For authors, the idea of marketing a book can be a daunting or nerve-wracking experience. The good news that we like to tell our authors is that the hard work is already done. MSP’s marketing philosophy is firmly committed to the idea that good writing is the best marketing. In one sense, a good story will sell itself, and having completed a good story, an author has already won half the battle.
Marketing is simply the process of helping readers find this story in a busy, noisy world. This mentality undergirds all our strategies and is the idea we like to share with authors. While our publishing philosophy is author-centric, our marketing philosophy is reader-centric. We believe sales come from helping readers find good books—not from having the biggest billboard.
We are huge believers in the power of social media and networking when used for quality marketing, and we encourage authors to be active in the communities of their genre. With that said, we also believe there is a balance to be found for each individual. More is not always better in marketing. Each author should find his own comfort level in the amount of marketing he pursues. Some authors take to social media like a duck to water; some prefer a more reclusive lifestyle. At MSP we encourage and help our authors achieve the marketing commitment that fits their needs. At the end of the day, it is their writing that will sell the book.
MSP’s marketing strategy has a long term outlook for both a book and its author. Large publishers frequently use the sales during the first two weeks after a book’s release to determine whether the book is a financial success. We use a different set of benchmarks. If a book recoups its production costs within a one year period, we consider it successful. This acknowledges the reality that indie and small press books typically start out with low monthly sales which increase over time as word gets out about the book.
Madison Street Publishing is committed to the idea that marketing is about creating a relationship with readers, not about inundating them with advertisements. This simple philosophy springs from being lifelong readers ourselves. With any marketing decision, it is always worthwhile to think how it would affect you as a reader. In marketing, the Golden Rule may be golden in more ways than one.