Author Resources
Free Publishing Guide

Creating Your Marketing Plan
Part 2: Outlining Your Marketing Budget

In the November issue of Voices in Print, we discussed determining your sales and marketing goals. Of course, any goals you set must be within the confines of what you're willing to spend. As you set your budget, you can determine how broad your promotional efforts can be and what types of promotional activities are cost-effective for your plan and your budget.

Say, for example, that you can allocate no more than $1,000 to your marketing budget. You'll need to handle almost all of the marketing activities on your own, and therefore, will be investing a great deal of your time in the effort. You'll also need to rely on no-cost or low-cost promotional activities, including:

  • word-of-mouth publicity
  • making guest-speaker appearances at local organizations
  • soliciting book reviews, interviews, and media appearances
  • distributing press releases
  • writing articles related to your book's topic, for publication in print media
  • creating your own Web site to promote the book
  • offering free copies of your book as door prizes, raffle prizes, or event giveaways

If your marketing goals are considerably larger, however, you'll probably need to invest more money in your budget. Distributing press kits with review copies, photographs, bookmarks and other marketing materials requires some investment, as do direct mail advertising and advertisement in local media outlets. Advertising in national markets, purchasing trade show booths, and a large online marketing campaign are among the more costly promotional activities you can include in a heftier marketing budget. Setting up author tours or arranging for personal appearances at major events can require a significant investment of time and highly honed skills in self-promotion, in addition to the expenses of related travel.

Think carefully about the amount of time and money you can comfortably invest in your marketing plan, and then create a plan that fits well with your ability to invest.

*Adapted from Your Voice in Demand: The AuthorHouse Guide to Marketing and Promoting Your Book