Book Launch Success Secret #4: Build Buzz with an Opt-In Freebie
Congratulations, you’ve written a book! Whether this is your first or your hundredth, it’s a huge accomplishment. What’s more, you have a clear vision of your message and goal, and you want your words to touch people’s lives and make a real difference in the world. But here’s the thing: if no one knows about your book, how can it achieve that level of impact?
The reality is that it can’t. And that’s why preparing for your book launch is so important. To ensure your book has maximum impact, you need to have a book release plan that gets results. In Part 4 of the Book Launch Success Secrets series, Coach Tam shares the next step in that plan: building buzz around your book launch by creating an effective opt-in freebie. If you want to launch your book to an audience that’s actually interested in what you have to offer, you won’t want to miss this step!
In this episode, you’ll also hear:
- Why a successful book launch starts with a list of people who are interested — not just a post on social media
- 3 reasons you need an opt-in freebie for your book launch
- 4 tips to create an effective opt-in freebie
Be sure to read all the way to the end for a link to the FREE training to help you choose which type of opt-in freebie to offer your audience!
Last time, we talked about the importance of a book description, the right categories, and keywords in driving book launch success. By including relevant keywords that potential readers are actually searching for, you can increase the likelihood that your book will come up in their search results when they’re looking for something new to read. Additionally, by carefully choosing appropriate categories for your book and tailoring your book description to speak to those interests, you can ensure that your book reaches and appeals to readers who are actually interested in your genre or topic.
If you missed that episode of this series, be sure to check it out to learn more about optimizing these key elements of your book marketing strategy so you can take your book launch to the next level.
Now, let’s get on to Book Launch Success Secret #4, which is all about building buzz.
How to Build Buzz for Your Book
One of the first things you should think about when it comes to building buzz around your book is offering an opt-in freebie. This is a piece of content — like a short e-book, worksheet, cheat sheet, or video — that you give away for free in exchange for your ideal audience’s email addresses.
So why do you need one? Well, as you’ve probably heard, when it comes to launching a new book, the money is in the list. That means in order for your book launch to be successful, you need a list of people who are interested in what you’re offering.
Don’t just rely on random social media posts. Algorithms don’t always work in our favor, and you don’t want to have everything hinging on a live book launch event that’s packed with family and friends who want to support you but aren’t really the target audience for your book. Yes, of course you want sales, but you don’t want just any sale — you want the people you’ve been called to reach to buy your book and be impacted by its message. This is about partnering with that audience and God to create the transformation you are called to make. But you can only reach that audience with an effective strategy.
An opt-in freebie is a powerful tool, because it allows you to capture leads and start building relationships with potential readers long before your book is even released. You see, the best way to have a successful book launch and build a lasting relationship with your target audience that leads to sales beyond the book is to provide value up front. And a great way to do that is with an opt-in freebie.
But if you’re going to offer an opt-in freebie, it’s got to be something that your audience actually wants, something they will be willing to trade their email address for. Otherwise, either A) they won’t give you their email address at all, or B) you’ll end up with a list of people who aren’t really interested in what you have to say.
3 Reasons You Need an Opt-In Freebie for Your Book Launch
Before we talk about how to put together your opt-in freebie, let’s get clear about why you need it in the first place. There are three big reasons:
- It helps build anticipation for your launch. When you have an opt-in freebie that your audience actually wants, they’re going to be excited about your book launch and eagerly awaiting the day when they can finally get their hands on your book. Your opt-in freebie has a strategic purpose: to build anticipation and get people excited about your book long before it even hits the shelves.
- It helps spread the word about your book. Imagine you provide a freebie to your ideal audience, and they’re so impressed by what you have to offer that they share that freebie with their family and friends. This is a great way to spread the word about your upcoming book launch. The more people who know about your book, the more likely people will buy it.
- It helps build relationships with potential readers. This is a relationship, not just a sale. Offering a freebie is a great way to lay that foundation with potential readers, because when they opt in to receive your freebie, you have their information and can stay in contact with them. Not only can you send them news and developments, but you can also continue providing value to them leading up to the launch. And if they like what they’re seeing because it enhances their life — either by entertaining or educating them — they’re much more likely to be paying customers when the book launches.
That relationship is key, because it’s what will encourage people to stick around even after the book launch. Once you have that initial relationship established, it will only get easier to convert them to paying customers as you unveil additional books, products, and programs.
How to Create an Opt-In Freebie Your Audience Wants
That’s the big question, isn’t it — how do you create something that your audience actually wants? Because in reality, you don’t want to create just anything. You want to create the right thing that will draw the right people in.
So here are four things to keep in mind as you create your opt-in freebie.
Make it stand out from the crowd.
