In the past two months, the world has changed as the COVID-19 outbreak has spread onto every corner and impacted nearly every business. And, as a result of restricted movement, the book industry has seen a surge in sales: every week since the outbreak, sales have been up.
With more people at home, there is greater appetite for at home entertainment like reading. From academic essays to kids books, from self-help to fiction, readers are buying everything in sight. The Guardian reported that 31% of people in the U.K. have found themselves reading more than ever before; that percentage is even higher for 18 to 24 year olds. At the same time, U.S. book sales have increased by 14%.
One area has been particularly buoyed by this surge in reading: online book sales. Fox Business reported that online book sales have surged by a whooping 777%, which can only mean one thing: writers, now is the time to publish that novel!
We asked one of the world’s top book marketing experts to weigh in on the situation. Michael Beas, founder and CEO of eBook Marketing, and Atlas Elite Partner said “Aspiring writers, self publishers and veteran authors should all take this time to write, publish and promote their passion projects. If there was ever a time to make it happen, now is it!”
Having helped thousands of authors obtain press and rise to the top of the bestseller list, Beas shared his expert tips for authors in a post COVID-19 world.
- Boost Your Network. Unlike the old days, when authors were beholden to publishing companies and the marketing budget bequeathed to them, today’s writers have the power to establish their own networks online. Harness the power of your favorite social networks to connect with other authors, learn more about what readers are looking for, and even bounce ideas off of your potential audience.
- Knowledge Is Power. We are all stuck at home, making it the perfect time to take advantage of online learning opportunities that empower you as an author. Beas recommends looking for courses that provide guidance in selling books on Facebook or navigating the Amazon Marketplace. Self-publishing authors should look for classes on how to grow their audience and presence on sites like Goodreads and BookBub.
- Look For Recognition. Many aspiring authors may be surprised to learn that award programs do not come to you. No, instead, you need to do your research on award programs and submit your book for consideration in a timely way. Keep in mind that many programs carry an application fee, so you may want to set aside a small budget.
As Michael says, “Now is the time for authors to take advantage of more time to write and develop or finish books in their series.”