I don’t know where this myth started, but I see it all the time. “Oh, you shouldn’t publish this month or that month.”
Because someone’s book didn’t do well? Did they have a marketing plan that accommodated the time of year or did they just release it and go “well it’s a bad month.”
There isn’t a bad time to publish a book, but there are things you have to have in place to make it a good month. I will list a few things for you to consider when you go to publish, and you can decide if it’s worth the effort or not.
Are you promo stacking? It is better to advertise over the course of a few weeks, keeping your rank consistent than to fight for attention on a single day.
Do you have a street team that helps promote your book? People/readers get tired of seeing you toot your horn, use a street team to get word of mouth working for you.
Valentine’s Day (Feb. 14th)
There’s a surge of romance books published in the two weeks prior to the 14th, and many fight to have their books released on the 14th itself. One thing I noticed about this time of year, at least on Amazon, is that there’s a lag on when you hit publish and your book officially being available.
Utilize the preorder option, those seem to work correctly.
Why does your book need to be a New Release on the 14th? Why not have it up and available in January and book promos those first two weeks of February so your book keeps good traction?
Summer is when routines become disrupted. Kids are out of school. Families go on vacations. People aren’t fixated on their computers. It makes some promos less effective, especially if you’re targeting only a single promo day versus promo stacking over the course of a week.
You may very well have to remind people multiple times. Use the resend feature consistently in your newsletters.
Black Friday to Christmas is a hard time for indies. It’s not impossible to have a good month, but it takes realizing that traditional publishers jack up FB ads and AMS keyword fees to insane levels.
Don’t forget to take advantage of Cyber Monday, Small Business Saturday, Black Friday and more. Consider running a promo through your website with FB ads pointing people to it (Signed Copies make great gifts), remind your newsletter and offer bundles, etc. Maybe order paperback copies of your book before it goes live. Get creative and use the holiday buying season to your advantage.
Promos for Christmas time book up fast, so look in October about what the earliest you can submit for a spot with places like ENT, Pretty Hot, Book Rebel, etc. If you wait until November, you will find out that these really reflect the early bird mentality.
Don’t discount the after Christmas push. A lot of potential readers have gotten their Kindles, Kobo Readers, new phones. With a good “ad copy” you might convert those new readers into life-long fans.
If you haven’t figured it out, the only bad time is a badly planned time. You can’t just release a book and hope for the best. There are thousands of other authors who have figured out that approach doesn’t work, and what separates them from the countless others releasing books at the same time is a simple, effectiveness trial-and-error marketing plan built by networking with similar authors and finding out what works for them in the budget they have.
Don’t be afraid to call in those favors from other authors you’ve networked with and ask your friends and family to share your posts.