"There is more treasure in books than in all the pirate's loot on Treasure Island." - Walt Disney

Monday, October 22, 2012

7 Free or Inexpensive Ways to Advertise

Unfortunately, not many of us have unlimited funding to get word out about our books. Luckily there are some free and inexpensive methods of promotion.

1)      Email signatures – Most email programs include an option for a “signature,” one or more lines of text added to each outgoing message. You can include name, contact information, links to social media, quotes, etc. However, you should keep this short, possibly three to five lines, to avoid alienating readers.
2)      Review other books in your field - By becoming a reviewer on Amazon, Barnes&Noble, Goodreads, Smashwords, etc. you can attract readers. Post reviews of other books in your genre and use your own name accompanied by “author of the book…  When people read your reviews some will click through to your book.
3)      Alumni notes  - College alumni magazines are always looking for graduates to brag about. Check the magazine or college website for submission requirements.
4)      Goodreads Author Program and giveaways – Features include prelaunch advertising, buzz-building, and book giveaways that they will administer for you (you still have to provide the actual books). Thousands of readers have been known to enter individual giveaways. Check out goodreads.com/author/program
5)      Create your own book trailer – For several years authors have been creating and posting book trailers on YouTube.  Now, http://animoto.com/ allows you to create a 30 second video with ease for free. You can use Animoto’s stock images or upload your own (or a combination). Longer running times and additional features are available for a fee.
6)      Make public appearances – While blog tours can be successful in allowing interaction with readers the best and often most effective advertising is still face to face. Any time you can connect with an individual you have a better chance at leaving an impression and making a sale. Check into local book clubs, writers groups and conferences where you can speak and give away or sell copies.
7)      Create your own merchandise – business cards, pens, pencils, notepads, magnets, post cards, calendars, mugs, and clothing are all popular ways to advertise. Look into your local printers as well as online sources who often offer free samples and reduced rate packages. Ex. www.vistaprint.com offers your first 250 business cards free if you use one of their designs. They also frequently offer some of their other merchandise for free.

What other free or inexpensive ways do you utilize in promotion?

12 comments:

Murees Dupé said...

These are fantastic ideas, most of them I did not know about. Thank you for the tips.

Sylvia Ney said...

Murees - You are very welcome!

Someone just mentioned https://about.me/ but I have no personal experience with them.

Julie Luek said...

Great ideas-- bookmarked, noted and retained for the day when I can type, "author of..." Thanks for sharing such great ideas and resources.

Bish Denham said...

These are great. Thanks for the tips!

J. B. Kantt said...

Hey!
I just came across your blog and I really like it! I'm a new follower of yours!
I hope you'll stop by my blog sometime :)

J.B. http://jbkantt.blogspot.com/

Terry said...

Thanks for good ideas.
Re: the email signature - I ran into a problem this month, when I realized none of my 'sent' mail was being received. I finally contacted comcast, and they told me their spam filters were picking up emails that had web addresses in the signature; in order to use mine, I had to send it to them, let them mark it as approved to avoid the spam filter, and then try it again. I dropped mine to just one link (my web site) and dropped my blogs, Amazon page, etc.
I don't know if this is limited to Comcast accounts, but if people stop receiving your email, you might want to look into it.

Mary Aalgaard said...

Network with other bloggers, of course! Also, facebook is a fantastic tool for promoting.
Great post. I'm saving this one.

Sylvia Ney said...

Julie and Bish - you're very welcome. I hope they help you.

J.B. - Thanks for stopping by and commenting. I'll be over to check out your blog in just a minute.

Terry - Thanks for your comment about problems with Comcast. I know a lot of people using links in their signatures with other providers without problems. However, maybe this is a sign of things to come?

Mary - So glad you liked the post. Thanks for stopping by!

Mary Horner said...

Thanks for the great information. I need to use all of these ideas!

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