EBooks are different. Every writer knows this when they make the decision to self-publish. There are no pages to "flip through." OK, that's fine because I like computers. They are typically less expensive than print. Great! Often, you'll read work from a writer you might have never heard of before, as they decided to self-publish. Wonderful: I don't like others telling me what I should and shouldn't like. As a self-published writer, you're going to have to do your own marketing. Say what?
Writing the book is the easy part. Let me repeat that: writing the book is the easy part. The next hardest bit is going through the editing process. Tying for that spot, depending on your level of tech know-how, is formatting your ebook. The hardest part of self-publishing is marketing (read: selling your book). If you've got a business or marketing degree: then you've got a leg up. If you're a "think outside of the box" sort of person, that's great too. However, unless you've mastered how to both read and change people's minds: marketing can be a tough hill to climb.
The most important thing to keep in mind, especially for new writers, is that exposure is critically important. It doesn't matter if you write the greatest book of your time if the general public (beyond friends and family) have never heard of you. Even if your book is still in manuscript form, now is the time to get your name out there. If your book is already published and available to readers, now is the time to get creative.
There is no set path to building a base of readers; however, you can't lose site of what helps to attract interested readers in the first place. Good writing. How do you let your readers know that you're book is full of good writing? Therein lies the rub of marketing: you have to tell them, without you telling them. Put another way, you've got to get the word out. This may mean stepping out of your comfort zone when it comes to using social media, or even considering the help of a smaller marketing/promotional company. Regardless of which general direction you decide to go, remember that, even in today's tech-filled world, word-of-mouth counts.
This week, I'll be looking at some of the ways to increase visibility, using no-budget marketing. As part of this experiment, "Of Murder and Monsters" will be available for FREE for three days, from June 10th to June 12th. After the promotion ends, I'll be discussing what worked and what didn't, as well as what I've been doing to get my name out there before and after publishing. Check back on Friday for the update.