Promotion and Marketing a Book–Which One for You?

Since Muse It Up Publishing published my e-book, Sunshine Boulevard, in March this year, and even before the release date, I have furiously promoted the book and myself as J Q Rose. Or have I marketed or promoted the book? Which do you use to explain this absolutely exhausting experience after writing a book and then signing a contract?

In dictionary.com promotion is defined as encouraging the sale of a product by advertising or securing financial support. Marketing is defined as the total of activities involved in the transfer of goods from the producer or seller to the consumer or buyer, including advertising, shipping, storing, and selling.

I don’t know why we always say promtion and marketing when they actually mean about the same thing. Either way an author has to do most of it unless you are a big name like Stephen King and we won’t even go there for J K Rowling.  The usual methods of promotion is an author website, blog connected to website or not, blogs for your book’s characters or book cover, join yahoo groups such as coffee time romance or your genre’s groups, your publisher’s author group and readers group if available, Facebook, Twitter, My Space, Good Reads or Shelfari….  I’m exhausted just looking at all the places to connect. This list does not include advertising in online or print magazines. Some ads are within my price range. But as in most promotion, the author has no idea if all the time and money, even reaped a sale. I also did not include press releases to your local hometown paper. Of course, an author can always rely on Aunt Fanny or you mom and family and friends to advertise for you by talking up your “fantastic” book.

Book trailers are very popular and are becoming more sophisticated in their production. I actually enjoyed creating mine.  Check out the Sunshine Boulevard trailer.

I tried an “e-signing” with two local authors who had print books for sale. They sold their books, but so many people do not understand e-books or the idea of how to order one. (Oh yes, I helped a neighbor download my e-book on the Internet. When we were in the middle of the process, she told me she couldn’t wait till the book came in the mail. I was flabbergasted. She had no concept, like so many others, of this new technology.)

The visitors at the signing who said they had a Kindle, etc took my business cards and post cards from the table, but I’ll never know how many actually ordered the e-book. I did have coupons from my publisher so that if someone wanted to purchase it that minute while I sat at the table, I could take her money and give her a code to use when ordering the book online at the publisher’s bookstore.  Ummm, yes very complicated and almost impossible for folks to understand in this setting, so I quit trying to explain it, especially if they already had an online account with an e-book retailer already established.

I am very excited that I have had the opportunity to publish a book and to go through all the steps needed to write, query, get the contract, and to experience the release date. In fact through the promotion I have met so many wonderful folks by being a guest on fellow authors’ blogs and to host authors on my blog.

I write this blog post as a cautionary tale. When sitting alone writing your book, I do not think the writer realizes the amount of work left to be done once the contract is signed and the book is published. To get your work into the reader’s hands, you must promote/market it. So be prepared for that extra duty.

After all is said and done, I know such a cliche, I would do it all again. Writing, publishing and selling my book has been a learning experience and a thrill enriching another chapter in my life.

Promotion takes a LOT of time especially when the book is launched. Once caveat I have learned too late is that most reviewers want to review the new releases. Once the book is over two months old, there are not many reviewers interested in talking about the book.

In fact, since March I have let all my works in progress (WIP) slack off. I have just begun to pick up and write again on a story and do research. (BTW the next mystery involves finding the church music director dead in the basement of the church.)

Speaking of Promotion–Here’s MORE shameless promotion!!  LOL

My e-book is available at Muse It Up Publishing Bookstore http://tinyurl.com/2c53noz

and Amazon.com http://tinyurl.com/4czwr6h

and bn.com http://tinyurl.com/4442b94

 and major online booksellers.

J Q Rose Website http://www.jqrose.webs.com

J Q Rose Blog  http://www.jqroseauthor.blogspot.com

I always keep this info handy so it is easy to find. You should too when your book launches. Best wishes on your writing journey!

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