Summer’s Hot for Books – Take Advantage!
Is your stack of summer reading piled by the flip-flops and beach towels, all set for poolside mornings?
Have you downloaded your e-book for the flight to Aruba? Checked out some audio books for the family drive to the Grand Canyon?
If you said, “Yes,” you’re among the 50 percent of book lovers who change their reading habits over the summer, according to a survey by TFW, a lifestyle magazine for professional women.
Summer’s prime time for readers – and for not-so-much-readers, too. There’s nothing like a good book, a lounge chair and a cold glass of lemonade (or maybe a margarita?) for soaking up the sun. Books help make all that waiting at the airport bearable, and they can turn long drives into an adventure.
Why all this about my favorite warm-weather pastime? Because if you’ve been waiting for the right time to market your book, that time has come.
Bloggers, book reviewers, newspapers and magazines will soon be publishing their summer reading lists. Radio and TV talk shows will be sharing their favorite new authors. Voracious readers will be chomping at the bit for something delicious and new, and people too busy to read the rest of the year will be primed for some lazy self-indulgence.
According to that TFW survey, fiction is the most popular summer reading material. Mystery/thrillers and self-help books tied for second place. Business/money books came in third.
While most people still prefer a traditional book (65 percent in this poll), the numbers of e-book readers are climbing. That’s good news for those of you offering the option; 25 percent of respondents preferred Kindle to paper, or even to other electronic book readers.
If you want to take advantage of the summer reading warm-up and get your book into the mix, here are a few things you should do:
- Make sure your website’s up-to-date and prominently features your newest book. You must have sales copy on the home page – written by a professional, if possible – that quickly tells visitors why they’ll love your book. Make sure your “About” section includes interesting and relevant information about you, written in a conversational style, and be sure to include contact information.
- Start talking about summer reading on your social media networks. Get the conversations going by asking people to recommend their favorite beach books. Once everyone’s talking about plots, characters and settings, you can slide in a comment or two about your plot, characters or setting and direct folks back to your website. (Be careful – you don’t want to sound like the Fuller Brush man or the Avon lady!)
- Look for opportunities to get your name, book and website in the news. Reviews aren’t the only way to get your name out there. Come up with tips and story ideas that feature you as an expert and pitch them to newspapers and radio shows. For instance, if you write children’s books, email mommy bloggers, parenting magazines and features editors with five clever tips to keep kids reading when school lets out. (Tell them you’re available if they’d like an exclusive article, too.) If you have a novel set in British Columbia, offer travel editors five off-the-beaten-path things to do there. Look online for radio and TV shows that cover topics you might be able to tie into your book theme and pitch yourself as a guest.
- Make sure any publicity you get comes back to your website. Post links to any articles or interviews on your site to show visitors you’ve got the attention of the media. It adds to your credibility and trustworthiness, and it keeps that publicity working for you for weeks and months to come.
If you’ve been dragging your heels on marketing yourself and your book, don’t procrastinate any longer! You’ll never see as many people with books in their hands as you will in summertime – shouldn’t some of them be yours?
Of course this is what we do every day for our clients, and we’ll be happy to do it for you, too. If you give it a try and find you’d just rather lay by the pool with a good book, give us a call.
Wishing you sunny days ahead,