Writer’s Corner: 5 Tips For Pre-Publication Book Promotion

Writer’s Corner: 5 Tips For Pre-Publication Book Promotion

You might think a successful book launch starts the day you sign your publishing contract. Actually, it starts much earlier—the day you declare yourself an author. But for this piece, let’s explore some of the promotion steps you can take once you’ve signed a contract with the publisher and you’re ramping up for a book launch.

First serial rights are one of the items you, or your literary agent, negotiated on the contract generating additional income from the book. Some of these may be yours—meaning, you own the rights—and therefore you’ll possibly draw income from these endeavors. Otherwise, any draw from rights may go directly to the publisher. But you still benefit. Publicity in advance, during, and after a book launch drives sales. And sales is what you’re after.

Some of the following pre-publication promotional steps include subsidiary rights but not all. The list of items is endless. So, talk with your publisher and work with your literary agent, publicity expert, or assistant and develop a strategic promotion plan to build interest, anticipation, and pre-publication sales.

Here are a few ideas for pre-pub promotion:

  • Content Promos. Magazines, Newspapers, Blogs, etc. You’re a writer so this falls right in your wheelhouse. Writing articles or guest posts about why you wrote your book or what made you become an author is a great way to get started. You may also decide (along with your publisher) to allow these venues to publish excerpts from your book.
  • Press Releases. Usually this is created by your publisher, but not always. You’ll need to ask for a copy so you can also do your due diligence. Make sure you talk with your publisher, agent, and publicist and strategize who will be sending this out and to whom so there’s no crisscrossing confusion.
  • Interviews. An Author Q&A, television, radio, or podcasts are readily available for new and upcoming authors. This takes time to find them, but there are literally thousands of venues on which to schedule an interview. Some have a waiting list, so be patient. Yet another reason to do this in advance.
  • Book Signings. Hold on, your book isn’t out yet so why would this be a pre-publication step? Trust me it is. When I worked for a publisher one of my projects was to schedule book signings and book tours. Often the waiting list for these are lengthy so you want to plan way in advance. Of course, some hosts won’t schedule you until your book is out, and that’s fine, but developing a list of places to target in advance in smart. (It doesn’t hurt to try and book pre-pub either).
  • Book Teasers. I haven’t seen many of these outside the Book Teaser section on Books Uplift. But golly gee, free publicity? Why not take advantage of sharing a little about your upcoming book so the Books Uplift Community is invited to follow you and earmark your book release date.

These are just a few—emphasis on “few”—pre-publication promotional places for you to start driving interest in you and your work. Two points of caution: First, be sure that all your promotional endeavors include a link back to your author’s website; second, coordinate all with your team—publisher, literary agent, and publicist—not just as a courtesy and to avoid duplicated efforts, but because your publishing contract depends on you adhering to expressed rights and guidelines.

Most importantly, no matter how you publicize, it’s incumbent on you as the steward of your author’s brand to be professional and respectful of all involved in seeing your book through to the bestseller’s list

I hope this article provided you with a few applicable ideas. I would be honored if you shared this on social media. And speaking of sharing, please share your own ideas and experiences below. Together, we can build an uplifting community that focuses on supporting each other’s happiness, wellbeing, creativity, and success.

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