Category Archives: book marketing
“Comps” are other book titles that might be comparable to your book. The main purpose for comps is to show who your readers are likely to be and to show where your book might be shelved in a bookstore. Often agents, publishing sales people or booksellers need this information to understand more about your book. It gives them a better idea for categorizing your title. If you are self-publishing, comps are a guide to the readers you want to reach. So how do you find comps for your book? Here are a few ideas –
- Look up the Best Sellers in the last few years for your genre
- Check out more recent books with similar themes or point of view
- Utilize your local library to locate books you can read or listen to without having to purchase them. See if your library uses Novelist Plus which allows you to search for books by theme, genre and appeal. You can also ask your librarian.
- Use social media sites to find out what is popular in that genre
- If you are in any writing groups, ask other writers or readers what they would recommend
- Film and TV can be used as comps as well as books. If it gives a reliable comparison of what you are writing, then use it. Sometimes a visual is the best explanation. (If you use media, be sure to clarify your source)
- Describe what part of a plot or characterization might be like your book.
- Try not to compare your book to one that is too far out of date unless it is very well known and liked. Let people know that you are keeping up with the marketplace.
Barnes & Noble and Amazon show a lot of sales data that can be beneficial for comps. People often buy items that are similar. Especially when it comes to books, you can enter a title on their sites and then look for books that are recommended that appear under these headers:
“Customers who bought this also bought . . .” (Amazon and Barnes & Noble) “Frequently bought together” (Amazon)
“What customers bought after viewing this” (Amazon)
- You can also ask people who have read your book for some suggestions.
TIP – Avoid saying that your book is better than someone’s title or classic. It might be better, but you don’t want to be the one to say it. Attacking another author only puts a negative spotlight on you. Reading is subjective, and what you hated, others might love. So, compare your book to others that you admire or respect.
Are you influenced by other comparable titles? I’d love to hear your thoughts.
An enormous “Thank You” to Dr. John Brimhall at Brimhall Wellness
for the opportunity to display my books at their 2020 Homecoming in Tempe, January 17 – 19. I was able to connect with many new folks and view the other exhibits there as well. It was a great weekend. My good friends, Brian and Alex were there being super supportive. Thanks guys! Many many thanks to everyone who stopped by. It was a pleasure to meet you all. Check out the pics below –
Check out my website for all my books and fun extras. Happy Reading!
If you want to find information on anything concerning being an author or just writing in general, there are some outstanding and informative blogs out there to help with anything and everything you might need to know, including all the things you didn’t realize you needed to know. So here are a few of them for you to check out.
Have a great September – and Happy Reading!
Tags: amazon, amazon kdp, blogging, books, Creatiave Penn, fantasy, fiction, indie authors, log-line, perfect blog post, self publishing, solitaire, solitaire parke, steps for writing, urban fantasy, writing
When it comes to self-publishing, there are countless blogs out there written by authors primarily selling their books, by “experts” selling their services, and then the ones that are full of advice and entertaining stories that you don’t want to miss reading.
They are, however, not all created equal. Some are just more passionate about the information they are providing, and overall they give us more valuable knowledge in all aspects of self-publishing. I don’t know about you, but I can use every available resource. Knowledge is power, or in this case, possibly the difference between success and failure. So here is a list of some of the most informative blogs available to help you achieve that success.
Founded by Joel Friedlander, former book designer and founder of an information- packed blog. It has extensive resources and tools, guides and books, video instruction, and an online training course – The Self-Publishing Roadmap. This is a full service blog.
Former publisher of Writer’s Digest, a writer, editor of the Virginia Quarterly Review, and media professor. She helps authors learn the business side of publishing and how the digital age affects everything from transforming writers, publishing, and storytelling. She has online classes and author services as well as countless resources.
London-based website by self-published author, entrepreneur, and speaker Joanna Penn. She provides the resources to help you write, publish and market your book. She has books, courses, tools, and podcasts to propel you in the right direction. All kinds of great information here.