There are lots of books out there. If you want yours to be successful, you need to give potential readers a reason to choose your book over the others and provide their email address ahead of time.
So ask yourself: what can you offer that person that no one else can? What unique idea or insight can you provide? And how can you over deliver so much that they won’t believe they’re getting it all for free? You want them to think, “Wow, if I got all this for free, I can’t wait to see what’s in store for me when I actually buy the book!” Think of your opt-in freebie as a preview of how awesome you are to convince them in advance that your book is worth buying.
Think about your target audience.
When you’re creating that opt-in freebie, it’s important to think about who your target audience is. What type of information would they actually find valuable? Too often, authors approach their freebie (also known as a lead magnet) only thinking about what they want to share. But that doesn’t always tell you what your audience will find valuable.
As an author, you’re passionate about what you want to say and what you want your readers to take away. And that’s important! But the first step is to make sure that you’re providing something the audience finds valuable. What would help them solve a problem they’re currently facing? In other words, what are their pain points? What are their goals?
Once you know this, you can start creating content that will address those needs and help them achieve those goals. And this applies to fiction as well as nonfiction. For example, if your book is a romance, the person buying that book likely wants to escape into a more romantic place. That book is filling a gap in their life by allowing them to imagine a different world where they’re receiving the love they’ve always wanted. That’s the problem you’re solving for them.
So how can you tap into your audience’s problems or goals with your opt-in freebie? How can you create something that complements your book and that they’re actually interested in? Answering these questions will help you to come up with ideas for opt-in freebies that will actually be helpful and valuable to your target audience.
Make it visually appealing.
Tools like Microsoft Word and Google Docs are awesome. They’re easy to use and they get the job done. But this isn’t the time to just “get the job done” — you need to impress. You need to convince people that you’re the author they need in their life, that you have the answer to their questions and solutions to their problems.
Now, if you’ve already published bestsellers and your name is already known around the world, people are a little more forgiving. But when you’re an up-and-coming, newly emerging author, you’re operating at a deficit. That means you need to over deliver.
Remember, people are visual creatures. Even though the focus of your opt-in freebie is the quality of the content — the words — the visual component (and audio and video, if that applies) is just as important.
If your freebie looks good, people will be more likely to actually read it, hold onto it, and share it with others. But if it looks like you threw something together at the last minute, they’ll likely scroll past or exit quickly. It won’t have the impact you want. In fact, it can actually work against you if you put something out there that doesn’t do a good job of representing your brand.
Keep it short and sweet.
People are busy. As great as it is for them to get lots of valuable information, there is a limit. Most people aren’t going to read a 20- or 50-page ebook when they’re just getting to know you.
Whether it’s a cold audience that doesn’t know you at all or a slightly warm audience that may have heard about you but still has a fairly new relationship with your work, don’t ask them to make such a huge commitment right away. Yes, it’s free, but it’s still an exchange of time.
How can you give them something high in quality but not too high in quantity? A shorter opt-in freebie that’s chock full of helpful information is going to be more effective than a longer one that doesn’t really say much. People love when you can make things simple and easy to understand. So how can you make your opt-in freebie clear, concise, and compelling? A great rule of thumb is to keep it around 10 pages or less, but if you can get your message across in even fewer pages, that’s even better!
Free Training: Choose the Right Opt-In Freebie
Creating an opt-in freebie is a great way to grow your email list and start building relationships with potential readers long before your book is released. But it’s crucial that you come up with a concept that is both unique and engaging, that keeps your target audience in mind and ties into the book you are launching.
Whether it be a free template, a guide, a checklist, a tutorial, or some other type of resource, the most important thing is that it truly benefits your target audience. Then, when you have the right freebie in place, you’ll have taken one of your first big steps towards launching a successful book.
Not sure what type of opt-in freebie is best for your audience? We’ve got you covered! We’ve put together a free training specifically tailored to Christian authors. So if you’re ready to unlock your audience’s full potential, click here to get started creating your opt-in freebie today!
Then join us again next time for Book Launch Success Secret #5.
My name is Tamara “Coach Tam” Jackson and I am a published author, Facebook© Certified Digital Marketer, host of the Top 100 Publishing Secrets podcast, and founder of The Christian Authors Network (C.A.N.) Facebook© community. I specialize in helping mission-driven authors, coaches, and entrepreneurs increase their exposure, impact, and income through strategic self-publishing and digital media appearances. Just say yes and we will work together to attract a tribe of loyal followers that 1) “get you”, 2) love what you do, and 3) are happy to invest in your book, business, cause, or movement. Plus, we will accomplish all of this without fake, salesy, sleazy, or manipulative tactics. Yes you CAN write, publish, and profit in a way that honors God; join the community today at https://christianauthors.net/fbgroup.
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