Positive book reviews are great for any book, and they are particularly helpful for self-published books, where the quality from book to book can be so disparate that readers often rely upon online reviews from either 3rd party readers or established reviewers to help them make their purchasing decision.
Enter Kirkus, Foreword, and Blue Ink, three established magazines that cater to book buyers, wholesalers, libraries, and readers as the sources for unbiased book reviews. All three offer guaranteed book reviews, if you know how to get them. And as we’re about to demonstrate, getting a positive book review from a source like this can provide an author with an arsenal of promotional power.
See Exhibit One, below, the Blue Ink review of Brad Anderson’s When Is Sylvia Wallace? (Outskirts Press, 448 pages).
How many blurbs or excerpts can you extract from this review for the purposes of marketing? Let’s see…
“The pacing is relentless…”
“…a highly appealing fusion of time-travel adventure and post-apocalyptic thriller…”
“…impossible to put down.”
Can’t you see any one of those excerpts featured predominantly above the title? Or all of them on the author’s webpage and used in all promotional material (blurbs like that are particularly effective on posters). We can! What’s more, once you’ve received a review like this, with blurbs like that, you can parlay them for the remainder of your career to further enrich your author biography on future book covers, your author webpages, and your online social media author profiles — all of which helps you promote your “author platform” and all your future books, too.
Speaking of books, Brad Anderson is the author of 9 books (so far) with Outskirts Press, including the award-winning Guardians Trilogy. Brad Anderson lives and works in San Antonio, Texas. He spends most of his longer vacations hiking and camping in America’s National Parks, including Guadalupe Mountains National Park. Anderson is the author of Ribbon Falls, After the Falls, and The Janus Project, among others. Visit him at https://outskirtspress.com/guardians.
Congratulations on a great review, Brad, and on an amazing writing career. We’re with you.
To join us, and Brad, on your own writing, publishing, and award-winning adventure, visit OutskirtsPress.com today.
As more and more books are purchased online, the “experience” of flipping through the pages prior to buying has become a thing of the past. But there’s just no substitute for taking a glance inside the book when considering a book purchase.
Introducing “Barnes & Noble Read Instantly,” the new book marketing service from Outskirts Press that allows your potential customers the ability to literally “flip through” the digital pages of your book on the Barnes & Noble website.
Browsers become buyers and that is why the new Barnes & Noble Read Instantly marketing option is so powerful, offering the online equivalent to browsing a bookstore. Books that participate feature a “Read Instantly” icon superimposed over their Barnes & Noble paperback, hardback, and/or NOOK cover image, which identifies those books as Read Instantly-Capable.
Are you ready to boost your Barnes & Noble book sales. Buy now.
When you self-publish with Outskirts Press, you get so much more than the bare minimum. That’s because we want more for you than to get you published — we want you thrive!
Nothing demonstrates this commitment to assisting self-publishing authors like our Book Marketing Resource Center. This virtual bookshelf is stocked with a variety of eBooks, each addressing a specific aspect of book marketing — and this library is FREE for all authors who publish with Outskirts Press. Our flip books are designed to equip you with the know-how to launch, promote and sell your book in greater numbers than you thought possible.
Now, with the season of giving just around the corner, there’s never been a better time to check out our Book Marketing Resource Center; after all, more than half of all books sold are sold during the season. The flip book titled 9 Ways to Maximize Holiday Book Sales, provides a roadmap and timeline for promoting your book to make the most of Christmas gift-giving. It offers tips on making your book stand out with holiday shoppers, creating visual impact, and recognizing and capitalizing on selling opportunities.
The Book Marketing Resource Center from Outskirts Press is brimming with all kinds of information you can put to use now to increase sales through the holiday season and beyond. Each is downloadable and optimally organized for easy reference, so if you’re an Outskirts Press published author, you can log into your Author Publishing Center to check out as many books as you’d like, whenever you’d like. Following is just a sample of the additional FREE flip books available in the Book Marketing Resource Center:
Five Ways to Get Amazon Book Reviews
How to Create a Press Kit
How to Relaunch Your Book
Ten Rules for Hosting a Book Launch Party
Navigating the Social Media Jungle
Remember, these valuable resources are FREE! It’s just another way Outskirts Press is providing exceptional service to our cherished authors.
If you haven’t published with Outskirts Press yet, you can get started with a personal publishing consultant by clicking the link below. What are you waiting for?
A well-planned book launch party can get your book marketing efforts started off on the right foot by attracting the media and capturing new readers. Whether you are planning on hosting a book launch party at your own house or a more public place (recommended), these 10 rules are ones every author should follow:
1. Set Realistic and Measurable Goals
While a book launch party can, and should, include celebration, it is important to realize that it is also a marketing event; and its main purpose is to sell books. Therefore, think of it as a business venture as well as a party. Track every cost so you can determine the ROI (return on investment). For instance, will you use custom printed postcards or note cards featuring your book as invitations or using Evite.com? Will you host the party at your home, at a free venue like a bookstore, library, etc., or will you rent a professional party space for the event. Will you be engaging the services of an event planner, or handling all the details yourself? Event planners are an added expense, but they may possess the experience necessary to drive attendance. Be sure to set goals in terms of attendance (readers and media) and book sales (and book reviews). By determine your strategy and your budget in advance, you can analyze the results and make improvements for your next book event.
