Top 10 Fantasy Book Promotion Sites

This is part of the WriteZero Top 10 Book Promotion Sites Guide for Authors & Publishers

This Top 10 List covers the best book promotion sites for promoting Fantasy Books

The Top 10 – The 10 Best Fantasy Book Promotion Sites

  1. BookBub
    1. The largest and most effective book promotion site for Fantasy
      1. They have 10 to 15 million total readers, including millions of readers for Fantasy
    2. Strong for nearly all Fantasy categories
    3. YA Fantasy is a complete separate category for them, and they are very strong in that too
    4. Accept only 10% to 20% of books submitted
      1. Please make sure you only submit well polished books to them
  2. eReader News Today
    1. A very large site that has been helping authors and readers since 2010
    2. Strong for Fantasy
    3. Very reasonably priced
  3. Books Butterfly
    1. The 2nd largest Fantasy book promotion site
      1. Has 4 million readers, including nearly a million readers for Fantasy
    2. Very Strong in most Fantasy sub genres
      1. Very Strong – Epic Fantasy, Urban Fantasy, Contemporary Fantasy, Lit RPG, Contemporary Fantasy
      2. Strong – Steampunk Fantasy, Dark Fantasy, Weird Fiction, Gaslamp Fantasy, Fairy Tale Fantasy
        1. Also very strong in all Romance + Fantasy genres including Romantic Fantasy and Paranormal Romance
      3. Decently Strong – Supernatural Thriller, Witch Cozy Mystery, Supernatural Mystery, Occult Mystery, High Fantasy, Gothic Fantasy, Historical Fantasy
      4. Not Strong – Magical Realism, Time Travel, Climate Fantasy, LGBT Fantasy
      5. Not strong for YA Fantasy or for any Fantasy novels that have Young Adult or Kid protagonists
    3. Professionally designed book cover is a necessity to get accepted
    4. Disclosure: Books Butterfly is our sister company which has successfully run $1.8 million of book promotion packages
  4. Robin Reads
    1. Very strong upcoming book promotion site
    2. Strong in Fantasy
    3. Very selective and accepts less than 10% of books submitted
    4. Does well for nearly every book they run
  5. Book Barbarian
    1. A fast growing fantasy book promotion site that promotes only Fantasy and Science Fiction
    2. Good results for most authors
    3. You must have a well polished book to get accepted
  6. Book Sends
    1. A book promotion site that has been helping authors and readers since 2012
    2. Very large in size
    3. Strong in Fantasy
  7. FreeBooksy for promoting free fantasy books
    1. FreeBooksy and BargainBooksy are sister sites
      1. FreeBooksy promotes free books and is a Top 10 Fantasy Book Promotion site to promote free books
      2. BargainBooksy promotes $0.99 book deals and books up to $5. It is a Honorable Mention
    2. Written Word Media is the company that runs these sites and they have been helping authors since 2011
    3. They are decently strong in Fantasy
  8. Fussy Librarian
    1. A good book promotion site that produces decent results for most authors
    2. Has specific Fantasy genres and sub genres
    3. Has very low priced promotion packages
      1. So it’s easy to try it out and see if it works for your books
  9. To Be Finalized
    1. We are evaluating the Honorable Mentions and will move the best 2 to these spots (#9 and #10)
  10. To Be Finalized
    1. We are evaluating the Honorable Mentions and will move the best 2 to these spots (#9 and #10)

We recommend these Top 10 Fantasy book promotion sites strongly

  1. An author with a good book that is well polished should do well in 7 or 8 of these 10
  2. An author with a very good book which is very thoroughly polished should do well in all 10

Next, let’s look at the honorable mentions

Honorable Mentions – Book Promotion Sites that missed the Top 10

  1. Bargain Booksy
    1. Sister site of FreeBooksy
    2. Decently strong in Fantasy
  2. Genre Pulse
    1. A good book promotion site that has low priced packages which makes it easy to check if it works for your books or not
    2. Has been helping authors since 2014
    3. Has both email subscribers and readers on Android Apps
      1. Very few other book promotion sites have readers on Android Apps so you have a shot at reaching a new set of readers who might never have seen your book before
  3. Book Gorilla
    1. Sister site of Kindle Nation Daily
    2. Your book has to be well polished to do well here
  4. Kindle Nation Daily
    1. The original Kindle Book Promotion site (since 2008/2009) and has helped tens of thousands of authors
    2. Decently strong in Fantasy

We are evaluating a lot of other Fantasy book promotion sites which did not make the Top 10 Fantasy Book Promotion Sites list

We will update this Honorable Mentions section in the near future with those fantasy book promotion sites that we think are good enough to be considered Honorable Mentions

Detailed Insight on the Top 10 Fantasy Book Promotion Sites

To Be Updated

We will, later on, add detailed insights for the Top 10 Fantasy Book Promotion Sites

Increasing Your Chances of Getting Accepted at the Top Fantasy Book Promotion Sites

Why do Fantasy book promotion sites have certain acceptance criteria?

