It’s no secret that authors shouldn’t wait until they’ve published a book to start marketing it. In fact, you should be thinking about marketing even before you write a book. You start with market research, but you can move into pre-launch marketing campaigns months before your book is ready to be released. Let’s talk about what AIW members do as a part of their pre-launch marketing efforts to share ideas and help each other build better book marketing plans.
I’ll kick things off with a list of some things you should consider working on early on:
Develop your media kit
Build a custom media list
Set up social media profiles under your author name
Set up an author or book website and blog and optimize them well for search engines
Identify all potential target reader groups for your book (“everyone” is not a correct answer, but you can also overly limit yourself)
Spend time connecting with those target reader groups, and do what you can to help them or entertain them (depending on whether you’re publishing nonfiction or fiction)
Create your book trailer (if you plan to use one — but don’t half-ass it with little more than a stream of generic stock photos; do it well, or don’t use this tactic at all)
Get a professional cover designed, and don’t wait until the last minute; you’ll use this graphic in other pre-launch marketing efforts
Start building an email list, especially if you’re publishing nonfiction
Perfect the copywriting on your book landing page / sales page on your own site
Look into (and reach out to) possible partners who can help promote your book
These are bare bones basic tactics that you should consider. There are countless other things you can (and often should) do as a part of your pre-launch book marketing and PR campaigns. What would you add to the list?