Chip MacGregor

December 13, 2011

Step Five: Map Out Your Strategies

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Now that you know what your brand is, what your strengths and weaknesses are, what goals you're trying to reach, and who your target market is, you need to make some specific choices. What are the basic strategies you're going to use to market your book? There are a million things you COULD do. Maybe you've picked up a couple of marketing books that offer "101 marketing ideas," or you've attended a seminar and heard other authors talk about a bunch of ideas they've tried. You can't do them all… so what steps will you choose? 

 
Will you focus on blog tours? Give away a lot of copies? Talk with reading groups? Redesign your website? Do some conference speaking? Distribute press kits? Try to get on a bunch of radio programs? Spend a lot of time placing articles with magazines and e-zines? Develop podcasts? Solicit dozens of reviews? Dig deep into the various Amazon tools? Network with key people? Focus on your blog readership? Use your associations or groups to get the word out? Develop a bunch of give-aways? Focus on broadcast media? Spend a lot of time at libraries? Visit targeted groups around the country? Participate in direct mail? Get involved in trade shows and conventions? Rely on key endorsements and recommendations? Do an author tour? Buy advertisements on the best websites? Try to steer sales to your website? 
 
You can't do them all. In fact, you don't want to do them all, since they would't all prove effective for your book. So as you think about your target market, what are the basic strategies that make sense? As you think about your strengths and weaknesses, what are the strategies you definitely need to consider? What are the strategies you probably need to forget about? At this step, you're simply picking the basic area in which you plan to work. 

And remember, most marketing gurus will remind you to you think hard about your uniquenesses. If you're a good "events" person, then decide you're going to focus on event-based marketing strategies. If you have a book that appeals to a particular career field, think about strategies that focus on using networks and associations. Don't assume what some writer friend tried will work for you — your book is different, and YOU are different. 
 

So here's where you make choices. In light of all the work you've done so far, what are the basic strategies that fit you, that fit your book, and that you think will help you to stand in front of your intended audience? 

 

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