Let’s look at the rationale behind each requirement, and why you should strive to meet these requirements

  1. Over 100 pages & No Short Stories
    1. Because readers don’t value books that are short in length and don’t value short stories and novellas
    2. Fantasy readers want books over 150 pages in length. In general, even longer is better
    3. You will sell 10 times more full length books than you will sell short stories
  2. Review Rating over 4 Stars
    1. Each store has its ‘conventions’ and ‘rules’. At Amazon, a review rating below 4 stars is the Kiss of Death
      1. There will be some Smart Alec who will mention a Stephen King book has a 3.5 star rating and still sells
      2. You are not Stephen King
      3. You need to have your book’s review rating stay over 4 stars if you want it to sell well
  3. X Number of Reviews
    1. Usually book promotion sites will have a minimum number of reviews requirement
      1. It can vary from at least one review to 10+ reviews, or even higher
      2. A few sites will take books without reviews
    2. In general – The more reviews the better your chances of getting accepted
    3. Zero reviews makes it hard to get approved. Some fantasy book promotion sites will take you
      1. However, you should keep in mind that it is usually an exception or a courtesy
      2. Zero reviews leads to slow sales and low sales
      3. Why? Zero Reviews means -> there is not a single reader on the planet willing to vouch for your book
        1. If a Fantasy Book promotion site gives you a chance, because they think you have potential
        2. Please don’t start thinking your Zero Review book is going to sell as well or as fast as a book with 10 to 50 reviews
    4. It is very important to not push too much for reviews if it risks your 4 star or higher review rating
      1. It is better to have 1 to 10 reviews and a 4+ stars review rating
      2. Than to have 40 reviews and a 3.5 star review rating
  4. Professionally Designed Book Cover
    1. This is probably the requirement that trips up authors the most
    2. Authors have an extraordinary blind spot when it comes to book covers
      1. The typical author thinks of book covers as
        1. The author’s opportunity to show how creative and artistic the author is
        2. A way to save money by making the cover themselves
        3. An opportunity to recreate their favorite scene from their book
        4. A chance to show how innovative they can be in font selection and text placement
        5. The more things you can fit into the book cover the better
        6. A Do It Yourself Project
        7. Idea being more powerful than execution
        8. The opportunity to break genre conventions and do something no one else has done before
      2. Reality is that
        1.  You are guaranteeing failure if you try to show how artistic you are by designing your book cover yourself
        2.  The worst possible place to save money is in the book cover
        3.  You should definitely not try to recreate a scene from the book on the cover
        4.  A Book Cover should have carefully chosen fonts and well thought out text placement
        5. A Cover should focus on just one key visual element
          1. In some cases you can focus on two key visual elements
        6. Only a professional book cover designer should make your cover
        7. Idea is worth nothing if it is not executed well
          1. It must result in a Book Cover that gets readers to click on the cover and go to the book page
        8. A book cover must ALWAYS stick to genre conventions
          1. Genre conventions exist for a reason
          2. Please look at the Top 100 list for any category, such as Romance
          3. All those people are bestsellers
    3. It is IMPERATIVE to hire a professional book cover designer who knows what a book cover has to achieve
      1. [Before going to the book page] A book cover has to CATCH THE EYE
      2. [Before going to the book page] A book cover has to GET THE READER TO CLICK
      3. [On the Book Page] A book cover has to SELL THE BOOK
  5. Well Edited with no spelling mistakes
    1. If readers see lots of spelling mistakes and grammatical errors in the sample they will not buy the book
    2. If the sample us great and then readers see lots of spelling mistakes and grammatical errors in the rest of the book, they will leave bad reviews
    3. You are shooting yourself in the foot if you start promoting an unpolished, unedited book
      1. The best Fantasy Book promotion sites will make sure you have a polished book before accepting it
  6. Reasonably priced
    1. Readers decide whether to buy or not to buy
    2. The price of the book should be reasonable for the amount of value the book provides
    3. Many authors start off thinking they can charge the same prices as Dean Koontz and Jeffrey Archer
      1. If you’re a new author, you have to provide some incentive to readers to pick you over established superstar authors
      2. One of the easiest ways to do that is to offer good value for money
  7. Books that are in the right category and in the right sub-categories
    1. Nearly all Fantasy book promotion sites will outright reject a book that is put into wrong categories
    2. Likewise, you are going to get a lot of rejections if you try to game the system
    3. Being in the right category is important because
      1. You must reach the right readers
      2. When your book starts selling you must show up on the right bestseller and hot new releases lists
      3. Readers are very wary of authors gaming the system
        1. If they see any signs of books being miscategorized, they don’t realize it is a mistake
        2. They think they are being tricked into buying a book that is not in one of their favorite genres
    4. Being in the right sub categories is important because
      1. The more accurate the fit with readers, the better your book will sell
      2. Most large genres (romance, fantasy, non fiction, thriller, mystery) are actually a collection of sub genres
        1. Readers in one sub genre (Cozy Mystery) don’t necessarily read books from another sub genre (Detective Mystery)
        2. Both sub categories fall within Mystery
        3. However, they are worlds apart
      3. Once the book starts selling, and starts showing up on New Release lists and Bestseller lists
        1. You must be in the right sub category – so that the right readers see it
        2. You work hard to get sales, but your book is in Steamy Romance instead of Clean Romance
        3. It starts showing up in the bestsellers list for Steamy romance
          1. At best, readers realize it’s clean and not steamy and you lose the benefit of all that visibility
          2. At worst, readers buy it and find out it’s clean and there are no ‘hot’ scenes and leave bad reviews

