The same day I finished my first novel, I began writing out a detailed business plan for marketing. Hours and hours of research led me down the same paths many times over. Most of them were ads that led me to a book about marketing that I could purchase for the small price of **$99.99** or some other insidious amount. The articles and blogs I found all pretty much said the same things, so I decided to dig deep into my brainpit and find something DIFFERENT.
I came up with some ideas and did some homework. Here are a few of the strategies I came up with. (As of yet, I'm not certain of the results...)
1. The first thing I did was buy a magnet. A WHAT? Haha. Yes, a magnet. A car door magnet. Everywhere I look around town, people have these things advertising business. Selling a book is a business, so why not? I found a very affordable plan at www.vistaprint.com. I tested it out, ordered a small one for $8. I'm very pleased with the product, and went on to order larger ones with more info on where to find it.
Also, if you decide to buy one with them, google "Vistaprint discount codes". I found a 25% off code and saved even more before checkout. I haven't received the larger ones yet, but this was what the little one looked like:
Don't go making fun of my grandma-mobile =) Also, I had to put it in a weird place because my car is made of plastic... Anyway, I've had people stop me in Wal~Mart parking lots to ask about it, so it's definitely something I would suggest.
I'm also planning in the future to hit up some local owner/operator truck drivers to see what they might charge me to stick one on a truck that travels nationwide.
2. Consignment sales. I'm not sure if that's what other stores call them, but my local Hastings bookstore offers these sales. You take in however many books you'd like to sell there, fill out a paper, tell them how much profit you want to make, they mark them up 30% and put them on their shelves. It's a pretty sweet deal. They ask you to come in once a month to check sales, restock, and get paid. You can pull them out of the store any time you'd like, so it's a no risk situation for all. I started small with 10 books, and I'm waiting on more this very moment because they sold out. If you have a Hastings Entertainment store around, I wouldn't hesitate to put it to good use. I'm not certain yet if other bookstores offer something similar, but I will be checking around.
3. Facebook Ads- Okay, I'll have to admit this wasn't my idea... Scott Niven offered this advice on his blog over HERE. I set up an ad for $1.50 per day and have gained followers to my Facebook page. I'm not sure how this translates into sales, since I can't see who buys the book, but the more eyes on it the better.
4. The Book Trailer. Again, not sure if it's boosted sales any, but I've had views from 80 different sources, 25 of which were linked at the end of another video on YouTube. This has allowed me to expand my reach to people who would have probably never even heard of it. And of course, it didn't cost a penny =D
Other than the typical sales schemes of a book, these are some great ways to help you promote. If you have any other methods that aren't blogged about on a daily basis, feel free to comment below and share your knowledge.