach you than the other way round. Here we will look at ten ways you can use Internet to get top sales for your book.

1. Begin a blog: This is always the first step to start. Having a popular blog means a lot. Though it is hard work to push your blog to the top of traffic rankings, it will be extremely rewarding. There are many free platforms like Blogger and WordPress to start your blog, though it is highly recommend that you hire your own domain and hosting space for it.

Post the information on your book on this blog, with Amazon link for purchase, and invite visitors to leave comments. You can even post excerpts of chapters, summary of your book, and positive reader comments. Invite readers, who have already purchased your book, to post reviews. Fake some reviews if absolutely necessary.

2. Build a profile in all social networking communities: This is a very important and often forgotten step to take. Millions of people visit social networking communities like FaceBook, MySpace, Orkut, etc., every day, and they are among the top ten most visited sites of all time. So, a good follower count on these communities can skyrocket your popularity in days. Link these profiles to your blog, and invite your friends to it—cross promotion.

Also, mention in your social networking profile that you are the author of your book, with links to reviews and store.

3. Write profusely: You are a writer, so do your job—write, write and write. There are several websites on the lookout for your articles. Even the site you are reading accepts contributions. Submit your articles to as many websites and blogs as possible. Some of the places where you can submit are these: A List Apart (one of the greatest places to start, for technical writers), article directories like EzineArticles, Associated Content (though unethical), etc., and weblogs (like mine) that accept guest posting.

You can go ahead and approach even the news sites if you have any newsworthy content they may be looking for. These news stories, if accepted, will go down to tens of thousands of readers, and a thousand of them may subscribe to your blog. This means a lot to your promotional work.

4. Read other blogs and comment a lot. When you visit blogs and websites related to your book’s subject, you can comment and insert your book’s Amazon link.

Recently, Problogger, Darren Rowse had a video post that gave a good idea of the click stats on his blog. There was a post he made a year ago that was getting some steady search engine traffic over several months. And this post had about a hundred comments. Some of these commenters had inserted backlinks to specific posts on their blogs, and the click density shown by CrazyEgg (a traffic tracking tool) showed that some of these comment links got hundreds of clicks on them every day.

If you post comments to more popular blogs, you will see several people visiting your blog. And that can be converted easily to sales.

5. Write press releases: Write as many press releases as possible, for each post you make on your blog. You can get sites like PRWeb, PRLog, iNewsWire, etc., to publish your press releases, and if they become as popular as to be picked up by news sites such as Google News, then it’s your lucky time. Your site will readily get a hundred thousand more visitors.

Moreover, the press releases you submit are actually ranked higher than normal sites by search engines. This means you will pick up some search engine traffic as well. I recently wrote, in this site, a review of Tamil film, Dasavatharam, and it was submitted to PRLog. Most of the traffic the post now gets is from that press release site.

6. Email your friends. Email your friends and ask them to forward your mail to their friends. This is a way of viral marketing. Ask them to subscribe to your blog, read the posts, and recommend the site to their friends. This way, without email spamming, you can reach thousands of people. Also, insert the book information and link to Amazon store.

However, it all depends on your friends. If they promote you well, then you are lucky.

7. Maintain constant communication with your readers and followers. This is extremely important for the success of your weblog and thereby your book. Be prompt to answer any queries you receive on your blog. When you get comments to your blog, you should visit the commenter’s website, if he has one, and answer the comment there, not in your blog. This way, you can build a clear relationship with your readers. This is one of the basic online ethics.

If the readers of your site get their comments answered in their sites, their respect for you will double, and they will come to your site more often and recommend it to their friends. If possible, when leaving comments to your follower’s website, mention your book with Amazon link.

8. Promote yourself as the owner of your blog: Always be known online as the possessor of your blog. This means, your site is your identity online. So, the better your site, the better it is for you.

To link your name to your site, use the URL field always when you comment to other blogs, so that the visitors can click on it and land your site. Another means is to sign up in social media communities that accept OpenID login (like Ma.gnolia) and use your site as OpenID. Many blogging platforms provide you the OpenID. You can even get your site to act as an OpenID, with some third party OpenID providers like LiveJournal or MyOpenID. (Learn more about OpenID here)

You can insert the link to your book, wherever appropriate.

9. Social media submissions: Submit all your articles to social media sites like Digg, Technorati, Twitter, Del.icio.us, etc., and get direct backlinks from them. When you have submitted something useful for the readers, you have no idea how many of them will link to these stories or how many of them will vote them to the top. These promoted stories can bring hell a lot of traffic to your blog. Always insert the link to purchase your book in your submissions wherever appropriate.

10. Promote yourself as the author of the book: As the final, and most important step, that has to infuse all these steps mentioned above, get yourself known as the author of the book you published or are about to publish. For this, place a discernible banner on your site, your social networking profile, etc., and let your visitors know where they can purchase your book. This way, you are sure to get tens of thousands of more purchases for your book.

Though the offline promotion to your book is important, it is more rewarding to do it online. These steps mentioned above and any other online promotion method, which you have invented and which I would love to know through comments in this post, will effectively promote your book to a bestseller.

Copyright © Lenin Nair 2008

3 Opinions:

  1. Another great post Lenin! I came to the site because my RSS feed hadn't picked anything up in the last five days and I was getting worried that you ran away lol.

    There is a message thread on CC from Ed that I found to be rather quite interesting. It was on the subject of writing concisely. What are your opinions on the subject?

    Also, I've got a really stupid question. I have recently started a travel blog and am wondering what I do with it after it's built up or I decide I'm finished. What sort of ideas to you recommend??

    I've found a few places that 'buy' your blog and pay you to continue to post in it, but it sounds a little funny to me.

    I look forward to the next post...

    ReplyDelete
  2. This is a great post. There is a lot of helpful and useful information.

    Thank you for sharing.

    Tinisha Nicole Johnson
    Author, Writer and Poet
    http://www.TinishaNicoleJohnson.com

    ReplyDelete
  3. I find it troubling that you suggest faking positive book reviews. It demonstrates a lack of integrity on your part, and even worse--you suggest that other people should also lie to churn profit. I was new to your blog and just from reading this post you have lost all credibility with me.

    I suggest you find genuine ways to publicize your book. If you ever reach any respectable level of fame, this will come back to haunt you. Be careful.

    ReplyDelete

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