As an author, you are the best person to sell your book, says Fabrizio Poli, self-published author of Your Attitude Determins Your Altitude. And treat your book as a business.
1. What kind of marketing have you done as an author?
With the help of a publicist I got two press releases out and as a result got two interviews on BBC Radio, one on ITV television and a few interviews in local papers and magazines.
I have also done some networking and spoke at some conventions. I put together a website and also undertook an email campaign which got my book from the rank of 351,000 to 52 on Amazon.co.uk in 24 hours.
2. What essential things about marketing did you wish you had known from the start?
Not to waste time putting leaflets through doors.
3. What marketing difficulties did you face as a self-publisher?
The main difficulty is time and not have the funds to hire a team or marketers/sales people. This is where networking has come in handy and organising co-op marketing campaigns.
You also have to transform yourself from author to sales person to be convincing as you are not a mainstream publisher, and treat your book as a business.
4. What did you learn from your experiences of trying to market your book?
The main thing is that as an author you are the best person to sell your book. I sold 12 copies during a book signing in Borders, purely because I would stop people in the store and ask them to have a look at my book.
5. What is the most successful piece of marketing you have done?
This was definately my Amazon email campaign. I sold 88 books in 24 hours and one person from Australia liked the book so much she ordered a further 96 copies for her business coaches.
6. What advice would you give to authors thinking about self-publishing?
First of all, before you even write the book, think about the marketing. There has to be enough content to get the press interested.
Second is to send your manuscript to 7-8 people you know with an evaluation sheet for their honest opinions. Take onboard their feedback and make changes.
Third, get yourself a good editor and proofreader. Once the book is ready, send out a pdf to 30-40 people to get reviews to incorporate these into the book for print.
Fourth, hire a publicist.
Fifth, be prepared to give away 200-300 copies to movers and shakers. These are the people who will talk about your book to others and generate sales.