Secrets to Successful Romance Book Marketing

Natasha Boyd 2

Natasha Boyd is an internationally bestselling and award-winning author of contemporary romantic southern fiction.  She is also a marketing and public relations expert. She launched herself into the world of romance writing with Eversea, her debut novel.

With a Bachelor of Science in Psychology, and internationally successful books under her belt, she understands how consumers make emotional decisions to purchase and read. So much so that the author — who has lived in South Africa, Belgium and England — now lives and writes full-time in the USA.

Natasha will be sharing her vast experience and practical wisdom in the upcoming workshop, 3-2-1 Launch! How to Give Your Book the Best Lift Off.  Sponsored by Passionate Ink, a chapter of Romance Writers of America, the workshop is May 5th – 19th, 2016. It takes place online, and is open to members of PI, RWA, and the writing public. Cost is, respectively, $18.75, $22.50, and $25.00. Register here.

We spoke to Natasha about why book marketing is so important and what authors need to know before launching a book. Her workshop, 3-2-1 Launch! How to Give Your Book the Best Lift Off, will cover the most up-to-date  insights on book marketing in 2016, so it is great for new authors as well as those that want to improve their approach and skills.
Why is marketing so important at the launch of a book. What makes the launch so important?

Well, one needs to ask oneself why you are publishing a book. Do you want people to read it? If you do then you answered this question. The year I entered the publishing world, there were approximately one million books available on the kindle store.  Today, a mere three years later there are over 3 million, some people say far more. Any book published today is to quote John Green “A shout into the void”. There’s no point.    I’d also say marketing AT the launch is not enough. You need to market before the launch and throughout the launch.

New authors do not always realized they must do more than a upload a great book to Amazon. What are some of the biggest mistakes you see?

I am convinced that the next incredible novel that will blow your mind and keep you up all night has already been published. The sad thing is we may never EVER hear of it. So the biggest mistake is thinking the book is the only part of being a successful author (with one’s own definition of what success means to them obviously).  New authors entering the market now need to know and do things that are different from even a year ago.  I think all authors new or not keep making mistakes, but we also keep getting some stuff right.  The key is staying informed, understand that only WE are in charge of our success and being willing to shift and adapt from things that aren’t working to things that are.  And we’ll go through a lot of those things in the course.

In a sea of new books released every month, what are three key things authors need to stand out?

I hate to say the three key things don’t really change that much:
1.Professional Cover
2.Professional Edit
3.Reviews!  And we’ll cover different ways to get these in the course.

How important is an author’s brand?

I’m going to say fairly important. The reason I’m not adamant about this is because a new author needs to develop a brand. Very few have a good strong brand coming out of the gate. The reason for this is you can’t predict exactly what elements readers are going to resonate with. But you can and should develop a brand fairly quickly and it have it be robust. Strong but also willing to accommodate some deviations as you respond to market changes. As important as it is to have a brand – it’s important not be boxed in by your brand.

You help participants come up with a launch plan in your course. When should marketing begin – week before? Months?Months. But this doesn’t mean that if your book is already published or your it’s out in a few weeks that there aren’t some things you could and should do.

Do you think cover reveals help?
Yes and No. They do help to build awareness but you also risk “fatiguing” your audience if they have no call to action. I’ll discuss calls to action during the course.  But as far as “fatiguing” goes: Do you remember when I mentioned how many books are out there? Every week thousands are published. Your readers are being desensitized on a minute by minute basis. Reveal your cover too soon and the chances are they won’t care by the time you release. Two years ago I’d have said reveal your cover 3 months in advance. Last year I recommended 1 month. Now, I believe it needs to be part the run up to release. This is problematic for those with long tail preorders but that’s another subject on its own!

3-2-1 Launch! How to Give Your Book the Best Lift Off
By Natasha Boyd/Register here:
May 5th – 19th, 2016
TRACK: Marketing
LENGTH: 2 weeks
$25.00 for Non-Members
$22.50 for RWA Members (10% OFF)
$18.75 for Passionate Ink Members (25% OFF)

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