Self-publishing your own books is a great way to get your ideas out there and share your vision with the world. Though it seems simple in theory — rolling out a successful marketing campaign may not exactly be your specialty. If that’s the case, there’s no need to worry. Technology has come a long way and so have the tools that you have at your disposal to market your creations.
Having an understanding of some powerful marketing tools can help you transform a lackluster rollout of your book into an interest-piquing powerhouse of a campaign. By utilizing some unlikely tools, you can market your book like a seasoned professional and get it into the hands of a plethora of eager readers.
Tool #1: Data Processing and Analysis
Of all the tools out there that you thought might help you with self-publishing, you probably didn’t know that data processing and analysis weren’t at the top of the list. However, data processing and analysis can be an extremely useful way for you to craft a potent marketing campaign that actually helps you move books and get them into the hands of countless readers.
Before you can understand how data processing and analysis can help you craft a successful self-publishing marketing campaign, you’ll first have to understand data processing and analysis.
Data processing can be defined as the alteration of data — and other raw forms of information — into easy-to-understand information. This process typically includes several key steps, which include:
Through the utilization of these steps, data is transformed into easy-to-digest formats — such as tables or graphs — from which you can more easily analyze data and glean useful insights.
Before you let the concept of data processing and analysis overwhelm you, it’s important to remember that you don’t have to take each of these individual steps. There are data processing tools that you can utilize to collect, structure, and present data in ways that are easy to understand.
Understandably, you may be wondering how data processing and analysis can help you as a self-publishing author. The truth is, to launch a successful marketing campaign, you’ll have to have a clear understanding of who your target audience is and the most effective ways to encourage them to purchase your book.
Data processing and analysis can help you do exactly that. By collecting data and analyzing it, you’ll be able to craft the perfect marketing campaign that allows you to sell as many books as possible. You may be thinking to yourself that this seems unnecessary — you may have written this book for a specific type of person, and you already know your target audience. Unfortunately — though hunches can be a great place to start — one’s preconceived notions may not always be correct.
When spending both time and money on a marketing campaign, you’ll want to be sure that they are effective. Data processing and analysis allows you to do this with relative accuracy and have the ability to get you closer to ensuring that your marketing campaign will be successful.
Let’s say, for example, that you’ve written a book about pottery. You may be under the impression that your target audience is older adults aged 50-60. Data processing and analysis can help you determine if your hunch is correct. Upon doing some research, with the help of data processing tools, you may find that there has been a recent uptick in pottery interest in adults aged 20-35.
This being the case, your marketing campaign will have a completely different target audience — which will affect many aspects of the campaign ranging from the tone of voice to the platforms utilized.
In addition to helping you find clarity about who your target audience is, data processing and analysis can also help you figure out how to market your book most effectively when it comes to converting customers and encouraging them to make purchases.
For example, you may be under the impression that Meta ads may be the best way to get your ads in front of people. Data processing and analysis can help you uncover the fact that TikTok users are actually more likely to see an ad and make an immediate purchase. Whatever the actual insights you uncover are, data processing tools can help you gain a clearer understanding of the truth behind your audience’s behaviors and actions.
Though you should do your own research and find which tools work best for you, some popular and powerful data processing tools include:
Tool #2: Advertising
Advertising is a marketing tool that most of the general public is aware of. As an author embarking on a journey of self-publishing your work, you’ve probably already decided to market your product with advertising. What many people don’t know is that there are many different forms of advertising — each with its own pros and cons — that can work better for different products or services.
Having an understanding of some of the different types of advertising methods can help you decide which is best for your personal self-publishing marketing campaign. Here is an overview of some of the most popular forms of advertising that you may want to utilize in your campaign.
One of the oldest forms of advertising — that you’re surely familiar with as a human on earth — is print advertising. Put simply, print advertising is an advertisement that is printed in physical form, typically in magazines, newspapers, or flyers. Though many have been focusing more on digital advertisements in recent decades, print advertising is still a potent source of marketing that has the power to pique your audience’s interests.
Print advertising has a few key benefits that its digital advertising counterparts don’t. For starters, many individuals show a deeper sense of trust in businesses and organizations who utilize print ads.
In addition, many people seem to have an easier time recalling print ads than digital ads. This is likely because we as people are spending increasing amounts of time on digital platforms and devices, making digital ads less potent in some cases. As such, print advertising offers you a way to make a strong impression on your audience, and — hopefully — convert more sales.
As a self-publishing author, print ads may be a viable channel of marketing for your campaign. Many people enjoy reading books by authors who are from the same geographical regions as themselves, and publishing print ads in local magazines or newspapers may be able to help you reach your target audience in an effective and powerful way.
