How Indie Authors can Capitalize on Last-Minute Holiday Shoppers

by | Dec 8, 2016 | Book Marketing Basics

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In our increasingly digital world, “last-minute” takes on new meaning when it comes to holiday shopping. Especially when it comes to electronic books. As indie authors, I know you’re always looking for new ways to increase your sales. And, I recently wrote about how to start a book marketing campaign this time of year, but what about giving existing books a boost during the holiday shopping season? We talk a lot about ways to maximize your book marketing, but here are some ways that you can continue getting in front of people and capitalize on those last-minute holiday shoppers.

1. It’s not too late for Gift Guides!

If you missed our blog post on pitching gift guides, then be sure to check it out! Although lots of the big holiday gift guides may be done, local media—newspapers and broadcast—may still have some last-minute gift guides coming up. Reach out to those resources with a quick phone call (be prepared with your pitch). Plus, you may find some last-minute gift guides with your favorite bloggers!

2. Super Fan Groups & Newsletters

Have a VIP group of super fans? (if not, you should!) Offer a members-only sale to people in your VIP group and your email newsletter. You can even consider giving them a custom discount code for your book on your site.  If they love your book(s) so much, they’ll definitely consider buying copies for their friends!

3. eBook Promotions

eBook Promotions are always a great way to boost your sales and capitalize on any buzz you’re generating elsewhere. You’re already considering offering your Super Fans a special deal, and so the eBook promotion gives you an opportunity to share the love with even more people and potentially grow your VIP groups. If you’ve never done an eBook promo, or could use a refresher on how indie authors can make the most of this strategy, learn more here.

4. Paid Facebook Advertising

Although I always try to maximize my free Facebook coverage, the holiday season is a great time to take advantage of some of those sponsored posts. Be sure to use a compelling image that includes your website and any special pricing (remember words on the image should be minimal). Plus, don’t forget to include any pertinent links and calls to action in the description. Want some tips on harvesting the epic marketing power of Facebook? Consider these ideas! While you’re planning the post, check out the ideas in this article to get the maximum coverage out of your post.

5. Giveaways & Contests!

Offering incentives is a popular marketing strategy – because it works!  And there are endless ways to make a giveaway promotion or contest work. First, there are always Goodreads giveaways (keep in mind, these need some advance notice), but you can also do a wide variety of giveaway promotions. You could include a special bookmark or other fabulous “extra” with the first 25 books sold during a special promotion. Or maybe you’ll want to offer an incentive to buy the whole series – if people buy 3 or more books, you’ll include a special tote bag to help carry everything. Another idea is to do a “caption this” contest on your social media and then choose a random response to win – either a book, or something wonderful of your making.

In the end, there are lots of great ways for indie authors to make the most of the gift-buying season, including last-minute shoppers. Have some other great techniques that have worked? We’d love to hear about your book promotion successes. Interested in working with us on a custom book marketing campaign? Well, we’d love to get you started!


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