When you combine the new releases from both traditional publishing houses and self-publishing authors, close to four million books are published each year. With that much competition, getting those first sales for your self-published book can seem daunting. The experts at Self-Publishing Relief know that readers enjoy coming across new writers and new books, but it’s your job as an author to make yourself discoverable! Here’s how to find the first buyers for your new book and get the ball rolling on building your sales.
8 Ways To Land The First Buyers For Your Self-Published Book
- Social media posts. Reaching out to your social media followers is key to landing your first book sales! Consider building a presence on the new social media sites like Bluesky and Threads, which both have large literary communities filled with avid readers.
- Author website. We’ve said it before and we’ll say it again: An author website is the best place to consolidate and solidify your author brand! If readers are curious about your book, the first thing they’ll do is check to see if you have an author website. Your author website will also make it easier for booksellers, distributors, and other authors to learn about you and your writing!
- Amazon Author page. If your self-published book is available for sale on Amazon, take advantage of the free Author Page feature! It’s an easy way to keep the buy links for all of your books in one place, connect with your readers, collate reviews, and follow important Amazon stats for your books. And it’s especially important for building sales, since people visiting your Amazon Author page are usually in a mindset to buy your book! Click here to learn more about setting up your Amazon Author page.
- Advance readers. Be sure to send advance reading copies of your book to friends, fellow writers, book bloggers, and professional reviewers. Advanced reading copies, or ARCs, are copies of a book that’s almost ready for publication but hasn’t yet been released to the public. Good book reviews are all-important for a self-published author, so garnering a bunch before your book even releases can help you rack up those early sales.
- Goodreads. Goodreads is an essential site for readers—and authors! Readers use Goodreads to catalog books they’ve read or want to read. Goodreads users also write in-depth book reviews and tag a book by its key genres and topics. Encourage your advance readers to leave Goodreads reviews to help new readers find and buy your book.
- Book events. Independent bookstores often jump at the chance to hold events with local authors! Whether in-person or virtual, book events come in many formats: You can read a passage or a few pages from your book; join a panel that also features other authors; or participate in a Q&A with an interviewer or fellow author—just to name a few.
- Cross-promotion. One of the smartest things you can do as a self-published author is to develop professional relationships with other authors. When you’re just starting out, the positive word of an author who readers already trust can be invaluable! And if you team up with other authors for events, you’ll gain access to a larger audience that you might not have reached otherwise.
- Swag bags. Another way to get new readers excited about your book is to give away little book-related items! Giveaways like free bookmarks help draw potential buyers to your table at a conference or book event. And when you send your book to advance readers or book bloggers, they’re more likely to review the books of authors who send a little swag!
And The Most Important Way To Get Your First Sales…
Know your audience! Thriller readers can be very different from romance readers, who can be equally different from historical readers, and so on. When you’re starting to market your self-published book and work toward your first book sales, be sure to know your audience. Every marketing choice you make should be made with those readers in mind!
Once you lock down those first sales, good word-of-mouth and an audience of primed-and-ready buyers should help your book sales grow! To ensure the attention you get is positive, be sure your book is polished and professional-looking. At Self-Publishing Relief, we help authors navigate every step of the process, from manuscripts to published books they can be proud to put their name on. Visit us at SelfPublishingRelief.com and schedule your free consultation today!
Question: Which marketing strategy will you try for your self-published book?