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Added a post  to  , All about self-publishing

Belated Happy New Year all. 

Just about to send my book off for a line-edit and commission my preferred cover designer, social media up and running and website nearly complete, but now worrying about marketing for probable publishing at the start of April. 

You clever folk who have already done it all will probably think I'm being a total wimp, but I'm starting to think it might be better to farm out some of the marketing work to someone who knows what they're doing. I've watched videos and read all the advice here from helpful individuals but frankly, I'm nervous. Never was good at ploughing through and interpreting stats and data. Plus, my time is going to be severely limited this year because of re-opening the museum I run with no.1 husband. Virus-permitting that will be at Easter, which, darn it, is also April. And book 2 is nagging me to complete it. 

Has anyone handed over any of their marketing to an agency? If so, which one? How did it work for you? 

    • Hi Carol

      I self-published my second novel 6 weeks ago - it is number 2 in a series. 

      Personally, writing the books was a walk in the park compared to the marketing. Like you, I spent over a year learning about book marketing - reading blogs, books, articles, watching videos, going on forums - David Gaughran and Chesson must think I'm stalking them :)

      That was well over a year ago....and I'm none the wiser now I've tried marketing two books. It truly is a minefield.  

      I do feel that the day marketing agencies start charging based on their success rather than the number of hours work they do, we will all feel much more confident in paying for their services. But guess what? They are no more confident that they can work out Amazon's algorithms or guarantee sales from a pretty photo they put up for you on Instagram or post a tweet, than you are. 

      I HATE social media, but took a deep breath and prepared to prostitute myself on Instagram. I still don't know whether what I have done is responsible for sales - and that's the problem with marketing more often than not. It really is tough to work out which of your marketing methods have worked/are working.  

      I don't wish to come across in a negative way but sadly I do think there are soooo many people out there claiming they will deliver a brilliant marketing campaign for you - but is that what you want? I want them to deliver me brilliant sales...and they steadfastly refuse to do that.

      I have learned a bit by trial and error and it's not a bad way to start. It's only by really understanding how the whole book buying and selling machine works globally that you could properly brief and monitor any agency you did decide to use anyway, otherwise, they can pull the wool over your eyes big time.

      I truly wish you luck with whatever you choose to do.


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      • I went to a local bookshop with The Mystery of the Lost Husbands and had a physical book launch which was really successful. The shop, One Tree Books, then put their bestseller list on Instagram and since I was top of the list for that week they sold another 10 books. They also got a mention in the local paper as I was a local author.

        Marketing agencies may work but local things you can do yourself, and remember all the local places benefit too. The bookshop made a profit and the paper had an interesting article. Win win!🤪🥰

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        • Yes, it would be wonderful to be able to do that too Georgina and Janet. However, only one bookshop (apart from WHSmith) in the entire local area, and that only sells books for children. A real shame, because my surroundings feature large as my series progresses.

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          • Gosh, that is awful. Do you have any libraries? I’m not sure if you are in the UK, but if you are you can join the PLR public library scheme and every time your book is taken out of the library you get paid, not much but it builds up. 

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            • Georgina. Sorry, didn't notice this response until today. It didn't show up in my notifications. Yes, I'm in the UK. Will look at PLR. Thank you.

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            • Hi Carol

              I have self published two books over the last year and I agree with Helen, writing the books is the easy part. I have found that the dreaded social media has been my best avenue to sales. I have tried Facebook Ads and sometimes you sell enough to cover the costs but not always. I have joined a great group of writers on Twitter where I have met loads of lovely writers who are so supportive. Through that I have virtually met some book bloggers and done a couple of writer interviews. 

              I need to set up a website but that has been on my to do list for a long time now!

              I haven't sold heaps of books but I guess most of us are not in this game to make money but to share our stories with others. Good luck with the launch.  


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