Book Marketing Begins Before You Write Your Book

Book marketing and book publicity aren’t afterthoughts to writing your book or e-book. You should be thinking about book marketing before you even sit down and begin writing. While pre-launch book marketing efforts are important for all authors, they’re especially vital to indie authors. Because indie publishing means you're going into business and bringing your own product to market, you can't afford to neglect the up front market research involved.

Here are some of the basic things you should focus your preliminary market research around:

  • Do other books in your niche exist? What are they?
  • Is there any consumer need for your book idea, or is the subject in a saturated market?
  • Does your niche have a history of selling well?
  • What are the demographics and psychographics of your target market(s)?
  • What are the strengths and weaknesses of the books that would be your primary competition?
  • What are your strengths and weaknesses in relation to that competition?
  • What kind of shelf space do books in the niche get?
  • Is the subject matter of the book something that will still be relevant when it’s written, published, and on the market?
  • What kind of marketing budget would you personally have, and for what period of time?
  • How are similar books being marketed?
  • Are there niche media outlets that would have an interest in your book concept?
  • Do you have the contacts you may need to get endorsements or experts to be cited in the book?
  • What are the best ways to reach your target market, and what marketing and publicity tactics would have the most influence over them?

To put it simply, know what you’re getting into before you dive in. Make sure you have a viable idea based on solid facts and not just the will to write a specific book. As with any kind of writing, your book sales will be a result of marketing and publicity as much as, and often much more than, a result of the writing of the book itself.


Profile image for Jennifer Mattern

Jennifer Mattern is a professional blogger, freelance business writer, consultant, and indie author. She runs numerous websites & blogs including All Freelance Writing, Freelance Writing Pros, NakedPR, and Kiss My Biz.

Jenn has 25 years' experience as a professional writer and editor and over 20 years' experience in marketing and PR (working heavily in digital PR, online marketing, social media, SEO, new media, and thought leadership publication). She also has 19 years' professional blogging and web publishing experience (including web development) and around 18 years of experience as an indie author / publisher.

Jenn also writes fiction under multiple pen names and is an Active member of the Horror Writers Association.

Subscribe to the All Freelance Writing newsletter to get freelance writing updates from Jenn in your inbox.

3 thoughts on “Book Marketing Begins Before You Write Your Book”

  1. Jenn, it would be very generous if you could kindly mention some of the ways and resources to get started with

    • I’m not sure what you mean. The post is about market research, and already features a list of specific things you should be looking into before writing your book. If you mean marketing tactics rather than marketing research, check the first link below. The second link below has a marketing plan outline you can use as well.

      I hope that helps!


Leave a Comment