Today we're celebrating launch of a new edition of Self-Printed: The Sane Person's Guide To Self-Publishing, by Catherine Ryan Howard. This book (and Catherine's blog, Catherine, Caffeinated) were a big part of what got me interested in self-publishing, so she has a lot to answer for! The new edition of Self-Printed is completely re-written and updated to reflect where we are and how we need to be publishing and marketing as indie authors in 2014.
Catherine is celebrating the launch with a ask-me-anything free-for-all for all her loyal readers. So I asked her about something I was recently told I should be doing to promote my books: sending out press releases. Did Catherine agree? Hell, no. Here's what she had to say.
Me: Should I be sending out press releases to promote my books? I'm already Tweeting and blogging and Pinteresting and God-knows-what-else. Do I have to add another chore to my marketing list?
Catherine Ryan Howard: Self-publishers need to step away from traditional publication and put down the press releases. It's not going to help.
The self-publisher's aim should be to put as little distance between the place where the reader finds outs about the book (the promotion) and the place where they can buy a book. As we are selling our books online, this means that the promotion should be ONLY online.
Imagine you see a tweet about a book and you are immediately enthralled and want to buy it. In seconds you can be on Amazon clicking that buy button - which is great for the author because seconds isn't much time for you to lose interest and/or change your mind. But what if they read about your book in the newspaper or hear you on the radio? The interest has to last until they get home or get to their computer and they have to remember all the details long enough to find you on Amazon. That's a tall order. On a practical level, it just DOESN'T work. What self-publisher has sold 1,000,000s and said, "Well, it's all down to my local newspaper..." Clue: zero. Social media and reviews (book bloggers, Goodreads, etc.) is where it's at.
Forget traditional media. That's for traditionally published books. You are in the brave new world of self-publishing and you'll be navigating with an entirely different map.
Catherine Ryan Howard is a writer, self-publisher and caffeine enthusiast from Cork, Ireland. SELF-PRINTED: THE SANE PERSON'S GUIDE TO SELF-PUBLISHING (3rd edition) is out now in paperback and e-book and available from Amazon. Follow the #selfprintedsplash on Twitter today (Friday 24th) and/or visit www.catherineryanhoward.com for chance to win an amazing prize that will get your self-publishing adventure started!
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