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If you don't know much about marketing, don't worry. We all start with nothing.
I'm Joanna Penn, and back in 2008, I had no book sales, no audience, no website, no social media, no podcast, no email list. No nothing.
Now I'm a New York Times and USA Today best-selling author of thrillers and non-fiction. My books have sold over 500,000 copies in 83 countries, and I'm an award-winning creative entrepreneur and international speaker, making a multi-six-figure income with my writing.
Learning how to market my books and my personal brand changed my life. Yes, you need to write an awesome book, but you also need to know how to get it in front of the right readers.
How to Market a Book is for authors who want to sell more books, but it's also for those writers who want to think like an entrepreneur and build a long-term income. It's for traditionally published authors who want to take control of their future, and for self-published authors who want to jump-start a career.
There are short-term tactics for those who want to boost immediate sales, but the focus of the book is more about instilling values and marketing principles that will help your long-term career as a writer.
It's also about going beyond just the book, because these methods can take you from being an author into making money from other products, professional speaking, and creating opportunities that you can't even imagine yet.
Customer ReviewsMost Helpful
By Joel on 11-09-17
I've read it twice...
No kidding. I wouldn't be surprised if I end up doing a third pass either. Simply put, if you want to learn the difference between selling no books because yours is lost and Amazon, and selling lots and building a killer platform, then read this book! (Two or more times!)
1 of 1 people found this review helpful
By Mellissa Green on 09-21-17
What did you love best about How to Market a Book: Third Edition?
The structure was awesome!
What did you like best about this story?
The book was nicely action-oriented.
What does Caroline Holroyd bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?
Her narration made the book more exciting!
Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?
Yes, though I plan to go through it again, and take action on many of the steps if possible.
Any additional comments?
The book was a good length. It was like a complete course.
1 of 1 people found this review helpful
Customer ReviewsMost Helpful
By TJ on 07-07-18
Aladdins cave of gold in marketing tips
I suspect many authors are overwhelmed by the multiple channels available to market their book. I certainly am. Do we write blogs, run Facebook or Bookbub ads, speak at events, or pay for twitter promotions among many options? It’s so hard to choose, particularly when you are new to writing and marketing. Of key importance is to think about where your ideal reader hangs out and to develop targeted marketing tactics.
Joanna addresses the fundamentals of successful marketing in this book – starting first with what’s our ‘Why’ for writing a book. She highlights the value of building our personal brand and reassures us that the journey to get recognised is a marathon and not a sprint. While it will take a long time, it will happen if you invest the time and track our learning. And the time to start is now. Even if you have done nothing apart from finishing your book.
I’m a relatively new author and have been experimenting with marketing tactics including blogs on LinkedIn and Medium, treasure hunt campaigns, emails to librarians, Amazon ads, twitter blasts and entry into competitions. The results have been disappointing and I know I need to post valuable content on ‘real estate’ I own, i.e. on my own website and capture the learning and ROI of each campaign if I am to understand what is working and what isn’t. While I may be disappointed by a short term spike in sales only it is important to continue to build my personal brand as this will support longer term sales success.
Joanna has introduced me to the idea of making short videos and posting them on a regular basis on YouTube. They could be about your research process or a book trailer to support a book launch. She provides links to people who are doing this very effectively.
There is great advice on using audio books as a product and how you can run promotions, competitions and giveaways with organisations like ACX who give out 25 free codes. Personal declaration here – I was the grateful recipient of one of these for this book. Joanna reveals that audio books are one of the fastest growing market segments.
My top personal takeaways from the book include; the need to build my personal platform and start engaging a ‘street team’; recognising that while you may not make as many sales as you would like from a campaign, you are planting seeds and building awareness, not worrying about where I am now and where to start. I’m going to try crowdfunding an animated version one of my children’s books that I wrote for my nephew who is on the autism spectrum. I’m also going to think creatively about merchandising products to support my books.
Joanna is dedicated to service and a generosity to the community she serves. She has an 80/20 rule which reflects serving and posting content valuable to other authors 80% of time with 20% on promotion related to her products. This sense of abundance has been key to her success and a reason why she has so many super fans of which I am one.
Joanna’s knowledge is available in eBooks, paperbacks and audible files. If you absorb her content though audio files, as I often do, ensure you have a pen and paper (or notebook) handy as she provides many valuable tips and references. (I have learnt not to listen late at night in bed as I have to keep turning on the light to jot down a new idea or reference).
If you want to learn more about successfully marketing your book then this one is an easy buy decision.
By Tracy Stanley, Author - Engagement Whisperer: A quieter and more collaborative approach to inspiring your team
By Simon Huggins on 07-26-17
Excellent summary of how to market your book
There's a huge amount of information to take in with this audiobook, and it's an even mix of practical checklists and conversational advice, which helps to digest it better.
Joanna clearly knows her stuff, and she evidences this throughout.
The narrator is a great stand-in for the author, as her tone and style is very similar to the author's conversational and friendly style, which helps.
However, be warned. There is no way you are going to remember everything here in audiobook format. Take it in chunks, as if you are like me, you may get overwhelmed with the sheer volume of information.
My advice is to use the audiobook version to get an overview whilst on the move, but when it comes to enacting the advice, buy the book where I think the checklist style advise will come into its own.