Have you published a book before, either independently or through a traditional publisher, and are looking for a way to build a strong readership for your next title? Self-publishing is a great way to promote your new book, even if you plan to use a traditional publisher in the future.
In order to make money off of your art, you need to market it. Sure, you may have written a compelling novel, but no one will know about it unless you, or someone else, tell them. You probably know blogs and social media are a great way to get your manuscript in front of readers, but did you know an ebook can be used for the same purpose? ebooks are inexpensive, easy to publish, and a great way to generate a readership.
Create Supplemental Content
You can literally publish an ebook on any subject you can imagine, as long as you can write it. This is great if you're working on a print book that's soon to be published. One way to attract new readers using an ebook is to publish supplemental content.
For example, let's imagine you're working on a full-length sci-fi novel where feuding clans on a crumbling Earth battle to control a newly discovered planet. Your ebook could contain information about previous life on the planet; an account of its inhabitants before it was discovered. Or, you could write an ebook that delves into the ancestral history of the feuding clans (think Tolkien’s The Silmarillion, but not as long). By creating supplemental content for your novel, you're generating interest while also adding depth to it.
Publish Teaser Chapters
Many authors, especially those who have published successful books before, publish teaser chapters in an ebook format. If you have an established readership, start psyching them up for the release of your new novel. It's similar to when you buy a print book and there are a few sample chapters in the back, except it's in digital format and available to everyone. Many times, new readers find out about your work this way, too. There are an estimated 56.9 million people in the world who have e-readers, and a lot of them are willing to read something new if it's free.
Show off Your Style
When you publish an ebook, you're also giving readers a sampling of your "brand." All businesses, whether they are a corporate giant or an individual who is publishing their own novel, have a brand personality. You portray that personality through the images, colors, and tone of voice you use. An ebook is a great way to develop and show off your brand. Readers will get a bite-sized sample of your writing style and decide whether or not it jives with them.
Get to Know Your Audience
You can use the platform you used to publish your ebook to research its marketability. Most publishing platforms offer reports on how many copies you've sold and where you've sold them. Additionally, analytical software will tell you where your audience is coming from and how they're finding your book. This gives you invaluable insight into your potential market for your next book.
For example, if your sci-fi ebook resonates with a younger crowd than you imagined, you'll want to use marketing channels geared towards that age group. Get to know your target audience now, before your full-length novel is published, and you'll be able to market it more effectively.