Is it the author’s job to market their books
Not knowing how is one thing, but not wanting to is the first indicator that even a very good book is going to fail.
Authors are the center of their own expertise and stories. That’s how a platform is built in the first place. Which is of course the best way to market a book. That’s also one of the biggest criteria publishers have for deciding on which books to invest in.
Do you think of your book publishing journey as a startup or a business?
And your product is your book. So why would you not market it?
Let’s say, as a business owner (not an author), you were to land distribution or an investor for your company. You wouldn’t expect them to market your products for you. Instead, you would expect them to give you opportunity to try additional ways to get your product in more people’s hands and to make additional profit. That’s good for you and for the investor. And that’s what investing is all about.
Why would it be different for your book?
But authors so often think that just because they’ve spent time into producing a quality product, or have a great idea, that it’s not their responsibility to market the book.
Isn’t that what the publisher is for?
If you’re unfamiliar with how business works try starting one. If you’re unfamiliar with how book publishing works talk to authors and ask them. And read this.
Take a lesson from a published author:
“I do consider myself a writer as much as an entrepreneur. They both have a lot in common. You have to sell books just like you have to sell yourself and your business. They go hand in hand.” — Dave Kerpen
As CEO of Likeable Local and Chairman of Likeable Media, as well as a NY Times Bestselling author of 3 books, Dave knows what it takes to get his book in the hands of a lot of people.
And after some experience in the industry, he understands that you have to sell your idea whether you’re writing a book or building a business.
Think you’re different?
Authors invariably procrastinate. And Dave Kerpen is no different. But you have to put in the work. That’s how success is built. And that’s how great ideas get shared. Relying on your publisher or a book marketer is not the answer.
At the same time, relying solely on yourself is not the answer either. If it was, you’d be in some trouble.
Why would you need a publisher then?
You as an author make up a critical ingredient to any immensely successful book launch. And without distribution and investment, or without a publishing team, or editors, or a platform of loyal readers, your book won’t make it past the average statistics that haunt authors who self-publish on Amazon, or wherever else.
Can you sell more than 50 copies of your book in it’s lifetime? You’d be batting above average. If you think it’s easy, sure. It can be.
But forget average statistics. How about 1,000 copies? 10,000? 100,000?
Because that’s what it takes to start spreading your message or story to people around the world. That’s what it takes to start having influence and a real impact with your words. And that’s what it takes to make real money in books.
Not knowing how is understandable. Not wanting to try is something completely different, but all too common.
That’s why book publishers invest in authors who want to actively sell their book. It’s your product.
People don’t naturally expand their scope of influence. Even entrepreneurs are not naturally good at self-promotion. It’s a proactive art form that few people do really well at.
Don’t know where to start? Or where to start getting started?
Start by sharing your work. Build a Facebook group. Create a website. Start a podcast. Take business cards. Add one person every day. Write a proposal. Read a blog. Read a book. Take a nap. It really doesn’t matter where.
Which is kinda what writing a book is like.
And marketing one.
Apply here for our next batch of authors in a book accelerator program.
Or read about the $10k book crowdfunding secret on Publishizer.