LAUNCHING YOUR SELF-PUBLISHED BOOK
- Pick a launch date (could be date available, could be tied to significant event)
- Give away a free chapter
- Host a Facebook launch party
- Do a blog book tour
- Plan your on-sale date
A lot of blood, sweat and tears go into writing a book, but the truly vulnerable moment is when you’re ready to release it to the world. Will anyone read it? Will they like it? Will anyone even know the book exists? The truth is, a successful book launch involves some planning, some promotion and some creativity. Here are five quick ideas on how to have the best possible launch of your book.
PICK YOUR LAUNCH DATE
On one hand this seems easy—the launch date is whenever the book is available to ship or download, right? It definitely can be, but there might be a more strategic time to launch your book. For instance, if you are primarily hoping to get your book to your church community, announcing the Sunday right before or after New Year’s might not be peak attendance time. Conversely, there might be events that naturally lead to a great launch! If you’re writing a book about the resurrection, for instance, launching the book a few weeks before Easter (and planning a sermon series that coincides) could be a great launch pad. The point is, be strategic.
GIVE AWAY A FREE CHAPTER AHEAD OF TIME
Use social media to bump up anticipation for your book. Give away a chapter you’re particularly proud of for free. This is very easy to do: Just export your document as a PDF and upload it on a website, your blog or even offer to email it to people in exchange for them joining your mailing list (that you can use to announce when the book goes live).
Doing this will prime the pump for when you launch the book online. Rather than it being a random event that happens on their Facebook feed, people who like the chapter will be anticipating the release.
HOST A LAUNCH PARTY
This could be an actual party—in a room with food—but more common and much cheaper is an online launch party. Many people use Facebook for this. You can create an event, invite people to join you and when the time hits, people are reminded to visit the launch page you’ve created.
From there you can answer questions, post a video of you describing the book and give away free copies (or any other freebies you can imagine).
PLAN A BLOG TOUR
Contact anyone and everyone you know who has a blog, website or any other avenue of online influence that might match with your book’s content. Ask if you could write a guest article for them that goes live the first week your book is published (with a link to buy it at the end, of course).
The more online presence you can get early on, the higher your initial sales, and the more likely your book will gain traction outside your immediate area of influence.
PLAN YOUR “ON SALE” DATE
Some online sites—such as Amazon—offer to do a promotional window when you can sell your book at a discount (even free if you want). Plan for this to happen after the initial run of sales has happened, around two to four months after you’ve launched the book, then announce the book has gone on sale for a limited time. Encourage people who have read the book to share this deal with their friends.
These are just a few ideas on how to have a successful book launch. It’s worth mentioning that there are many products out there—such as Equip—that offer to help you with all of this. So, if you’re feeling overwhelmed by all of the above, check out more of what Equip does and see if it’s right for you. Download Equip’s Free Self-Publishing Guide to get started.