An excellent primer, but in need of an update.
William Hertling’s book is a wonderful, systematic and focused approach to book marketing for self-published authors. “Indie & Small Press Book Marketing” makes an easy-to-follow path in the maze that is book marketing, but it is not all-inclusive, and due to not having an update in over two years, is also a little out of date.
I really wanted to give the book five stars. I enjoyed the banter of the text, and the simplified formulas for making sense of sales figures, however, the lack of mention of any platform beyond Amazon, LinkedIn, or Goodreads (nothing on LibraryThing, Shelfari, Smashwords, for example) as a venue for marketing was a little disappointing. I was also looking for more tips on how to find industry “influencers”, either through directories like “The Indie View”, or mentioning other large book sites, such as Shelfari, Book Riot, etc.
In addition, despite the title of the text, the book heavily leans towards self-publishing authors, as the most important tactics for gaining the initial reviews in Phase 2 require interpersonal relationships with friends and family. Book marketing practices for indie presses, as a business, are practically nonexistent, except for targeted marketing on FB or Goodreads (which I imagine has changed quite a bit since 2011). Considering the fact that I bought this as a study tool for an indie press I work for that is just starting out, I found the info lacking on that end.
However, for authors who are looking to promote their own work, this is a great, simple resource that points you in the right direction. I definitely recommend it for authors who are writing either non-fiction, or clear-cut genre fiction. Hertling has created a free tool for download on his website, a checklist, which you can check out here.