SPA Girls Podcast – EP221 – Reviving Your Backlist With Laurelin Paige

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This episode we are honored to chat with NYT Bestseller, Laurelin Paige, specifically about how we can REVIVE OUR BACKLIST (she defines backlist as a book that’s more than 12 months old).

Top tips she discussed in this podcast CRAMMED with amazing
advice:

1. Keep a calendar for the upcoming year and write in your
new releases, then pad around it with backlist titles for “working”
once a month

2. The easiest thing to recharge a book is designing a new cover – even if the old cover is good, people want to look at something new. Don’t be precious with your covers.

3. Change your mindset from traditional book marketers: lean
into the strengths that indie gives us – and that’s likely changing covers
annually

When considering her backlist, Laurelin first looks at making cover changes (for entire series ideally – if you can’t afford to do them all at once, then save up rather than doing one at a time). She tries to pair a cover change with a bookbub / freebooksy / blog tour etc – treat the book like it’s a new thing

4. Experiment with lowering the price. A sale can attract
new readers (once every six months). Always put your best book as your freebie.

Timeframe – it’s never too early to have a sale. Laurelin likes to wait to get the full price audience to see the book first, then reaches a new audience with a sale. For books in KU, she also prefers using five free days rather than a countdown deal.

5. Free Prequels – experiment with these (cliffhangery endings leading into the first book of the series) Need to be wide (can be just Nook for price matching) if you’re in KU. Can do these before AND after release. Laurelin plans prequels ahead of time.

6. REPACKAGE – especially if getting rights back from trad pubbed books, re-edit, retitle (with a note for readers), recover, always tell readers where to go to the next book.

7. Front and back matter: Laurelin has her full backlist listed in the front matter with a newsletter signup (free book monthly given away thanks to newsletter swaps with similar authors); backmatter focuses on the next step you want readers to take – ie next book.

8. Work your newsletter – send 2 / 3 times per month. Mention your other books frequently. Don’t release then forget them – people need reminding. In every newsletter feature one of your backlist.

9. Marketing is cumulative. You have to keep pushing your
backlist.

10. Consider moving in and out of KU if you have more than one book. Treat the move as a new release – do a blog tour etc.

11. Connect books in series, even if there’s no connection
for better read through (eg “Summer Reading Series”.

12. Change Titles – is there a catchier way of reaching new readers? Ask what your title tells you about the book.

13. Make your book look new in a different way. Put it in a boxed set? If wide, look at what is ranking well in the Apple charts for your genre and examine cover trends; if KU, look at Amazon.

14. Bundle with other authors – eg “Hot for the holidays” multi-author bundle

15. Don’t shy away from reworking (editing / rewriting / repackaging) existing backlist if they’re not selling

Don’t take these tips in isolation. It’s important to ask yourself the overarching question “What can I do to make people find this particular book?”

Stop focussing on release week and measuring your success (or failure!) with that. Get out of that mindset!

About Laurelin Paige

With millions of books sold worldwide, Laurelin Paige is a New York Times, Wall Street Journal and USA Today Bestselling Author. She is a sucker for a good romance and gets giddy anytime there’s kissing, much to the embarrassment of her three daughters. Her husband doesn’t seem to complain, however. When she isn’t reading or writing sexy stories, she’s probably singing, watching Killing Eve, or dreaming of Michael Fassbender. She’s also a proud member of Mensa International though she doesn’t do anything with the organization except use it as material for her bio.

https://laurelinpaige.com/

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