Self publishing has slowly been gaining on traditional publishing for years now and its momentum is only going to gain strength in 2014. It’s good because there are more avenues than ever through which you can publish your work. It also means that the competition is only going to get stiffer over the coming months. So how do you set yourself apart? How do you build your audience and the demand for what you’ve written?
If you’re like most independent authors, you’re probably going to turn to social media. You already know about Twitter and Facebook, of course, but those aren’t the only social networking and media methods that you can use to your advantage.
Here are some other tools and avenues through which you can up your self-promotion game.
1) Take Advantage of the Amazon Author and Kindle Programs
Amazon wants your book to succeed as much as you do. That’s why the Amazon Author and Amazon Kindle Publishing programs exist. Of course, enrolling in these programs won’t be enough to ensure book sales. This great article from SFWA is filled with tips for improving your Amazon author profile.
2) Goodreads is Popular for a Reason
You already know what Goodreads is, right? In addition to finding out what books your friends are reading, authors use Goodreads all the time as a method of self promotion from finding book clubs who might want to read their books to offering copies of the book up for free in exchange for a review. Here are some of the things you can do to improve your Goodreads strategy.
3) Making Promotion Easier On Yourself
In addition to taking advantage of bigger programs like those offered by Amazon and Goodreads, there are smaller and lesser known tools that you can use to improve your audience building and book promotions:
– Hootsuite is a great social media account manager. You can manage multiple accounts all at the same time, schedule posts ahead of time and track the success of your postings.
– Viral Lock allows you to directly reward people for sharing your content. It uses a code to encrypt (lock) premium content until the person who wants to see it shares your page via one of their social media accounts. It’s a great way to bribe people to mention you.
– Help a Reporter Out is an anonymous site through which reporters can post requests for information or interviews. You can respond to those requests if you think you’re a good fit for what they need and then they contact you. Lots of authors use it to beef up their free publicity game.
A Note About Security
As your success and your audience grow, your risk of hacking and trolling increases. It is important that you take steps to protect yourself as you work to promote your work online. Here are some of the ways that you can do that:
· Turn on two step verification on all of your social media accounts. This requires the platform to “double check” with you whenever your account is accessed from a new IP address or machine. It’s a great way to thwart someone even if they do manage to figure out your passwords.
· Use security software to keep your machines safe from hackers and protect your information. Virtually no one is immune to online intrusions, including authors.
Have you found a really great app or program for self promotion? Tell us about it in the comments!