2. Pick an Appropriate Theme
Your event must appeal to your target readers to increase the chances of them attending – and of having positive word-of-mouth afterward. For instance, if you’ve written a mystery, host a “murder mystery party.” By picking a theme that relates to your book, and making that theme a clear component of the invitation, you ensure that everyone who attends is a prime candidate to buy your book at the end of the evening when you pull out your signing pen.
3. Call Upon Your Guests
Follow-up on every RSVP with a personal “thank you” that promises them a good time, a goodie bag (see below), and a great discount on a signed copy of your book. Also ask if they know anyone else who might be interested in attending the book launch event of the season (hyperbole is okay when it’s tongue-in-cheek). Make sure your guests know that they are welcome to invite/bring others to the event. If your guests start to use their social media reach to promote your event, your guest list can quickly climb, which means more book sales and more book reviews.
4. Market to the Media
Appealing to the media requires having a unique and compelling angle. Fortunately, if you did a good job connecting with your readers, you probably already have a unique and compelling angle right at your feet. Now just write a press release about it:
Local Mystery Author Launches Highly-Anticipated New Novel with a Murder Mystery Party and YOU are invited!
Not a bad headline for a press release, right? Once you have your press release written, send it to your local newspapers, television, and radio stations. The more local the media, the more interested they will be. Are you going to attract Good Morning America to your book launch? Probably not (see Rule #1). But will the local news channel feature you in a segment? Perhaps, especially if you’ve accumulated an impressively large guest list. When the segment airs, record it and post it to your social media. Share it with your attendees. They’ll all brag about being at an event that got on the news. What does that mean for you? More book sales!
5. Get Social Online
Before and after your event, be sure to use the power of social media to spread the word. Prior to the event, use your social media platform to drive awareness, answers questions, promote the event, and solicit attendees. Afterwards, share lots of pictures of the fun time had by all (along with a link to your book, of course). Even if people aren’t able to attend in person, they’ll love to see the pictures and they still may buy the book (which is, after all, the whole point!).
6. Get Social Offline
Even though many writers are introverts by nature, your book launch party is not the time to be shy. So step out of your comfort zone and embrace the gregarious published author inside you. Strike up conversations with every single person in attendance. Be generous with your time and your smile. Rather than going for the “hard sell” take lots of pictures with everyone instead, using THEIR phones as well as yours. If they have pictures on their phones, they are more likely to post those pictures on their social media platforms after the event, along with links to you and/or your book. Those online postings last a lot longer than your event ever will.
7. Get Really Social Offline
The more fun your guests have, the better your sales will be at the end of the night (since everyone will still be there) and the better your word-of-mouth will be after the event (which means the better your sales will be afterward, too). So get ready to live it up on the night of your party! Create lots of photo opportunities and encourage all your guests to take as many pictures as they can, not just of you or your book, but of the venue and/or decorations. Did your murder mystery guests don costumes (did you encourage them to by adding a costume contest to the proceedings)? Have them take posed pictures. Would your romance novel lovers mind posing next to a life-size cardboard cutout of a male hunk? Probably not. By connecting with your readers, creating a theme, and having fun, you’ll create an atmosphere that encourages reader engagement, and that will translate to more book sales at the end of the night — in other words, a perfect book launch party!
8. Joint Ventures are Your Secret Weapon
A “joint venture” is a collaboration between two people or companies with mutually-beneficial goals and results. Any good party has goodie bags, right? But rather than giving away copies of your book (you’re trying to sell copies, after all), partner with local businesses who are seeking marketing opportunities of their own. Would your romance novel lovers enjoy the local bakery’s cookies (along with a coupon) inside their goodie bag? Of course! Would your action aficionados like a coupon for a free tub of popcorn with the purchase of tickets to the latest James Bond movie playing at the local Cineplex? Absolutely! Joint Venture partnerships like this are relatively easy in this day and age of social media, and you may be surprised how many of them will advertise YOUR event on their social media platforms, too.
9. Prepare to Sell Books
When you’re in the middle of a fun party, the last thing you’ll want to be burdened with is handling book orders. But of course, taking book orders is the whole point of throwing a book launch party. What a dilemma! Fortunately, with advance planning, you can make sure this important step goes just as flawlessly as the party itself. Consider the logistics in advance in terms of cash, check, or charge. If you plan on charging sales tax, determine a discount to offer on your book that rounds the final cost to an even number (preferably in a cash-friendly denomination like $10, $15, or $20). You can promote the discount and you don’t have to worry about counting pennies for change. If you plan on taking credit cards at the event, is your smart phone hooked up with a way to do that, either with Square or PayPal, for example? It’s easy to hand-out business cards with your Amazon link printed on it, but the reality is that people attending a book launch party will expect to be able to buy a signed copy of the book that night, and you want them to! Who knows whether they’ll buy it the next day?
