Every author knows writing a book is a process that requires a lot of hard work, time and dedication. Sometimes, writing a book can take years, so it’s understandable why many authors feel the need to rush the publication process once they have a finished manuscript. However, as tempting as it might be to get your finished book out to the world, authors aren’t doing themselves any favors by impulse publishing.
Platforms like Kindle Direct Publishing and CreateSpace make it very easy to “publish” your book. By allowing authors to essentially publish books instantly, these platforms promote an accelerated publishing process, which can be harmful not only to the overall market, but individual authors as well.
Branding and pre-publication marketing are two things that are often overlooked by self-publishing authors, especially if they’re in a rush to publish. However, these are two very important steps to selling books, which is the ultimate goal for most authors who are publishing their book.
To help prevent impulse publishing, here are some essential steps that can prepare authors to not just publish, but publish successfully.
Know your audience. Authors who speed through the publishing process don’t take the time to think about basic information, such as the audience for their book. Once your book is available for sale, who will buy it and how will you market to them? These are questions that need to be answered well before you publish.
Define your brand as an author. Whether they’d like to recognize this fact or not, authors must build a brand for themselves. With the millions of books in the market, it’s difficult for authors to solely build a brand around their book. They also have to brand and sell themselves as the author. Ultimately, the author is the differentiating factor that will connect with readers and sell books.
Build Momentum. There were over 450,000 books self-published in 2013, so how will yours stand out? The book market is crowded, so simply publishing your book and hoping for the best won’t produce many sales. Marketing and promotion should begin before the release of a book, which is why establishing an audience and branding is so important. Having a strategic marketing plan and promotional tactics will build excitement and momentum for a book and help to distinguish it in the market.
Collect pre-orders. Collecting pre-orders is one of the most tangible ways to market your book before publication. Through a pre-order platform or their own website, authors can drive readers to learn more about and purchase their book.
Raising funds. Reward-based crowdfunding presents an opportunity for authors to collect pre-orders while raising funds for publishing their book. By raising funds in advance of publication, authors are able to mitigate the financial burden and risk of self-publishing. Often times, the funds raised also allow an author to produce a higher quality book, a key differentiator in the book market.
These few key steps can help to make an author into an authorpreneur, which can be the difference between just publishing you book and selling your book. As tempting as it might be to publish as quickly as possible, publishing deserves the same hard work, time and dedication as writing, so be sure to give your book everything it deserves.