Marketing and advertising interest me, but I’m not sure I’d be a great marketer even for my own books, which is, of course, a disadvantage. Even traditional New York City publishers require authors to do much of the marketing on their own. Introverts aren’t all that great at putting themselves or their work in the public eye – and that’s a big hurdle to get over in the journey toward publication.
There’s a fine line to walk in marketing: being pushy versus not revealing enough information about the book. Nobody wants to be one of those people who constantly inserts, “And by the way I have a book out. It’s about vampire squirrels and you can buy it at Amazon!” at the end of every conversation or blog post.
I find it very hard to tell others about my work because I hate to be seen as one of those bragging people. Luckily, social media and blogging have made it a bit easier for introverts to spread the word about their works and find an audience. It also helps to give away free stuff and try to help others out by helping them to promote their own work. (It’s much easier for me to brag about someone else’s work than my own.) Eventually, the “karma” may come back around, and if you’re in need of help with marketing/promotion, then others will be more inclined to help you since you helped them. (The norm of reciprocity!)
In a way, I think that if you’re smart about it and plan your marketing/promotion strategies well, your book will eventually find its audience. If the book is of good enough quality (production quality, writing style, and editorial quality) and you know the right words to say about it as you’re promoting it online (or wherever), people will become interested and want to read it – or at least give you some constructive criticism on it.
How do you promote your books? Are you shy or hesitant about it?