10. Call Upon Your Guests Again
If your attendees are old friends (or new friends who had a great time), they’ll be happy to help you spread the word about your book – but they might not know how. So tell them. Be sure your venue has a number of placards or signs with instructions for posting reviews on Amazon, sharing pictures on Instagram, or commenting on the event on Facebook. Be sure to follow-up personally with every attendee via email after the event with links to write a review, post a picture, or share a selfie.
Now that you have a mailing list, you can also notify them when your next book event takes place. And it’s sure to be even better than your first one. Throwing your first book launch party is always the most difficult. But perhaps these rules will make it easier (and more successful).
If you’re a self-publishing author who is finding it difficult to “get your book out there,” reserving 5 hours with a Personal Marketing Assistant may make all the difference. We can help you even if you didn’t publish with Outskirts Press, the #1-rated self-publishing company according to Top Consumer Reviews.
Kenwyn K. Smith is self-publishing a book with Outskirts Press, and he wants your help deciding on a book cover.
Humanity now recognizes we are partway through a transformational epoch that may be even more impactful than the Renaissance. A central feature of this reformation is discovering that all of life is predicated on abundance. Never before has the world been so wealthy. Yet mostly we still feel it is a struggle to survive, largely because our economic system is based on real or artificially created scarcities. The world order has been founded on the economics of scarcity, which is an insufficiently robust architectural edifice given present geopolitical complexities. It needs to be augmented by a financial infrastructure centered on abundance.
About the Author
Kenwyn Smith, professor of organizational behavior at the University of Pennsylvania, is a scholar-practitioner. His work has ranged from schools to prisons, businesses to health care institutions, state-run enterprises to entrepreneurship, pharmaceuticals in Belgium to HIV/AIDS communities in America, from restoring under-resourced black South African townships to supporting livelihood-development in rural India.
Please take a look at two possible covers below and then vote on the choice you recommend.
Click on the thumbnail below to enlarge each cover.
This holiday season, we continue to feature authors who have taken advantage of the 2016 Holiday Bundle and the benefits of the New York Times Holiday Edition ad. Co-op ads offer authors effective exposure through a well-known, established publication with millions of motivated book lovers!
The New York Times Holiday Edition features self-publishing author Nikki DuBose.
About the Author
Nikki DuBose is a former model, host, and commercial actress who has appeared on the covers of and in editorials for magazines such as Maxim, Glamour, Vogue and Vanity Fair. She is now a writer and public speaker. She is an advocate for mental health and uses her experiences to connect with others.
Washed Away: From Darkness to Light
Nikki DuBose recently turned her career focus towards writing, public speaking, and mental health advocacy and draws firsthand experience from a long-standing battle with childhood abuse, sexual victimization, self-harm, addictions, eating disorders and various mental health issues. Her articles appear regularly online for The Huffington Post, the National Eating Disorders Association, Eating Disorder Hope, Recovery Warriors and Clinical Addiction Recovery Institute (C.A.R.I.).
Her recovery story and advocacy work have been profiled on CBS Los Angeles, People, The Inquisitr, L.A. Weekly and Esquire, among many others. In addition to writing, speaking and advocacy, Nikki is pursuing her degree in psychology, with the goal of one day obtaining her Ph.D.
With the help of James Johanson, who is a strategy consultant and the author of The Road to Wellness: Mastering Mind, Body and Environment, Nikki brings her story to the world with her personal memoir in Washed Away: From Darkness to Light.
Washed Away: From Darkness to Light is an incredible story of one brave woman’s perseverance in the face of daunting life circumstances. Nikki DuBose details her chilling experiences with an eating disorder, childhood sexual abuse, alcoholism and drug abuse – and how she found the strength to rise above and find recovery. This powerful read will inspire those in their own recovery journeys.” —Kristina Saffran, Co-Founder and Co-Executive Director at Project HEAL
“I was truly amazed by her determination to live life. I saw a woman that had every reason to quit and remain silent, but she chose to break through every obstacle that challenged her. I am very grateful that she has taken on the challenge to not only speak about her experiences, but to fight for change in laws that will empower children and survivors to protect themselves. We all need to learn from Nikki and use our voices to create positive change. It is no longer okay for the silence to outweigh the tough discussion. Ignorance will not stop child sex predators from harming our children.” —Matthew Sandusky, Founder & Executive Director of Peaceful Hearts Foundation, Author (Undaunted: Breaking My Silence to Overcome the Trauma of Child Sexual Abuse), Speaker