Before a big book launch, there are many moving parts and there's a great deal going on. It's hard to keep everything straight and there are bound to be at least some minor problems. But if you avoid these five major mistakes, your book launch should go smoothly for the most part and these will only be little snags along the way.
- Not-So-Hot Book
Some authors might not put as much effort into market research and preparation of their book because they think that their marketing prowess—or name recognition—alone will sell it, failing to consider the needs of their readers. If your book doesn't live up to the promise of its marketing, you'll have a disaster on your hands. You'll lose readers and damage your reputation, and there may not be a next book launch. The core of any good launch is a good book, so take the time to create one that meets your customers' needs.
- Not Starting Early Enough
Many authors start planning just a few weeks out of their launch and then find that either they haven't allowed enough time to fully promote the book and get interest going, or they run into trouble along the way. You should start planning your launch well in advance. Depending on the size of the launch, a good guideline is to start planning about one-two months ahead of the launch day.
- Who Are You Targeting?
Authors often have a good book but don't fully flesh out how to communicate its unique benefits to their market. With so many books flooding the market, why should a person buy yours? You need to clearly identify this and figure out how to communicate the unique benefits to your prospective buyers.
If you try to do everything by yourself, you may run into serious trouble. First, there's all of the work that goes into the pre-launch phase. You'll be burning the candle at both ends trying to get it all done. There are also skills you may lack or that others could do better. Finally, if you have an online sales force of affiliates and partners selling for you online, you'll greatly increase your reach.
- Neglecting to Test
Finally, many businesses fail to test their books and gain feedback from their target market. This feedback is objective data that tells you how your market really feels about your book. It tells you what changes you need to make to your book or messaging in order to make your launch a success.