Founded in 2011 by independent author and consultant Stephen Hise as a platform to celebrate independent authors. Operates like an interactive online magazine. Contains thousands of helpful staff articles as well as tutorial books for authors. Offers opportunities for authors to display their books on the site, video trailers, new release announcements and a featured book section.
Founded by David P. Vandagriff, a writer who has a background in law, intellectual property litigation and tech. Hundreds of articles relating to self-publishing. Learn about enhanced e-books, fiction fundamentals or self-publishing strategies.
At the Savvy Book Marketer, Dana Lynn Smith shares a wealth of tips, advice and tools to help you sell more books and make more money from your publishing business. She is an author,has a marketing degree, and 19 years of publishing experience. Endless tips and resources for aspiring authors.
There is always something new on these sites almost daily, so check them out!
Have any suggestions for other great websites or blogs?
Author of –
THE DRAGOMEIR SERIES ( If you love dragons, you’ll find this series intriguing and a lot of fun!)
Tags: Dana Lynn Smith, David P. Vandagriff, Dragomeir Series, dragon books, dragon riders, great author blogs, indie authors, Indies Unlimited, joanna penn, joel friedlander, solitaire parke, Stephen Hise, The Book Designer, The Creative Penn, the dragomeir books, The Passive Voice, The Savvy Book Marketer, writing
A target audience is the person or group of people a piece of writing is intended to reach. This seems to be one of the most difficult questions to figure out for a writer/author. I, for one, have struggled with this one. So I’ve been doing some research and have uncovered some tips from multiple sources that have been helpful to me. Although we as authors would like to believe that the books we spend hours poring over are going to be loved by everyone, rarely is that the case. We all have our preferences as to what interests us, which accounts for the racks upon racks of books and genres that are found in bookstores and on the internet everywhere. In order to maximize the promotion of your books and put them in front of those who would most likely be your audience, you need to know which categories and genres they fall under so that readers can easily find the specific books that interest them. If you find and narrow your niche it will enable you to appeal to and reach more of the readers that will ultimately buy your book. What group/groups of readers are you targeting and how do you accomplish that tricky, but very important feat? Well, here are some tips I found that might be helpful:
- Try to isolate what types or groups of people the content of your book would interest. Is it about something historical? – history buffs, or elements of the future? – sci-fi, does it have elves or fairies? – fantasy, is it technical or educational? – educators and/or computer buffs, etc. If it has elements of several different topics it could appeal to a number of types of people. The groups of readers may overlap. (You may have multiple target audiences.)
- Pinpoint what is special about your book – what words would you use to describe it specifically to someone if they asked what it was about. (What is the hook?) Is your story scary, comedic, fantastic and/or futuristic, educational, technical, mysterious?
- Determine what age your book would most likely appeal to. (Demographic) Is it something kids, teens, young adults, adults, or a combination of readers would enjoy?
- Look at other books that are comparable to your book and applicable to the topic or subtopic in your book. identify who are their main readers/buyers. (Check at Amazon or Barnes & Noble to see what books are in their categories.)
- You can Google the reader demographics for magazines, publications or newsletters that are applicable to the topic or subtopic in your book.
- Investigate compatible author websites. See who is making comments and check out their profiles. They might be your target audiences.
- Examine the type of vocabulary you have used or are going to use in your book. How would it change depending on whether you were addressing children, teens, or adults? Who would relate to the way your characters are speaking.
Once you have identified your target audience, look at the users of the social media sites, publications, or blogs to see where those readers hang out. Start heading in those directions to find the people that are compatible with your writing, and connect with them to grow a fan base. Be where they are.
I hope this helps you to determine your target audience and better connect with your readers.
Tired of hunting for information?
If you want to find out how to do just about anything pertaining to writing, publishing and marketing books, this is one of the most comprehensive websites I have found yet. It is run by Joel Friedlander, and there are links to information you may not even have thought you would need. I have found it to be incredibly helpful in so many areas and thought I would pass it along. Definitely check it out. You’ll be glad you did!
Here is the link –