When does publicity translate to book sales? Typically, there’s a slow burn: your book is mentioned for a long, long time—months before it actually goes on sale. Delayed gratification can be meaningful! With this seed planted long ago in people’s minds, your book suddenly appears anywhere and everywhere when launch month comes.
However, there’s a powerful myth that needs debunking, and that myth is that publicity is what matters most for book sales.
Too often, writers hinge all of their hopes on media attention, which is variable, unscientific, and often, something our egos long for, but readers don’t care about as much as we think.
What makes a reader pull the trigger? Belief in your credibility and interest in your ideas—and not necessarily because a television host or journalist said so.
Here’s another insight:
The factors a buyer considers are often the same as those a publisher considers when evaluating an author’s work for publication. Media recognition is a nice-to-have. But it’s not a need-to-have.
Content, however, is a necessity. And this can be delivered in a number of more quantifiably proven formats, such as:
Combine any or all of the above with a media outreach effort, and that’s when things can really take off.