Basically, the top Fantasy Book Promotion Sites will have requirements which filter for books that do well

Satisfying those requirements should not be looked upon as a burden

  1. The same improvements and changes that will get you accepted into the Top Fantasy Book Promotion Sites
  2. Are the same improvements and changes which will increase your book sales, for the entire lifetime of the book
  3. Therefore, look upon all these requirements as a PERMANENT improvement in your book sales

Embrace the requirements and try and meet all of them. You will be glad you did

Fantasy Book Promotion Sites are asking you to Make The Exact Same Changes as The Changes which Improve Book Sales

Fantasy Book Promotion – Biggest Mistakes to Avoid

Often, doing well in Fantasy comes down to simply making sure you don’t make any big mistakes

  1. Know what genre and subgenre your Fantasy book is in
    1. You will have to do your Due Diligence and figure out exactly what Fantasy genre and subgenre your book is in
    2. Please don’t do guess work. The ebook stores (Amazon Kindle, B&N Nook, Apple, Kobo) each have their genres and subgenres
      1. You have to make sure you put your book in the genres and sub genres that are A PERFECT FIT for your book
    3. This is actually the biggest mistake Fantasy authors make – Putting their book in the wrong subgenre or in the wrong genre in the ebook stores
  2. Don’t fall in love with your book before it is a finished, high quality product
    1. It is incredibly important to not assume that the first draft of the first book you have ever written is a masterpiece
    2. It is even more important to Listen to the Market. The market is constantly telling you what you need to do to improve your book
  3. Get the Genres and Sub Genres right
    1. Place your Book in the right genre and subgenres at the ebook stores
    2. Promote your Book in the right genres when promoting with the top fantasy book promotion sites
    3. Have the right book genres and subgenres in the book description and title and cover
  4. Don’t expect easy success
    1. Most authors are not going to hit the jackpot with their first book
    2. Choosing shortcuts leads to long term pain
    3. It’s much better to invest in stuff that works, even if it involves hard work and patience
  5. Make sure you keep Return on Investment at a reasonable level
    1. At the beginning you might not get positive Return on Investment
    2. However, try to keep it as close to break even as possible
  6. Spend your money slowly
    1. Don’t spend all your money right at the start
    2. At the beginning you don’t even know how to spend well
  7. Make sure you keep writing new books
    1. Don’t fixate too much on your first book
    2. Falling too deeply in love with their first book is a mistake that sinks a lot of authors
    3. You must keep writing new books, and you must keep improving your writing
  8. Accept that your first book is not going to be perfect
    1. It is absolutely critical to understand that your career is A JOURNEY
    2. Your first book is not the the entire journey – it is just a beautiful first chapter
    3. Your first book is not the highlight of the story – the highlight is mostly going to be later on in the journey
  9. Have Patience
    1. Perhaps the single best quality you can cultivate as an Author is patience
  10. Stick to Genre and Sub Genre Conventions
    1. Each genre (including Fantasy) has certain conventions
      1. These ‘conventions’ are what makes that genre’s readers happy
      2. They are reading Fantasy to EXPERIENCE these exact things
      3. They’re not reading Fantasy for historical accuracy
        1. They want dragons and swords and magic and all the things that make them choose Fantasy
        2. Please be sure to give them what they want
    2. Each sub genre within Fantasy has its own conventions
      1. The more you give readers of the Fantasy sub genre what makes them happy
      2. The more they will buy your books
  11. Make sure your book is FUN to read
  12. Don’t fall in love with your book’s packaging and positioning
    1. Your book is not the book cover
    2. Your book is not the book page
    3. Don’t get attached to them
      1. If they are helping you sell your book – great
      2. If they are getting in the way of sales – eliminate them and get a book cover and book page which works
  13. Don’t drink too much of your own Kool Aid
  14. Listen to the Market
    1. Please LISTEN to the Market
    2. The Market always tells you what it wants
    3. You just have to be willing to listen
    4. Are you getting sales or not?
    5. Are you getting reviews or not?
    6. At what point in the process are you losing readers?
    7. The Marketing is always telling you what you need to do to succeed
      1. You just have to be willing to LISTEN TO THE MARKET
  15. Don’t try to kill two birds with one stone
    1. Biggest Mistake in picking Genres – Author trying to sell a book to both Fantasy and Science Fiction readers
      1. Fantasy and Science Fiction are very different categories
      2. It is almost never the case that you’ve written a book that fits in well into both categories
    2. 2nd Biggest Mistake in picking Genres – Author trying to sell a book to both adult Fantasy readers and young adult Fantasy readers
      1. Young Adult Fantasy is a very tough genre
        1. If you are a Fantasy Author
        2. Unless you want to experience Iron Maiden levels of torture
        3. Stay away from Young Adult Fantasy
      2. If you put your Adult Fantasy into YA Fantasy, not only might it not work, it will definitely scare off your adult readers
        1. Why?
        2. Because for the past decade authors have been ‘gaming the system’ by putting their books in the wrong category
        3. Readers don’t think – This book can be read by both Adult Readers and by Young Adult Readers
        4. They fear – Instead of an Epic Fantasy with Dragons and Wars I’ll get glittering, twittering Vampires