Social Media Advertising
Social media can be a powerful advertising tool for you to market your book to audiences. By utilizing platforms such as Twitter, Meta, Instagram, and TikTok, you can get your ads in front of already engaged audiences. When social media advertising is used in tandem with data processing tools, it can be an extremely effective way to get your ads in front of the people who are most likely to purchase your book as a result.
Social media advertising makes it easier than ever to target specific demographics. If you’ve already done some research with the help of data processing tools, then you’ll be able to get ads in front of target audiences who are more likely to buy. This can result in a successful marketing campaign that converts customers effectively and efficiently.
For example, if through your research you’ve found that your target audience is 25-35-year-olds with an interest in sci-fi, you can utilize social media advertisements to get your ads in front of these specific individuals. This being the case, it’s likely that you’ll pique the interest of your audience and induce them to purchase your book in a way that is valuable and effective.
Paid Search Advertising
Paid search advertising is a form of advertising that utilizes search engines to get your product in front of people who are searching for similar products. In this form of advertising, you pay search engines for this service. What makes this particular form of advertising effective is the fact that your paid search advertising will appear toward the top of the search results page, increasing the likelihood that audiences will see it.
As you may imagine, this form of advertising can be particularly effective because individuals are already searching for similar things. As such, they are more likely to engage with similar products or pages to that which they are looking for.
For example, say you’ve written a murder-mystery book. When someone goes to a search engine — typically Google — and searches something like “best mystery books” or “books like Sherlock Holmes,” your book will appear at the top of the search engine page. This being the case, it is likely that this engaged individual looking for something similar will click on your ad and engage with your marketing efforts — hopefully resulting in a purchase.
Tool #3: Taking Advantage of the Right Platforms
Though the other two tools can be used in a variety of settings to market a number of products and services, this tool is specific to authors self-publishing their work. Taking advantage of the right platforms can come in a variety of forms, but mainly, you’ll want to focus on getting interviews and features on podcasts, blogs, YouTube channels, and magazines.
Many readers look to their favorite podcasts, YouTube channels, and magazines to find new authors and books. These individuals can be particularly valuable because they are typically exploring these platforms intending to find new books to purchase. This being the case, you can imagine how valuable it can be to be featured on author-related media platforms across the internet.
The more of these that you can take advantage of the better. Typically audiences trust these platforms to provide them with trustworthy book recommendations, and getting yourself an interview or feature on one of these platforms can provide your book with credibility in the eyes of many individuals.
Though it can be difficult for some, one of the best ways to get yourself in situations like these is by putting yourself out there and networking. This could mean a variety of things, such as sending your book to popular podcasters and blog writers or even cold emailing certain individuals with connections. Though this process may not always feel easy, it can be hugely beneficial to your marketing campaign if you’re able to put yourself out there in the form of interviews and features.
One tactic that can be extremely beneficial is that of leaning into your niche. If, for instance, you’ve written a book about origami, finding podcasts, magazines, YouTube channels, or blogs about origami will put you in front of an audience that is already interested in your subject matter. In addition, being featured on these platforms will convey a sense of credibility to audience members who are engaging in this particular content.
Another key tactic that can help make utilizing these platforms effective is that of looking to get yourself out there as much as possible. Whether it’s a niche podcast or a popular YouTube channel, it’s important to take advantage of every possible platform that will allow you to market your book in this way.
In addition to driving more interest — and as a result, sales — putting yourself out there in the form of interviews and features will create an interest in you as an author rather than just your current book. As such, you could potentially gain a following that will be more likely to buy books that you write in the future. As such, this form of marketing your book can potentially help you in not only the short term — but also for the rest of your career as an author.
Make the Most Out of Your Self-Publishing Marketing Campaign
As an author, it may be difficult to switch gears and attempt to promote yourself and your work. Unfortunately, this is the name of the game when it comes to self-publishing. In order to self-publish your books in a sustainable way that allows you to make money, you’ll have to put time, money, and energy into crafting successful marketing campaigns.
Thankfully, you’re more than capable of doing so, and by using a few powerful tools, you can do so with relative ease and comfort. Rather than sending your work into the world and just crossing your fingers and waiting, you can make a difference in how your book is received. By crafting a successful self-publishing marketing campaign, you’re setting your book — and your career as an author — up for success.
Andrew Deen has been a consultant for startups in almost every industry from retail to medical devices and everything in between. He implements lean methodology and currently writing a book about scaling up business. Twitter @AndrewDeen14