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Book Marketing

Posted by Sherrie Wilkolaski on Mon, Oct 15, 2012 @ 01:46 PM

by Amy Collins

Book Marketing is the act of letting the end user, the reader, know that your book is available and where to find it. Successful books are marketed in a manner that results in a reader purchasing your book and taking it home. A well-marketed book starts with a well-written marketing statement

Starting with the Basics:

To create a truly effective marketing statement, start with the Who, What, Where, When, Why, and How.

  1. Who will actually shell out the money to buy your book? Outline their age, finances, gender, and circumstances.

  2. What makes your book worth the consumer’s dollars?

  3. Where will your readers find your book?

  4. When will your readers need your book? At what point in their lives will they need your book?

  5. Why is your book more appealing than others in the same category are? (Be brutally honest here. Do you compete on price? Is your information more up to date?)

    How will your potential readers find out about your book?

Your Positioning Statement

Get all this down on paper and look at it. You are now prepared to write your book’s positioning statement. When you are ready to present your book to the world (readers, bookstores, publicists, buyers, etc.), the most important tool in your arsenal will be the positioning statement. This statement is 100 words that outline for a potential buyer the reasons why your book will be of interest to their clients.

These 100 words should not outline what your book is about. This statement exists to talk about the potential market for your book and how you, as the publisher, plan to reach that market.

For example, if you have identified your core readership as business executives looking for a new job, your positioning statement could look something like this:

Shut Up and Hire Me is a step-by-step program designed for the busy business executive. Each chapter was written and designed to be read in less than ten minutes. Unlike other career guides on the shelf today, Shut Up and Hire Me draws from the wisdom and experience of CEOs from more than thirty Fortune 500 companies. Interviews, combined with proven techniques, are provided to help executives find and land their next position. Author Bill Billiam has hired top New York PR firm, Blown Out of Proportion, and is the author of such previous works as: Better Dead than Unemployed and More Money for Less Work.

Try it and see what you can come up with!


Amy Collins MacGregor started her career in the book industry as the book buyer for Village Green Books in Upstate, New York. In 1996, she “hopped the desk” and thoroughly enjoyed working as a National Account Rep for Prima Publishing.  In 2001, Amy was named Director of Sales at Adams Media in Boston and quickly rose to the Special Sales Director for parent company, F+W Media.  Over the years, Amy has sold to Borders, Barnes and Noble, Target, Costco, Wal-mart, and all the major chains as well as help launch several private label publishing programs for chains such as PetSmart and CVS. In February 2006, Amy started The Cadence Group and now runs the fastest-growing book distribution company in North America, New Shelves Distribution, where she offers her sales experience to small publishers and self-published authors.

Image courtesy of Miguel Saavedra.

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