Please go over that list carefully. If you can avoid the above mistakes, your chances of success go up significantly

Top 10 Fantasy Book Promotion Sites – The Critical Importance of Picking the Right Fantasy Sub Genre

Firstly, there are a lot of different Fantasy sub genres, including

  1. Contemporary Fantasy
  2. Urban Fantasy
  3. Dark Fantasy
  4. Gaslamp Fantasy
  5. Steampunk
  6. Fairy Tale Fantasy
  7. Gothic Fantasy
  8. Grimdark Fantasy
  9. Heroic Fantasy
  10. Epic Fantasy
  11. High Fantasy
  12. Low Fantasy
  13. Magic Realism Fantasy
  14. Occult Fantasy
  15. Sword & Sorcery – Game of Thrones and Lord of the Rings
  16. Weird Fiction – think China Meiville
  17. Bangsian Fantasy
  18. Historical Fantasy
  19. LitRPG Fantasy
  20. Lost World Fantasy
  21. Hollow Earth Fantasy – think Journey to the Center of the Earth by Jules Verne
  22. Mythic Fantasy
  23. Slipstream
  24. Time Travel Fantasy

You can read up more on each Fantasy sub genre at Wikipedia. You have to be absolutely sure what sub genre you are writing in

Secondly, there are a few very important things to keep in mind

  1. Readers who love a particular Fantasy sub genre will read almost every book released in it, provided it’s good
    1. No reader ever says – there are too many good writers in the genres I like
    2. No reader ever says – I wish there were fewer good books
    3. Readers are ALWAYS looking for more good books
  2. If you write exceptionally well, then even readers from other Fantasy sub genres will read your book
    1. However, first you have to become an exceptionally good writer for your specific Fantasy sub genre
  3. Each sub genre has very specific conventions
    1. You cannot break them until you become a master writer
  4. It is much better to write a book that is FANTASTIC for a particular Fantasy sub genre
    1. Than to write one that is ‘decently good’ for each and every Fantasy sub genre
  5. There is a very big gap between the ‘best authors’ in each Fantasy sub genre, and the ‘decently good’ authors in each genre
    1. Make sure you pick a sub genre where you can become one of the very best authors
    2. 1st prize is a Cadillac and a career as an author
    3. 2nd prize is a set of steak knives

