To untangle the web of eBook self-publishing tools, it is best to break the process down into three steps: marketing, advertising, and promoting. These are all different and should be approached differently, but they are all needed at some point or another to get the word out about your new eBook. Knowing what each one is and how it can work for you will help you when you try to draw in buyers and readers.
Build some buzz around your eBook before it comes out by doing pre-marketing work. Give people some inkling of what it’s about by posting the blurb on social media and other websites. Let them salivate over it and want more. Get active on discussion boards and make a name for yourself on blogs and other social media, like Twitter and Facebook. You can easily build a following on social media because, if you follow people, they will probably follow you. One post on any social media site can expose you to hundreds of people at one time. Create expectations about your eBook’s release, and share them with the people following you. Publish an excerpt on social media and places like Siminars.com, a site that allows you to publish parts of your eBook for free. You can also do things like offer a raffle for those who pre-order the eBook or establish a newsletter for those interested in your writing. Stimulate anticipation and leave them wanting more; that’s what marketing is about.
You (may) have to spend money to make money. Aside from free publicity, such as appearing in an interview for your local paper, there is plenty of ad space on websites about independent publishers like you. Pay an indie book reviewing service to write a review for your eBook. Then you will have the imprimatur of that authoritative source to link with your eBook. Your eBook becomes more interesting and credible when you have sources that have reviewed it. Advertise your book on indie book forums, purchase ad space form local periodicals, or even create basic flyers with your information on it. You should also have a good cover for your eBook. When people are scrolling through a page, they should be drawn to your book’s cover art before your title or content. Give them an interesting image to draw their attention. Advertising is about getting people interested in your product, but you have to keep them interested through promotions.
Use promotions, like giveaways or discount codes, to entice readers who can help spread the word through social media like Goodreads.com. Announce any special promotions on your blog, such as WordPress.com. Incentivize the first fifty buyers of your eBook by offering a free download of your next eBook in exchange for a positive review. Just remember that, in the United States, they must mention it’s a paid review. Send your first chapter to indie publishing sites and retweet all tweets that mention your book. Ask your friends to do the same.
When it comes to getting the word out about your eBook, marketing, advertising, and promoting are necessary. View these tasks as a step-by-step process that you must go through to make yourself successful. Effectively and systematically avail yourself of these self-publishing tools and use each one to your advantage. Once you know the differences in each, you can deploy them effectively. Be sure to do them in proper order. You must first market before you advertise and advertise before you promote to get the best feedback.