Why should I have to work harder than my publisher? I finished writing the manuscript, created my Facebook Page and website. I did my part. The rest of the work is the publisher's job. This is the notion that most first-time authors have about the publishing industry. It's unfortunate that they have to learn once they are disappointed with their first royalty check. Don't feel that you're doomed if you are in that situation. It took 18 months for the first Chicken Soup for the Soul book to get on the New York Times bestseller list. So, it's never too late to get started. However, it's better to get off on the right foot.

If you are a self-published author, it is even more important for you to be involved in your book project. Most authors don't have big budgets. So, hiring a publicist may not be cost effective. You also run the risk of hiring a publicist that doesn't deliver the type of results that meet your expectations.

It is common for first-time authors to forgo the responsibility of publicity. What these authors fail to realize is that publishers only devote a certain amount of time to each book. If you're the first author with a new publisher or a bestselling author with any publisher, then your book will probably get more attention than the norm. However, you are likely to be the "average author" which means that a finished manuscript and website isn't going to be enough. Do you want to be a bestselling author? Well, you need to prove it in your marketing efforts.

How much are you willing to pay for publicity? Don't answer that question because you shouldn't need to pay for it at all. For example, I know a lot of authors who pay for book reviews. Wouldn't it be better to not pay for a book review and get even more publicity than what a paid book review may give you?

You can send your book to Publisher's Weekly, New York Times, USA Today, or any national or regional media outlet that does book reviews. Send as many review copies as possible. Your chances of getting a rainfall of book sales is going to be far greater from a media outlet who wrote you a review than from a paid book review. I'm not against paid book reviews. They are probably best suited for self-published authors since most of the big media outlets don't review those type of books. However, if you're on a budget, then there is not a better way to get publicity while saving yourself money.

Is it possible to send out 25 review copies to media outlets and not get back one review? It is. Although, you could pay for one and risk getting an unfavorable review. Is that possible? Absolutely. Fortunately, the same can't be said about national media outlets. They focus on recommending great books to their readers. So, if your book sucks, you don't have to worry about them mentioning it unless you're a celebrity author (in which such a review could put a dent in your career).

Consider this: a book review can range anywhere from $100-$500 versus sending out 25 review copies of your book for $4 each (including bubble mailer and media mail shipping with tracking). Which is the more sensible option?

Author's Bio: 

Kallen Diggs is a business coach, career strategist, and author of Reaching The Finish Line. Since the Great Recession, he has helped over 2,000 people reach the finish line. For more information and to get his free white paper - Save Up to 75%: What They Don't Want You to Know. Visit www.reachingthefinishline.com