Are Hybrid Publishers All They Are Cracked Up to Be?

The day you've been waiting for has arrived. Your book is published and listed on Amazon.

The Hybrid Publisher you hired did all they said they would do …. to a point.

You've been checking your numbers, but the same position on Amazon is frozen in time. The numbers are not moving at all.

Then they move, but in the wrong direction.

This is NOT what you expected. The publisher said they would market your book, but you come to find out what they consider marketing and what you consider marketing are apples and oranges.

This happens to a great many authors. Lots of effort goes into getting the book done, hiring what they believe is the right publishing company, and waiting and waiting and waiting.

You had an expectation of what it meant for the publisher to market your book, but you're not seeing any results. So you, the author, take control. You decide you are going to market by telling a few friends, posting on your Facebook wall or tweeting once or twice about your book. Still nothing.

Crickets

The fact is, most publishers do nowhere near the marketing that needs to happen. They may send out a media release, send a broadcast email to a portion of their email list, and post a few tweets, but beyond that, you're on your own.

If you do nothing, you will hear the ever feared sound of crickets.

Sure, you were told by the high-bred self-publishing company that the company’s marketing team would market your book, but you come to find out what “marketing the book” means to you and what it means to the company you chose for publishing your “baby” are two different things.

What is a Hybrid Publisher?

Hybrid publishers combine aspects of traditional publishing and self-publishing. Yet, even with knowing that Hybrid Publishers are a combination of various aspects of publishing , including the marketing, there are a ton of gray areas.

For a more in-depth look at what a Hybrid Publisher is and what they do, Jane Friedman gives a great perspective in her post What is a Hybrid Publisher?

“It is challenging to define what such companies have in common. They have extremely varied business models, methods of working with writers, and approaches to marketing and distribution.” Jane explains.

Going with a Hybrid Publisher gives you the freedom to get your book to market a lot faster than with a traditional publisher. Yet, there are a number of factors to consider when doing so including your costs, turnaround time, quality of delivered work, reputation of the company, do you keep all profits once you pay the company and customer care.

Before jumping in bed with a Hybrid Publisher, do your homework.

YOU Still Have to Market

Regardless of who publishes your book,  you will likely be the one to do most of the marketing. Below are five simple things you can incorporate into your overall marketing.

  1. Leverage on Reputable Book Promotion Sites

There are countless sites where you can promote your books for free. You simply submit the information to the site and in many cases, that’s it. In other cases, you may need to send a copy of the book in electronic format to a specific person.

  1. Guest Blog Posting Campaign aka Blog Tour

Blog tours are, by far, one of the best ways to gain visibility for you and your books. In a recent post, I go into a lot of detail on how this is done. In essence, you find blogs that have a similar readership as those who would enjoy your book. You contact the blog owner about you writing for their blog. The fastest way to get a yes is to have a lot of content readily available online already. This is why having your own blog, and writing on a consistent basis is a great idea. When a blog owner can do a quick search and find a lot of great content already published by you, their risk to having you write for them is minimized. The less risk for them, the better.

Learn all about Blog Tours with my Kindle Book – Blog Book Tours.

  1. Reviews

Books need reviews. It’s as simple as that. Reviews sell books. To not have reviews amounts to losing sales. Vying for the book buyer’s attention has become very competitive. One way to get through to the buyer is with lots of reviews. Make getting reviews a part of your overall marketing. It can be as simple as asking people to leave a review once they read your book. However, you can figure that for every ten people who say they will leave a review, two will actually do so. As with most things, it’s a numbers game. Lots of yeses will result in a few reviews.

  1. Develop your social media outreach

One of the greatest advantages for authors today is the ability to reach a global market by way of various social media channels. As with anything, you have to be consistent in posting. Whether it be a daily post on your Facebook wall, several tweets throughout the day, articles on LinkedIn, or YouTube videos, social media is a must do.

  1. Engage and Leave Comments on Blogs and Forums

A great way to gain visibility for you, as an authority, is to leave comments on blogs and forums. Make sure your comments are more than, “Nice post.” Put some thought into what you’re writing, add value and do NOT promote your own stuff in the post. If you add value, often people will search you out.

One of the worst offenses when leaving comments on blogs is to blatantly promote your own site, blog or books. As with anything, create value.

The more consistent you are with marketing your books, the better. It’s definitely more than a one and done scenerio. You have to make marketing a part of what you do day in and day out. When you do, sales definitely increase as do other opportunities for you, the author.

Report Shows You How

Looking for proven ways to market your book? Check out my FREE report – Hit #1 On Amazon. There are lots of great strategies on exactly what you can do to easily, simply and quickly market your book.

Click here.

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Save

Comments

  1. Thank you for the great post, Kathleen!

    Wonderful tips.
    Have a great day,

    Gaétane

  2. Great tips! Another 2: ask book reviewers to review your book and post it on their sites. And use your email list!

  3. Kathleen …

    I’m of the opinion that attaching myself to your training/mentoring/knowledge-base is one of the smartest things I’ve done lately for author Success. The Links you shared in this post lead me to several “invaluable helps” for publishing and marketing.

    Thanks a bunch!

  4. Very interesting and will come in handy when and if I ever get my book published.

    • Kathleen Gage says:

      I try to keep the information timely regardless of when your book is published.

  5. It’s good that authors know what they’re getting into, but I’m not sure why you’re targeting only hybrid publishers here. Even traditional publishers fails to do a great deal of marketing for authors these days. It is a given for all authors, no matter how they choose to publish (Indie, traditional or hybrid) that they will have to do the lion’s share of the marketing of their work. Otherwise, nice post!

    • Kathleen Gage says:

      You are correct Linore. I have written about the illusion authors have around traditional publishers as well… in other blog posts. Here is one. http://www.powerupforprofits.com/2017/05/what-every-author-must-do-to-sell-books.html

      Even when the author is not the one to do the actual marketing tasks, they need to know what is involved.

      Thanks for bringing to light that it’s not just for high-bred publishing, but virtually all publishing choices.

      • Thanks @Linore, you read my mind. Hybrids I’ve worked with have been straight up about what they will and will not do and I didn’t walk into anything blind. I know romance authors who are TONS more famous than me that are doing tons of marketing all on their own. I didn’t think it meant that the hybrid wasn’t doing ‘their share’ but that I was contributing ‘my share’ because we were working together as a team!

        • Kathleen Gage says:

          Thanks for your input Carrie. The challenge I see is that many authors are told, “We do some marketing for you,” but never inquire as to what that is. Or even if they are told what it includes, they are so excited about their book being published, they don’t listen to what has been said.

          Even with others marketing for you, the most successful authors get involved.