Outside the Box: How to Market a New Christian Book

Currently a a course in miracles books for Christians is slowly gaining interest around the world, but primarily in poverty-stricken countries. The author/publisher has partners in those countries translating and publishing the book. Distribution is currently intended to be through Christian churches where each church will potentially buy one copy and share it among the congregation members. They can then individually sell each of the 14 lessons to keep the cost down.

Some of these partners may also go on speaking tours and sell copies after the talks. When necessary, the book may be laser printed and made into pamphlets. Because traditional publishers have not shown any interest in the book, the author/publisher believes that Christian organizations, evangelists, and pastors will most likely become partners. But there doesn’t address how to get the word out. Writing articles for Christian non-denominational newspapers or newsletters?

In my assessment he should make the book available in different formats according to the needs of the readers and their cultures. The formats include hardback, trade paperback, and digital. His publishing, distribution, marketing, and sales efforts need to be part of a multi-pronged approach. He needs to start by using social media to target Christians and their social media groups to start the ball rolling.

He needs to see if he can arrange an affiliate relationship with the various Christian broadcasters (CBN, e.g.), both large and small, especially those who are more likely to reach countries of interest. Rick Warren, for example, has a large reading audience for his books and might be interested in anything related to his works. An in-person meeting with him could assess such a relationship.

Speaking gigs are worthwhile ONLY if this author is directly reaching the influential people who run or are associated with the organizations and social media most likely to buy and promote his book. He could do interviews on the Christian broadcast, cable, radio, podcast shows but would need to pick the largest audiences per hour of his time and effort. Giving presentations to small group of regular people tends to be a huge expenditure of time and energy for relatively little return. It is the same for book signings. Unless he is already a magnetic celebrity who can create a mega media event by having the signing, these signings are a huge waste of his time.

When he is on radio, TV, and cable interviews, having people call in to ask him questions is a good strategy. It gets the audience involved and allows them to get to know, like, and identify with him. During the interview, he can offer to send something book-relevant and of value to anyone who requests it. This creates a tangible connection with the audience.

However, if he wants to quickly reach a very large audience, he might want to create short videos on the lessons from the book. Each online marketing video should be less than 2 minutes in length. He would place these videos on YouTube and similar video directories with the hope they will become viral marketing for him. He can offer examples of these short videos to Christian organizations and media for them to show to their followers as well as provide ways their audiences can acquire the book.

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