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The No-Cost Book Marketing Guide For Self-Publishers

June 07, 2022 (Last Updated June 20, 2022)

Marcy G.

Come up with an amazing story line? Check. Translate that idea onto published paper with 48 Hour Books? Check. Pursue the necessity of self-published book marketing to accentuate author reputation and sales? If your answer is anything other than 'check,' then there’s a good chance money is your biggest barrier from making that happen. However, though book marketing can indeed be quite expensive for those without deep pockets, it doesn’t mean you can’t still harvest those same fruitful results even with little to no budget. Because of that, below are several book marketing avenues you can begin utilizing to not just embrace how to market a self-published book on a budget, but do so while ensuring you can attain those high-performing results you deserve.


Low to No-Cost Book Marketing Options You Can Start Today


ü  Leverage The Power Of Social Media

In the competitive world of self-published book marketing, optimizing social media content is one of the most effective (and free!) avenues you can take. All in all, social media platforms like Facebook, TikTok, Twitter, and Instagram have become dominating outlets for effective book marketing for the mere fact that billions -yes, billions- of people check-in across the board every single day. Facebook alone pulled in 1.93B users, with millions being active daily. So, if you genuinely want to optimize how to market a self-published book with little to no cost, head over to the corner of the internet where your readers likely spend most of their time – on social media.


PS: As a quick sidebar, you can enhance your target audience outreach by creating things like Facebook groups to draw in the right people. This is also wonderful for hosting free live engagement and answering questions on a personable level. Just be careful that when posting for book marketing purposes that you do not recycle old content down to the last letter. According to HubSpot statistics, 21% of people will unfollow someone on social media if they are bombarded with repetitive content. So, get creative with your approaches and switch things up a bit to successfully grow a loyal community fan base.


ü  Collaborate/Network With Other Authors

Another wonderful way to market a self-published book is by collaborating with other authors to form a mutually beneficial marketing strategy. For example, if there is a new self-publishing author with a solid following in a specific market that you have yet to tap into, and vice versa, you can both benefit from marketing each other to your own following to build each other up. Keep in mind that if you reach out to well-established authors, they will likely require a fee since they do not need exposure in reciprocation. Instead, the goal should be to connect with authors who are in the same genre and hold a similar status as you to solidify that win-win book-marketing outcome.


ü  Offer Giveaways to Gain Reviews

One of the simplest/easiest things you can do to help build your reputation as an author and market a self-published book is doing a giveaway. Bonus points if it is a signed giveaway. No, you will not gain profit from doing this, but you will, in turn, gain something so much more valuable in these early stages, which is a positive review foundation that can domino effect more sales down the line. Now, you can do these giveaways in various ways, but if you want to reach the most people in your target audience, use social media for announcing. During this process, also be sure to kindly ask those who receive a book to leave honest reviews either on a preferred social platform, on your website, or other places like Google reviews. Remember, those 5-stars will add up over time, and people love free things!


ü  Blog About It

Assuming you have a website already, be sure to take advantage of the free book marketing opportunity of blogging. Believe it or not, blogging is a powerhouse way to generate organic website exposure. And you guessed it, more organic exposure can quickly equate to book sales. That said, publishing quality and informative content on a UX website is ideal, but it can get lost in the vast digital space without SEO involved.


Search Engine Optimization (SEO) includes fundamental practices that optimize things like blog posts so they rank higher in search engines. SERPs like Google to scope out quality-rich content to feature on their first-page results, allowing you to become exposed to a much larger audience right off the bat. Furthermore, blogs can also be fundamental for supporting social media marketing efforts, as they can connect all your marketing platforms together via links, rank you higher on social media arenas, and can boost your chances of more dynamic exposure that translates into genuine fans across all omni-channels.


ü  Create A Goodreads AND BookPub Profile

Want the most exposure possible on a shoestring budget? Then consider creating an author profile on both Goodreads and BookPub. In general, profiles like these will all harmonically work with you on every other book marketing effort that you do. The best part is that once your profile(s) are created, the self-published book marketing results will cost you little to no energy to attain. For instance, people who follow you will get automatic updates on things like pre-orders and new releases. And on BookPub, they will get instant access to your personal website since you can link that in your profile. i.e., more opportunities for SEO boosting, sales, and book marketing without lifting a finger or spending tons on advertising.


In short, Goodreads and BookPub profiles are excellent for the features above and also because you are outreaching your name and book(s) on well-known platforms (with multi-million subscribers) - which can equate to higher exposure for simply being there and can thus spark interest within audiences you may not have targeted before. Furthermore, your name on these platforms inadvertently builds trust, establishes authenticity, and can ultimately lead to your reputation thriving.


Summary – It Doesn’t Take Millions; It Takes Strategy

In summary, self-published book marketing and understanding how to market a self-published book is something that every new or seasoned author can excel at, regardless of what their book marketing budget entails. In the end, it doesn't take millions in expendable income to develop a strong community fan base that enables you to achieve your own version of success as an author. All it takes is a bit of strategic planning, some marketing analysis, and knowing how to use that information to reach out to your target audiences in the most cost-effective ways possible. And above all else, having the right self-publishing partner on your side, supporting you every step of the way as you navigate towards a sustainable authoring career.

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Sign up for the 48 Hour Books newsletter to learn how to self-publish your book — and get it printed faster with us than anywhere else.


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