Focus: The solution to book marketing overwhelm

While teaching an online book marketing class with an ambitious agenda recently, I tried hard not to overwhelm the authors participating. I wanted to give them information they needed, but not so much of it that they would tune out because they couldn’t process anything more.

I paused about midway through the session to address my concern directly.

“I realize there’s a lot to know and learn, but I don’t want you to get overwhelmed,” I admitted before explaining the secret to avoiding overwhelm.

How to avoid book marketing overwhelm

I’d like to share that secret with you here.

The secret to avoiding book marketing overwhelm? It’s pretty simple — just one word, in fact: Focus.

Zig Ziglar expressed it so well when he said, “Lack of direction, not lack of time, is the problem. We all have 24-hour days.”

book marketing overwhelm

One thing at a time

In book marketing, that “lack of direction” also means there’s no focus. There’s so much you can do that it’s hard to know where to start — so maybe you don’t.

The solution?

Pick one book marketing tactic and focus on it.

Learn how to do it well. Do it over and over again.

Monitor what’s happening

And pay attention to what happens after you use that tactic. For example, if you’re focused on using Instagram effectively, do you have more followers? Are they more of the right followers — your target reader? Are you getting reactions to your posts?

Monitor the results, or lack thereof. Be honest with yourself about the outcome, too. Is the problem that the tactic isn’t a good fit, or is it possible that you aren’t using it properly?

If you’ve mastered the tactic but aren’t moving forward, it might be time to shift your focus to a different tactic.

When you’re ready to try a new one, repeat the process. Learn how to do it well, making adjustments based on what you’re learning.

As before, monitor what’s happening to determine if you’re making progress.

What should you focus on?

When several book marketing tactics will help you get your book in front of your ideal readers, it’s hard to know which to focus on first.

You might select one that:

  • Doesn’t intimidate you or look too hard to learn, or
  • Seems like one you might enjoy, or
  • Plays to your strengths, not your weaknesses, or
  • Takes advantage of your skills

In other words, start by taking the path of least resistance. It will be easier to make progress and get results with a book marketing tactic that doesn’t make you anxious or uncomfortable.

Be certain to select a tactic that reaches your readers, too. That will make sure you’re not wasting your time.

This is why it’s essential to know as much as you can about your target audience. It will help you select tactics that reach them both online and in the real world. (The Build Book Buzz training program, “Who Will Buy Your Book? How to Figure Out and Find Your Target Audience,” will help you if you aren’t clear on your audience or readers.)

What one book marketing tactic are you going to focus on this week? Please tell us in a comment. 

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  1. I know this was published back in March, but it’s the first time I’ve seen it. Thank you for narrowing all this “tech” stuff down. I plan to focus on the free promo on Kindle, when I release the 2nd book in my Cookie Crumbles Cozy Mystery Series. (Book #33 for me.) I’m an old lady (73), and all this book marketing stuff is just too hard to learn!

    1. Jill-Ayn, it doesn’t matter when you find the information you need. All that counts is that you find it! I hope all goes well with your Kindle campaign.


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