If you plan to write a book or are currently underway with one, you may think that your work is finished when the manuscript is complete and professionally edited. But as every book publicist and marketer will remind you, there is much to plan and do for a book launch. Book promotion programs always have required author involvement, and with today's intense competition, it has only become more crucial. If you aren't already doing it, make sure to be building your social media fan base, blogger connections, and professional network. They together constitute your author platform that's needed.

Virtually all successful book marketing campaigns include outreach to the media in hopes of receiving coverage. While a few internet gadflies have questioned the need for traditional publicity campaigns in the digital age, nearly everyone with industry experience understands their importance. Podcasts these days are outpacing radio for important audio interviews, but TV appearances continue to be valuable, and all are posted on online video-sharing platforms. The objective is to align your appearances with your target audience for the book. So, there is a strategy involved in selecting the media to pitch. 

Savvy authors know how well they do (or don't do) in front of an audience or while being interviewed. If either isn't your strong suit, there's no shame in media or public speaking training. Because you'll need to be the face of your book, you must appear in public, and if you don't do well, audiences won't respond. Even if you have experience, training can help you improve and smooth out your performance while avoiding common mistakes. When expectations are high, and the competition is fierce, you always want to be at your best. Good interviews guests also are asked back.

There was a time when a successful author might choose to skip having a website, but those days are long gone. Today everyone checks things online, and you need an author website that includes your book. Make sure to work with a qualified web designer, ideally one who already has experience working with authors. Don't go crazy adding content – too much can make a poor impression. Check other author websites to see what you need. A bio, your picture, and a page about your book are must-haves. You'll also want to post links to your social media and any media coverage, including favorable reviews.