So you’re an author – an author who just wrote an awesome book. But unfortunately, even though you’ve spent countless hours writing, re-writing and editing your masterpiece, your work isn’t nearly done yet. Now you’ve got to get people to read your book.
Most authors aren’t too thrilled at the prospect of book marketing. It can be very tedious work indeed. But luckily, there is one great tool that can help you gain fans, create excitement about your book, and ultimately, increase your readership. Just harness the power of giveaways and contests! Check out some tips for creating a giveaway or contest that will take some of the painful work out of the book promoting process:
Give Away Something Other Than Your Book
While it may be tempting to give away a copy of your book when you’re trying to promote it, that may not be the most effective option. Firstly, consider that a copy of a book that people know nothing about might not motivate potential entrants to enter your giveaway. But if you give away something that most people are likely to enjoy without question, like an Amazon gift card for example, you may attract book-lovers you might not have otherwise reached.
Here’s a great example of what I’m talking about. Laura Allen Nonemaker recently published a children’s book called “Catie’s Secret.” In order to promote the book, she decided to go with a Kindle Fire “Kid Pack Giveaway.” As of halfway through the giveaway, 500 entrants have already entered to win. And since Liking the author on Facebook was a required entry method, she has picked up 500 new Facbeook friends as a result of the giveaway so far.
The “Catie’s Secret” giveaway is also an excellent example of a giveaway that uses a theme to its full extent. Creating a theme around the location, genre, etc. of the book can be very effective. “Catie’s Secret” is a children’s book, so making the giveaway centered around kids and including kid-friendly prizes is a smart way to go.
You can also get people excited about your book by using the entry form to your advantage. With PromoSimple, you can fully customize your entry forms so that the color and fonts compliment the colors and fonts on your book cover. You can even insert your book cover’s image directly into the entry form. After all, your cover is meant to entice people to read your book. Why not use your giveaway entry form for the same purpose?
Consider Giving a Free Copy of Your Ebook to All Entrants
The point of running a giveaway is to expose more people to your book and its content, right? Well, giving a book away to one winner isn’t likely to achieve that goal. But giving a large audience access to your ebook for free (when they enter to win something that interests them) could indeed help spread the word. And when you’re promoting a book, word of mouth is perhaps your most valuable marketing tool. People who love your book are going to go out there and recommend it to their friends, family, book club, etc. So exposing people to your book via a giveaway could in turn help you get free promotion.
We’ve touched on the fact that your greatest asset when promoting a book is word of mouth. You want to get people talking about your book. This is where social media can be invaluable.
Giveaways are an excellent (and easy) way to increase your social media presence. In exchange for an entry into your giveaway, you can:
- Have people tweet about your book
- Follow you on Twitter
- “Like” you on Facebook
- Automatically sign up to receive your newsletter/email updates
- Refer friends to your book’s website/blog
- “Pin” your book on a Pinterest board
- Follow you on Instagram
The more people you can communicate with, the better. However, we do recommend focusing on one of these outlets per giveaway, as having a focus tends to lead to more successful giveaways in general. So for example, if your main goal is to increase your Facebook presence, you can use a Facebook Like as a requirement to enter the giveaway, then use the other entry methods (Twitter, Pinterest, Email Subscription, etc.) as bonus entry methods.
Spread the Word About Your Giveaway
Once you’ve got a giveaway live, you’ll want to get the word out there however you can. You can utilize sites like Free Book Friday that feature book giveaways and put them in front of a ready-made audience. This specific site features a new set of authors every week and gives readers the chance to win autographed copies of their book.
Once you publish your giveaway using PromoSimple, you can also choose to include your giveaway in the Books and Literature section of our Giveaways Directory, and thereby increase the amount of people who stumble upon your giveaway and your awesome book.
Use the “Thank You” or “Congratulations” Messages to Give More Information
Once your giveaway has ended and your winner has been announced, your entry form can still continue to work for you. Instead of letting an expired giveaway be a dead end, use the Congratulations message area to give people information about you. You can include information on where they can purchase your book. You could even provide a coupon code in this area as an incentive for readers to go ahead and give your book a try. Whatever information you decide to include in your expired entry form, make sure you don’t miss this great opportunity for some free marketing.
Check out our recent article on the subject for some great tips:
How to Craft the Perfect Congratulations Message