Diary of a Book Marketing Plan – Setup

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My second book is releasing soon. As I researched and promoted my first book, I wrote a blog post giving 32 marketing ideas. Now, with more experience as to what worked and didn’t work for me, I’ll share my marketing experience for my second book as it unfolds. I hope you’ll join me for the next several weeks.

For Book 1, Calculated Risk, I performed all 32 of my suggestions. For some, I could’ve done more and for others I should’ve done less. I still recommend reading the 32 marketing ideas, because many were valuable.

Benefits Gained from Promoting Book 1

• Through purchasing Facebook ads, I better defined my audience from the ages and sexes of the people who clicked on my ads. Knowing my audience will help for Book 2 ads.

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• I accomplished much promotion setup work. For example, I have a website; I’ve joined social networks such as Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest; and I’ve set up my Amazon, Facebook, and Goodreads author pages. For Book 2, I will only need to update information at these places.

• I learned that romances don’t sell well at fairs and festivals, unless they are book fairs attended by readers. See my post on fairs and festivals.

• At bookstore signings and fairs, I learned it’s important not to sit behind a table, but to stand, pass out bookmarks, and engage people about what they like and need, and less about my books. For example, a woman interested in writing gave me her email address, and I sent her information on a local writers’ group. She’s on my list to email about Book 2.

• I discovered which promotion tasks were worthwhile, even if some were uncomfortable for this introvert.

Book 2 Tasks I’ve Done So Far

•I sent out PDF’s of the book to 6 possible endorsers and obtained 2 authors able to read the book and write endorsements. Many authors want to help, but they’re up against deadlines.

• I grabbed a fifteen-minute appointment with the CEO of a publishing company at a writer’s conference. Believing online promoting is more successful than traditional marketing efforts, he recommended I spend my time and money on online ads and getting Amazon reviews quickly.

• According to the CEO’s recommendations, I researched several online promotion options. My husband and I met and decided which I would invest money and time in. I’ll mention them in upcoming posts.

• I setup my marketing Excel spreadsheet to enter promotion tasks, deadlines, requirements, and progress.

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• For my local book launch party (it’s not all about online presence): I’ve enlisted helpers, set up a meeting with them, and reserved the party place.

• I signed up to write a guest post, do an interview, or be spotlighted on 6 blogs. I’ve drafted two.

• Drafted email content to recruit potential book influencers. I’ve listed 28 people.

• I received my book cover recently. This opens up my ability to start working on several promotion projects.

As I record my efforts and progress for Book 2, Gift of the Magpie, in upcoming posts, I’ll include tips and hope you’ll follow along and share your tips and thoughts too.

Diary of a book marketing experience: promotion activities and progress. Click to tweet.

What are the promotion activities you enjoy and which do you dread? Why?

7 Tips to Mellow You in Your Daunting Book Marketing Plan

“My theory is that every little bit has the potential to help. We just have to learn where to focus our limited time and energy, because obviously we can’t do it all.” —Jody Hedlund

mage courtesy of debspoons at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Image courtesy of debspoons at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

I’m up against developing and executing my marketing plan for my debut novel. I awake clenching my teeth.

Whether you’re writing a book or have received a contract, is marketing your book a heavy cloud hovering over your head?

7 Tips to Help Calm You

Tip 1. For over a year, I’ve saved emails from writers’ email loops and my subscriptions to book-promotion blogs. These emails contain others’ experiences or links to posts, articles, and websites I might use in promoting my novel.

Image courtesy of mapichai at FreeDigitalPhotos.net
Image courtesy of mapichai at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

I’ve also collected workshop handouts and purchased how-to e-books.

Examples: Emails that recommend website designers, give newsletter writing tips, or provide links to order bookmarks. An e-book showing how to use Twitter in a marketing plan.

Ahh. Most of my research is already at my fingertips.

Tip 2. About six months from my book’s release date, I scheduled weekly readings from my saved items in Tip 1. Now promotion ideas, how-tos, and processes are fast becoming familiar.

Ahh. I’ve gained confidence in what I need to do.


  • Learning steps, details, and processes lessens our marketing-plan stress. click to tweet
Image courtesy of iosphere at FreeDigitalPhotos.net
Image courtesy of iosphere at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Tip 3. From my readings in Tip 2, I listed all the projects I could do to promote my novel.

Ahh. I got them all out there so none lurk to worry me later.

Tip 4. I assigned the tasks from Tip 3 to the months I’ll need to work on them. Wow. About 375 tasks over six months!

Family, health, and excellence of projects are more important than doing all the tasks. So, I determined the projects that were MUSTS.

Examples: Obtaining a website. Getting book endorsements. Scheduling interviews on blogs that readers frequent.

From the information I gathered in Tip 1, I tagged additional projects experts said were worth the effort. Then, I noted which months were overloaded. From these two factors, I chose the projects I’d pursue.

Image courtesy of jesadaphorn at FreeDigitalPhotos.net
Image courtesy of jesadaphorn at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Examples: Focus mainly on Twitter. Join a meet-the-authors Facebook party. Hold a local launch party.

I may implement the rejected projects on my next book’s marketing plan.

Examples: A blog tour. Writing articles for publications. A Facebook launch party.

Ahh. I’ve whittled down the projects I’m going to work on.



  • Excellence doesn’t mean you have to do everything to promote your book. click to tweet

Tip 5. Now, I’m scheduling needed people for my projects. I’m doing this early so this task doesn’t loom over me.

Examples: Hosts and helpers for the local book launch party. An artist to “beautify” my give-away baskets containing novel-related goodies. Local bookstore owner to schedule events.

Ahh. I feel like I have a team behind me. 

by colossus
by colossus

Tip 6. I always start a week with a written list of tasks I’ll complete each day. I make sure tasks are “bites” of the project, not projects in themselves.

I’m mindful not to sabotage my progress by starting unscheduled tasks because they’re “good” or fun to do.

Ahh. I can relax. Time is scheduled for each task.


  • Often we’re overwhelmed because we work on unscheduled, “good” tasks. click to tweet

Tip 7. For me, praying God’s direction on everything is a must.

Ahh. I’m in His will.

How do you add serenity to your marketing plan?