What to Do On Your Book Launch Day

Carol Tice

Pocket Small Business Owner's Guide to Starting on a Shoestring 9781621532392

Well, today’s the day! My first solo-byline print book, The Pocket Small Business Owner’s Guide to Starting Your Business on a Shoestring, is out.

With a traditional print book, it’s a long road to this day.

This particular trail started about 18 months ago, when I got an email from a publisher looking for a new title in their “Dummies”-type small business guidebook series.

In April 2012, I turned in my draft. It’s definitely hard to wait such a long time to see 200+ pages of my writing see the light of day.

The past month, I’ve been devoting all the time I can to promoting the book. The book site is up. There’s a Twitter handle. I’ve got business cards, and a conference I’m just back from where I had a chance to talk it up.

Last week, books arrived in the warehouse. And today, the book is officially on sale.

As a busy mom of a couple of tweens with a freelance career and a blog and writer community to run…I’m as ready as I was able to get.

What I’ve learned about book marketing

I learned some hard lessons on my first print book, How They Started. I counted on my publisher to plug the book way too much, and the result was that sales were disappointing.

This time, I dove in and started cranking. One book review is already up, thanks to my efforts.

What are my takeaways from this round of book marketing? Here are the three highlights:


I’d say my big lesson is to subscribe to some book-marketing blogs, take trainings, and ask around my network for what to do. I got great referrals for guest post sites as well as new marketing tips I hadn’t thought of, like building a Wikipedia page.

And I only have those business cards because of an in-person training I took two weeks ago (had to order them on a rush!). Some book-marketing activities only take a minute or two to do, so the more techniques you know, the better your options.


After writing madly for weeks, a blogstorm of at least a dozen guest posts should go down today, some of them on widely popular blogs, with more posts and podcasts going up through the rest of this week.

More requests for guest posts are still rolling in and I still have a list of a few big business sites that are wide-open for contributions that I plan to hit, so I expect there will be a steady stream of additional posts for the rest of this month.


I’m holding a launch party at the co-working place where I spend much of my summers. Making a cake that looks like my book cover! Just because I can, and it’ll be funny.

Shoestring Startup book cover on a cake

You thought I was joking? I wasn’t…behold the book-cover cake!

Also, I discovered that if we take some high-res pictures of the launch party, my local city lifestyle magazine will print them in the fall issue. Documenting the event gives you another marketing opportunity, so that’s just another good reason to have a launch party.

Instead of a boring book talk, I’ll be offering free business coaching on how to save money to attendees, in keeping with the book’s theme. I’m excited to break from the usual format and do something more freewheeling and hopefully useful to participants.

Most of all, I think it’s just time to take a day to let it sink in. I wrote a traditional book. All by myself. No one can ever take that away.

Tomorrow, I can start thinking about what’s next. Where does this new milestone lead me? What other marketing activities could I do in the coming weeks to keep momentum going?

Today, though, my whole plan is to smile and enjoy — and respond to commenters on guest posts.

How have you celebrated publication days? Leave a comment and share.



  1. MD Finley

    I will certainly buy the book as soon as possible! I look forward to a great read. I have self published one book and am almost ready to launch my second. Great to meet a fellow author!

  2. Emma Ramsay

    This is some very helpful advice. I think it is very common for people to under estimate what has to be done when launching a new book.

    I work for a PR company and we recently helped with a management consultancy book launch and managed to get a lot of publicity for them. If you would like to see what we did please visit our website: http://www.kelsopr.com/case-study-pr-business-book

  3. Kayleen

    Love the ideas of creating a Wikipedia page. Could you write about how to do that? I also want to create book trailers for my books. Do you think it’s worth doing if a book has been out fora year? Thanks and congrats on your book.

    • Carol Tice

      I do have a book trailer which we got done just in time for opening day…and when I say we I of course mean my husband. 😉

      You can check mine out here: http://shoestringstartupguide.com/book-trailer

      The SEO of putting that on youtube with some key words I think is worth it at any point. YouTube is I believe the 2nd most-searched engine after Google…so worth getting found there.

      I’m just about to do the Wikipedia page shortly, so if there’s anything fascinating there I’ll post about it. I signed up to be a creator on there, but I gather it works better if the book is already out when you build the page, so I waited. Will try to get it done this week.

      Also they don’t want you doing your own page about yourself, so apparently I have to have my admin do that. I’m told it’s worth it for the SEO value just because Wikipedia is so busy, so I’m going to give it a try.

  4. David Gillaspie

    Hi Carol,

    Great meeting you in Portland yesterday. And now an even bigger day.

    I hope you’re taking a victory lap for your book.

    Thank you for breakfast and great post research.


    • Carol Tice

      Hi David —

      Was a pleasure to meet you as well! I LOVE my subscriber meetups and have more planned.

      Send me a link if you post photos from it.

      Thanks for the good wishes!

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