This year is wrapping up, no pun intended, which means as an indie author you should already be thinking of ways to make 2018 your best year yet.
There are a lot of aspects to book marketing, and I know it can get overwhelming, but here are 5 things to consider doing differently next year to shake up your approach.
If sales were lackluster in 2017, consider whether or not your cover may be to blame.
I know this is a sensitive issue for some authors, but honestly, suck it up.
My suggestion is to look at the bestsellers, I can almost assure you you’ll see similar themes, fonts, visuals, ratios, etc. Check this guest post from Girl Friday on book cover rules.
Book covers are one area where you do want to follow the crowd and give readers what they expect to see.
If you want to catch buyers you’re not directly reaching with your own marketing efforts, a standout cover that screams your genre is the next best bet.
Your Social Media
If social media is overwhelming you, or if you haven’t even tried to tackle it yet, plan on making it less scary in 2018.
The trick to social media book marketing as an indie author is to be on the platforms that matter.
Don’t try to be everywhere.
So depending on who your reader market is, there’s likely a best platform or two to be on. It’s easy to find demographics for Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest and LinkedIn online so do a little research.
Once you figure out where your readers like to hang out, commit to mastering that platform alone. The return you get in regards to engagement with your fans is priceless.
Your Publishing Schedule
There are a lot of factors that go into how often an indie author publishes, but fiction authors should try to publish as often as possible.
Fiction fans love an aggressive publishing schedule and they reward their favorite authors with some pretty intense loyalty.
A lot of successful indie authors say you should aim for 4 books a year. More if you can swing it.
Non-fiction authors should try to publish once a year, if possible. Remember, non-fiction content generally ages rapidly, especially as far as media and news is concerned.
So if you write non-fiction, remember, each book doesn’t have to be very long, but you’ll really benefit by showing you’re staying on top of your topic and knowledge area.
Your Superfan Group
Do you have a superfan group?
Superfans are the people who live and breathe their favorite indie authors.
They’ll be the first to buy, the first to review, they engage with you on social, and they recommend your work to friends.
They are your book marketing gold.
So how do you build a super fan group? Start paying attention! Keep your eyes open for those who are consistently engaging with you in some way or another, and make them feel special.
Give them bonus content, special swag – let them know they’re appreciated – and you’ll be rewarded 10 fold.
Your Amazon Optimization
How often do you update your Amazon keywords and categories?
When was the last time you jazzed up your Author Central profile or your book description?
You should be checking on all these things quarterly, especially your keywords.
And consider changing your description around specific holidays or time of year to make your book seem more timely.
For example, if your book would make a good Christmas gift, say so. If you write self-help, you should tie it in to new year’s resolutions.
Stumped in how to even tackle this? Don’t fret. We do Amazon Optimization differently. Contact us to see how we’re different from the rest.
None of us can do this book marketing thing perfectly all the time.
What we can do, is remember to be self-reflective and commit to learning, always learning.
When your book isn’t doing well, there’s almost always something you can do.
And successful indie authors rise to the occasion and figure out what they need to change or do better.