Friday, October 24, 2008

Learn How to Promote Your Books Online ...

© Dorothy Thompson 2008 all rights reserved

... to Keep Them on Bookstore Shelves

I want to thank Marta for inviting me here today to talk to you about promoting your books online.

Promoting online requires a lot of work on the author’s part, but the advantages so outweigh the few hours a day you should put into this. For the print-on-demand or self-published author, it’s their lifeline to selling books, but to the mainstream published author – you know the one with the advances and the distribution we all dream about – online book promotion can actually keep those books on the shelves for as long as they continue to use this approach to sell their books.

I had a client email me a few days ago upset that if he did not make those sales by a certain month, the publisher would have no choice but to pull the book. The book seller was on his back and was forced to let him know that this will be the case if he does not sell more books than he was doing.

My client was quite upset to the point where he was willing to try anything to sell his book and a virtual book tour was his best option at this point.

What I’m finding is that there are quite a few mainstream published authors who aren’t aware how powerful online book promotion truly is. The print-on-demand and self-published authors already know this, but for the mainstream published authors, selling their books in bricks-and-mortar stores becomes top priority. Of course, this is a good thing but what if your competition is fierce? What if there are lots of other books similar to yours? What if the economy worsens and, god forbid, no one wants to make that special trip to a book store to buy your book out of the thousands to choose from?

So much pressure. And I feel sorry for them, I truly do, but this is what I tell them.

Create an online awareness and grab those thousands of Internet users who surf for online purchases every day. It’s a gold mine out there, folks. Create a blog. Write articles. Query bloggers to interview you or let you write a guest post in exchange for a free book. Join social networks. Learn how to network with fellow authors and readers.

And, lastly, put your book on virtual book tour. You can do this yourself or you can hire us to do it for you, but whatever you choose, you won’t ever regret the experience and, yes, it will sell books for you. My client has reported increases in Amazon sales and website hits, so the potential is there for everyone.

Stop worrying and hit the blogosphere with news about your book. Creating an enormous online presence should be your # 1 goal to sell that book. Do it before it’s too late.

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Dorothy Thompson is CEO/Founder of Pump Up Your Book Promotion. You can visit her website at Sign up for her FREE newsletter or comment on her clients’ blog stops to win a free virtual book tour or $50 Amazon gift certificate each month!

"We take books to the virtual level!"


Marta Stephens said...

Dorothy, thanks so much for stopping by MB4!I couldn't agree with you more about Internet promotions. I'm so grateful to live in a world of computers and Internet. Certainly makes me appreicate the work of authors who came before us in the days of Royal typewriters and snail mail.

For those interested, check out the series of six articles on my website, devoted to "Developing an Internet Presense."

Aaron Paul Lazar said...

Dorothy, I've discussed this topic with many authors who hold "traditional" contracts with big publishers, and you are right on the money. Unless you are one of their top few authors, targeted for the "A" list and lucky enough to get $75,000 in promotional money thrown your way for print ads, bookstore ads, or more, many of these wonderful writers fall exactly into the catagory that the small press and self pubbed authors belong to. A friend of mine - sort of "old school" ("my publisher set up my one and only booksigning" and I've done no promotion on my own")sold about 5,000 books, only to be told it wasn't enough and his second book was canceled. I don't know if he'll get out there and join those of us trying to storm the Internet and every possible local venue with our lovable and persistant presence, but I hope so!

Thanks for a wonderful article. I hope it inspires more authors to get out there and connect with the world!

Kim Smith said...

Dorothy, thank you so much for such a great post. I do not have a book out yet to tout, but that isn't stopping me. Rather, it is inducing me to get the ball rolling earlier. I wish I DID have something to pass off to someone (as having an actual product is far easier to sell!), but I know when it happens, I will be a few steps ahead of the game, and most assuredly from great articles like this one. Best, Kim

Maryannwrites said...

Have to second and third what Dorothy said. I did a virtual tour that her company set up in September and the hits to my Web site doubled in that time, as did visitors to my blog. Other than one or two people who contacted me directly to purchase a signed copy of my book, I don't know how sales were affected, but I am sure it boosted some sales.