Book marketing has come a long way since Medieval scribes advertised their services in the Middle Ages. For one thing, there is an entire branch of psychology that deals specifically with marketing. I recently came across a great post by a marketing student with 7 psychological tricks you can use in marketing. That post formed the basis of this one, only this one deals with book promotion in particular instead of marketing in general. I hope you find it useful!
1. Your Book Needs To Fit Your Genre
It’s important to understand your readers and what they expect from you. Every genre has some common traits. And you need to respect that.
Everything about your book, from your title to the book cover, needs to fit your genre.
Let’s take YA fiction, for example. Your readers will probably be 15-to-25-years-old. The most common trait in these age group are – openness to experiment, rebellious, energetic, young, and so on.
So, your book should keep these traits in mind. Choose a name that reflects their traits. And promote it while keeping these traits in mind.
2. Your Ads Should Include Stimuli
By stimuli, I mean anything that will trigger an emotional response.
When composing your blurb, a question like “who would you save; your wife or daughter?” creates a conflict that will act as a hook. It will draw the reader in and stay with them, encouraging them to buy the book in order to find out how you resolve the tension (read more tips on writing the perfect book blurb here).
Similarly, when you create an Ad or a book cover, you can use visual stimuli to trigger an emotional response. Color choice is an easy way of achieving this. The idea is that the Ads should act as a catalyst to speed up the process of need recognition: here is a book that will answer a need of mine. Your blurb, cover, and Ads should convey that this book will fulfill your undiscovered needs and complete your lifestyle.
3. Target the Subconscious Mind
When you try to convince someone to buy your book using arguments, you are addressing their conscious mind. This is what we do every time we’re at a booth discussing our books.
However, you can also put your book in the mind of readers even as they are unaware of it. Appeal to basic human instincts: rebelious teens will appreciate the image of a tough YA heroine that goes against the grain, thus making them feel good about themselves. And why do you think all such heroines are scantily clad? Again, it’s an appeal to readers’ most basic instincts.
Love it or hate it, appealing to our subconscious works.
4. Trigger the Mirror Neurons
Mirror neurons are parts of our brain that mirror other people’s behavior. They let us relate to others.
Triggering our readers’ mirror neurons is fancy talk for creating Ads that make our book relatable to our audience. This principle is widely used in marketing: you want people to imagine themselves as desirable and attractive as the people they see in advertisement.
You can take advantage of this through the power of influencer marketing, among others. To better understand how to take advantage of influencer marketing to boost your book on social media, check out this post.
5. Follow the KISS Principle
KISS – keep it simple, stupid. The importance of simplicity can’t be overstated.
Your Ads should convey a simple message to be understood easily. The message should be represented in a way that viewer finds it interesting and gets engaged with the Ads. Avoid anything that may confuse your readers.
6. Help Readers Remember You
Long-term memory depends on so-called structural stimuli. Basically, we find it easier to remember two kinds of things:
- Things we encounter often. Repetition is key.
- Things that excite us. Novelty and uniqueness are crucial.
To retain your readers, you have to keep writing. Every new book you write will make you more memorable. Every reader who remembers you is a potential buyer. Yes, it’s as simple as that.
Also, promoting your books both online and offline will help readers remember you. The more channels you use, the more people you can reach and the more memorable you and your books become.
7. Remind Readers Your Best Points
This takes advantage of the so-called selective retention. People tend to remember good points. That’s why the past often looks brighter than the present.
To use selective retention, focus on well-chosen information about your author brand and your books. Don’t confuse your readers with uninteresting or irrelevant information. Only present any those facts that can attract more readers.