Okay, so I know I run the risk of being a bit presumptuous here but, let’s just say you’ve read my latest book The Pick-Up Artist (available from all good book stores and, you know, Amazon) and you rather liked it.
Let’s further presume that you would like to help it on its way a little. What can you, the reader, do for the book? Doesn’t have to be my book of course – any book.
Word of mouth
Well the first thing, in some ways the most important thing, is to talk about it and tell people that you liked it and why.
All a little book like mine, published on a small press, ever has is word of mouth. It doesn’t have people behind it who can get it into the big chain book stores, sitting on those lovely tables at the front so casual browsers will pick it up. If doesn’t have a marketing team working out what to do to promote it or an advertising budget ensuring posters on the London Underground or ads popping up on Facebook.
All it has is you, the reader. But, luckily, word of mouth can be a very powerful thing. It can spread the news just as well as all the rich publishing houses can by throwing money at it – maybe even better.
Hearing from a friend that they love a book would make me more likely to buy it than seeing a poster – that’s a genuine recommendation from someone whose taste I trust.
So please, if you enjoyed the book – tell people!
If you enjoy a book why not mention it to your friends on Facebook? Hopefully they will appreciate the tip and the author of the book will certainly appreciate the mention. It works in the same way as a personal recommendation and can be a big help for a book which doesn’t have a marketing machine behind it. Twitter mentions help too and, if you are feeling particularly well disposed to the book, you could include a link to it on Amazon.
If you have read my book and enjoyed it, please take the time to post a short review of it on Amazon. Positive reviews on there are great as a casual browser will see them and know that others have enjoyed the book. It’s the sort of thing which can sway someone’s mind when they are deciding whether to buy a copy or not, that’s why publishers and authors, love positive Amazon reviews.
My new book has a precious few already on Amazon UK even though it is very early days. Just one so far on Amazon USA, though I am hopeful more will come!
If you have a blog please mention the book on there too. Author interviews are great for profile and book reviews are fantastic too. Many small press or self published authors do a few of these as a ‘blog tour’ when they have a new book out. I have done some already and would love to do more so if you can accommodate me let me know!
If you are a member of a book club and are in a position to choose what the group reads you know what to do when it comes to your turn! It might only mean a handful of books are sold and that might not matter one jot to a best-selling author. But you can be sure that for a small press author that handful is significant.
If you can recommend that your local library stock the book – or request it through them, then that’s an extra copy in circulation and more potential readers, and that is a great thing for a small press author. Sure we don’t get paid for those readers in the same way but at least the book is being read, which is a fantastic thing.
So there we are – if you have enjoyed a book and want to help it, and its author on their way to literary mega stardom then please do any or all of the above. And for those who already do these things – thank you ever so much on behalf of myself and other small press authors!