Tips & tools you need to know

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You’re not a New York Times bestselling author. You don’t have a publicist. And your book sale numbers are awful. Should you quit writing books? Absolutely not!

No matter what kind of book you’ve written, or plan to write, there are many ways to reach your audience. Each of the DIY tools listed here are low or no-cost, and each of them works in its own way. One or more may be perfect for you.

All the ideas at once might seem overwhelming, but remember that you only need to do one thing at a time. As one clicks and then another, you’ll soon be reaching your audience. The bottom line is to practice selling your books one by one... “Sell one book at a time.”

Instead of trying to sell your book to faceless thousands, find one person who needs and wants your book. Offer your book to that person. Yes, slower than you want, but faster than you think, you may become a best-selling author, before you know it. Here are some of the tips you need to know:

*Start Early

The most powerful and essential steps you can take toward promoting your book begin long before the actual writing of the book. Three years before the book is published (if you can), start building a network of supporters and reviewers. Keep track of everyone you meet as you research and write the book. Pay special attention to, and make notes about, those who demonstrate a genuine enthusiasm for you and your project.

As the project evolves, keep in touch with these people. Send them an occasional email or text.

*Write a Remarkable Book

Set out to write a remarkable book. If your book is not remarkable, keep working on it until it is. Give the manuscript to ten friends and ask for honest feedback. Find a brilliant Editor (you can find such an Editor here on Paradigm Marketplace) and pay him or her to edit your manuscript. Don’t stop until your reviewers start saying things like: “I loved it! This book is amazing!” A remarkable book will generate word-of-mouth publicity. One person will read it, and recommend it to his or her friends. They will recommend it to their friends. This is the best publicity you can get.

*Arrival of your Books

Just like the arrival of a new baby, at the arrival of your finished books, bring key people together for a house party. At the house party, you could read short excerpts from your book and answer questions about the book.

*Contribute to Web Forums

Every field has at least one or two forums that people interested in your subject know and read. Find and join these forums. Contribute to them freely. Give advice and reach out. Offer to help others. When you have a book contract and/or a book title, add the title to your signature line in these forums.

*Cultivate a Positive Attitude about Book Promotion

Think of book promotion as storytelling. The story you are telling is why you wrote your book, how it can help others, and how the world will benefit from your book. If you can develop a positive attitude about book promotion, people will pick up on it, and tune in immediately. Some writers resent the chore of marketing. Their attitude seems to be, “I’m a writer. Marketing is the publisher’s job. Promoting my own book shouldn’t be my responsibility.”

Unfortunately, unless you are Wole Soyinka or Malcolm Gladwell, the publisher probably won’t have the budget to market your book. If you don’t promote your book, no one else will.

*Create a Book Pitch

Consider writing at least three sales pitches for your book: 10 seconds, 30 seconds, and 60 seconds. When someone asks what the book is about, give them the 10 second pitch. If the person responds with interest, have a longer pitch ready! Practice your pitches on friends until they tell you the pitches work.

*Make and Post Online Videos

Make a few 5 minute videos of yourself talking about key issues in your field. Put the book title and URL for purchase on the bottom of the video screen and in the credits. Post your videos on several of the many video sharing sites including sites like YouTube.

Plan on following your promotion plan, at least an hour a day, for at least a year. Resolve to do something every day on promotion. Remember: follow-up and persistence are the keys to success.