The time to think about how to promote your book is while you are writing it. I do this. I teach this. So I really should have thought of this sooner.
I’m working on a couple of books at one time, trying to finish up a series, going back to a book I had almost finished and then left for (ahem) a year, plus a piece of fiction that needs some serious time and attention. And of course, client work, marketing my business, and promoting my books.
Yes, time blocking. Of course. But I’m always looking for more efficient ways to use those time blocks and a quick project (two days) helped me see where I could improve a system. So, my first thought is to share it with you.
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I was laying out the interior of my book, More Leads Less Work for the print format. That involves taking the book, chapter by chapter (and sometimes section by section, depending on images and graphics) and inserting the chunks into a print template. (If you have the time and a spare $300 – $400, pay someone to do this for you. It’s worth every penny. I was in a time crunch.) I also took the opportunity to re-read the material and fix some typos. (There are always typos.) Because I need to create some promos for this book (and the others), as I read and formatted the material, I pulled out points and quotes that I could use to market the book.
Which is, of course, when… [Trumpet Blare]
Light Dawned on Marblehead
Do this while writing your book! (Duh.) Just open a second document, name the file, and copy and paste your gems over there. When it comes time to promote your book, you’ll have promo ideas ready to go.
And why did it take me so long (and dozens of books) to think of this? It’s so basic.
Look for complete thoughts: little known facts, intriguing questions, mythbusters, helpful tips and hacks. Each one can be a social media post, especially when paired with an image. Turn your subheadings into questions (if they aren’t already). Give a short answer and add a “Learn More” link to your book (or to a blog post and then your book). Create a series of tips or create a post with several tips and tell people your book has x many more tips for them.
In some situations, I like to give the what and why but not the how. For instance, I can tell people what a lead magnet is and why they need one, but not how to develop one. Or I can tell one step of a process that is complete in and of itself, but not the whole shebang. For example, I can show you one step of my 8 Step Marketing Plan, like how to define your target market but not how to develop a complete plan. Social media posts are of course, too short to lay out an entire process, but the idea is to give a complete thought. You don’t want to leave people hanging, but you do want to tease or entice them to want to know more.
Gee, Barb, I wish you had told me this BEFORE I wrote my book. I feel you.
For the book(s) you’ve already written:
Go back through your books and look for:
- Chapter Takeaways or Action Steps
- Graphics that express a complete thought or process
- Case Studies that you can use as teasers
If you’re worried about giving away “all your secrets,” don’t be. The person who is going to scroll through your every post just to glean your freebie tips is not your buyer. He’s not anyone’s buyer. In truth, when you think about how many people see any one post of yours, no matter how many followers you have, you realize this is a non-issue. People are time conscious. Part of the reason why they buy books is to have all the information presented to them in a nice package—no hunting all over the Internet for information, determining if the information is true and correct, and then putting it all in a logical order. That’s part of the value your book brings. People are smart enough to realize that they are saving time and headaches.
This is a super simple hack to help you promote your books. You can also use this same technique to promote your blog posts, articles, and podcasts. It only takes a few seconds to copy and paste those gems that will attract your readers. Collect the actual copy that you will use to promote your book while you are writing and you’ll be ready to hit the ground running when it is time to market your book.