Publicity Tip #7
The goal is to get the word out about your fantastic book. You want people to be able to find you so that you can make sales, get reviews, and get noticed.
Book Hitch is a search engine for books; a great online tool for spreading the word and raising your profit margin – yes, you read it: they can help you make more money per book sale.
You need to learn how to work the system. It’s not hard, you just need a little guidance.
You have 2 options: FREE or PREMIUM ($19.95/book/year) subscription.
Set yourself FREE.
Yes, if you pay the premium, your book’s search ranking will rise to the top of options in your genre when searched. You will get to add a picture (and this helps sell, without a doubt), and your basic description goes up from 60 to 120 words. Other than being able to include reviews for potential buyer to see, the author bio & web page are not worth the cost – you’re doing this with your own author page anyway either on Facebook, via a blog, your own website, or any combination thereof.
The point is to get your book listed so that readers can find you. This includes a link to your author website or your publisher’s direct purchase site.
This is important. This is where you make more money.
Bypassing the distributor and getting a sale direct from you or your publisher cuts out the middle man and brings up your profits. If your book is listed at $18, immediately 55% ($10) is eaten up by the wholesale mark down (this is what it will cost a distributor to place your book in their catalog and provide free shipping to customers, etc.) Then there was the cost for printing your book in the first place (a 300 page book runs on average for a cost of $5 to the publisher) and the profit the book store will make ($2), whittles your royalties down to a whopping $1/book.
Get your fans to buy direct and the only expenditures are the print cost ($5) and shipping and handling ($5). Now you’re earning $8/book. You’ve gone from making less than 1% of profits to a bit more than 55%.
Don’t look a gift horse in the mouth.
Now, I’m not saying that you’ll get rich. On the free path with Book Hitch people will need to find you. So help them. Book Hitch offers a logo that you can place on your author/book website that will direct people to buy using this method. Tell your social media-verse about Book Hitch and the benefits of buying direct. Advertise this option at your event engagements (book readings, signings, virtual & physical book tours, local papers, etc.) and spread the word.
Here’s what you’ve been waiting for: The Catch.
Your ranking as an author is linked to the number of public sales you make. That means sales using those middle-men, the distributors: Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Chapters & Indigo, etc. You cannot abandon these resources if you want people to notice you. However, you need to ask yourself: What’s more important – making money or getting recognized? I’m not saying you can’t do both, you just need to know where your priorities lie.
That being said, if you find that Book Hitch is bringing you in a decent number of sales each month, you might be inclined to invest the $20 for the premium subscription. But don’t fall into their scheme for pay advertising – it’s too expensive. Our eyes drift over small book ads on webpages unless they are of the genre we are interested in and no one reads newsletters anymore. If you’re going to pay for advertising, do it on Amazon, with Good Reads, or a website with your target audience traffic – at least you’ll get your money’s worth there.