Do you know how to create impressions for your book? Traditional publishing houses use multiple impressions to create buzz about the books they publish. You, too, can create impressions that will generate interest in your book and increase sales. The goal is to get as much attention as possible in a variety of ways, and here are a few tips how.
1. Social Media
Whether it's Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, Google+, Pinterest, or YouTube, practically everyone is engaged in social media. It's where people hang out and a great place to build interest in your book. With an active Facebook following, organic posts and videos can go a long way just by having your fans like and share them to increase their visibility, and they're free. Paid Facebook ads are a relatively cheap way to increase the reach of your message. They allow you to target your ads toward "people who follow you" or "people interested in x, y, or z" which will help you reach your desired audience for less than it would cost for a larger, blanket ad.
2. Industry Recognition
Create buzz and increase your book's exposure by having the industry publicly recognize your book's value via book reviews, blurbs, awards, and the news. Put your book in the hands of readers and news outlets who write reviews. Send review copies to other authors and industry professionals who are willing to write a blurb for you, and submit your manuscript to award competitions. This kind of industry recognition helps you reach a wider audience and increase sales.
3. Book Clubs
If you aren't already in a book club, start one. Start with a book people are already talking about, then suggest yours. You can also offer to participate in book clubs who are reading your book. Start with local groups you know and make yourself available via Skype for Q&A sessions. For example, if you were a trial attorney you could attend local book meetings and schedule lectures at law firms to gain attention for your book.
4. Author Events and Guerilla/Grassroots Marketing
Work with your local bookstores and other shops to stage author events, including readings, signings, and meet-and-greets. Place posters around your local community, participate in online giveaways, and collaborate with local businesses. If you've written a book about fashion, ask local clothing stores if they'd throw a postcard for your book in everyone's bag when they make a sale. Have you written a cookbook? Try collaborating with local kitchen stores, cooking classes, and even restaurants that serve food similar to the food in your book. Pitch the local angle, and make sure whatever you do relates to your book.
By this point, you have a great author website and may want to consider writing a blog. With a blog, you can write entries that include tantalizing details about your book, follow your publishing journey, and are of interest to your potential audience. If you've written a romance, blog about relationships and/or dating. Reach out to other bloggers and plan a guest-blogging tour. Guest blogging on blogs that have your ideal audience will create impressions of your book in places you might not otherwise reach.
You can also create impressions of your book by getting publicity from outlets outside the publishing arena. An example of this is being cited as an expert on a particular subject matter. Use your education, work expertise, and relevant experience to make public statements about current events. Include, author of X in you bio and sales of your book will follow your news coverage.
This can be expensive, so only do this with an outlet you feel will give you the most bang for your buck. Consider venues that give you the largest reach, to the most targeted audience of people who would actually be interested in your book, for the best price. See if you can work partnership opportunities into the bargain so that you can get a discount, etc. If creative is included in the ad price, see if you can hire a designer for your ad separately that will save you some money overall.
8. Word of Mouth
Of all the books there are to choose from in the world, are you more likely to pick one on your own—or pick the one your best friend with the same interests as you said they loved and suggested you would too? Providing galleys/advanced review copies and participating in giveaways/contests will help you get the right people talking about your book. Don't forget to talk about your book yourself and enlist the help of family, friends, and particularly enthusiastic readers. There is no substitute for the personal touch and word-of-mouth recommendations really do sell books.