Thirdly, picking the right sub genre and sticking to it is very important

  1. Make sure you know what Fantasy sub genre you are writing in
    1. You, more than anyone else, must know exactly what Fantasy sub genre(s) you are writing in
  2. Make sure you put your book in that EXACT sub genre in the ebook stores
  3. Make sure you use that Fantasy sub genre when promoting your book
    1. At the top fantasy book promotion sites
    2. At Facebook or other marketing places you use
    3. On your blog and social media
    4. Everywhere you promote your book, you must use the right Fantasy sub genre(s)
  4. Make sure your book title, book page, book cover match the conventions for your Fantasy sub genre(s) and clearly indicate what Fantasy sub genres your book is in
    1. Please don’t make it a mystery for readers
  5. After you have settled on your sub genres, it’s great to stick with them
    1. Don’t quit too soon
    2. It takes 3 to 5 books to create a decent readership
    3. It also takes you 3 to 5 years to fully understand a Fantasy sub genre
    4. It is far more likely that you will quit too soon, than it is that you will quit too late
  6. Pick the sub genre that is right for you
    1. Make sure that you pick a sub genre that has a proven market
    2. Make sure you pick a sub genre you love writing in
    3. Then give it your best shot, and usually means being devoted to the sub genre for 3 to 10 years

As mastering a sub genre takes a long time, it’s very important to think a lot and be absolutely sure you actually want to write in that sub genre, and that you want to do well in that sub genre, and that succeeding in that sub genre actually gives the rewards you want

Becoming a Bestseller! Leveraging the Top Fantasy Book Promotion Sites to Become a Bestseller

Fantasy is a very competitive genre. That being said, some Fantasy sub genres are very small and/or not that competitive and easy to become a bestseller in

  1. Becoming a Category Bestseller in larger Fantasy categories (Epic Fantasy, Urban Fantasy, etc) is very tough
    1. Please don’t try that with your first book or with an unpolished book
    2. Please don’t try that without a large budget
  2. Becoming a Category Bestseller in smaller Fantasy categories is quite straightforward
    1. This you can take a shot at anytime
    2. Just be sure to line up some good book promotion sites
  3. Fantasy has lots of sub categories so it is quite possible to become a bestseller for a smaller sub category
    1. In fact, it is strongly recommended as Becoming a Fantasy Genre/Fantasy Sub Genre bestseller is an easy way to show readers your book is worth buying (Social Proof, Pre Selection)
    2. Additionally, the benefit applies to every single Fantasy book you ever write
  4. Becoming a New York Times Bestselling Author in Fantasy is very tough
    1. Despite there being very good Fantasy book promotion sites
    2. Despite Facebook Ads being a very viable marketing mechanism
    3. You can make things easier by promoting a Box Set. However, it is still pretty hard
  5. Getting to Top 100 in Amazon Paid Books is possible if you can get Bookbub and another 3 to 4 of the Top 10 Fantasy Book Promotion Sites
    1. In some cases, Bookbub alone has a good chance of getting you to the Top 100
    2. Leveraging Bookbub and 3 or more of – Books Butterfly, Robin Reads, eReader News Today, Book Barbarian, Book Sends – will usually ensure a Top 100 rank in the Entire Kindle Store
      1. Top 100 in all Kindle eBooks

Let’s look at each specific type of Bestseller Status you can strive for

Becoming a Category Bestseller at Amazon

To become a Category Bestseller in Fantasy, usually the number of sales required is

  1.  A very small Fantasy sub genre – 10 to 30 sales over a week
  2.  A small Fantasy sub genre – 30 to 70 sales over a week
  3.  A medium Fantasy sub genre or a small Fantasy genre – 70 to 200 sales over a week
  4.  A large Fantasy sub genre or a medium sized Fantasy genre – 100 to 300 sales over a week
  5. A large Fantasy genre – 300 to 1,000 sales over a week
  6. Very Large Fantasy genres such as Epic Fantasy – 500 to 1,500 sales over a week

Please Note: If you get all the sales in 1 to 3 days, instead of in a week, that will increase your chances of becoming a bestseller. However, do keep in mind that having a slow increase before the big spike in sales, will significantly increase your chances of Becoming a Bestseller. So it is important to have 1 or 2 Fantasy Book Promotion Sites (or Facebook Ads) running in the days leading up to your big marketing push

You need BOTH

  1. A slow gradual increase leading up to your big marketing push
    1. This slow gradual increase should generate 5 to 15 sales a day for 2 to 4 days
  2. A big marketing push that generates a LARGE number of sales within a 1 to 3 day stretch

You will almost certainly become a Category Bestseller in small, medium, and large Fantasy genres if you can get Bookbub

If you can’t get Bookbub then you can become a Category Bestseller in small and medium Fantasy genres by using a combination of as many as possible of the rest of the Top 10 Fantasy Book Promotion Sites – eReader News Today, Robin Reads, Books Butterfly, Book Barbarian, Book Sends

To become a Category Bestseller in very large Fantasy Genres you would need

  1. Bookbub as the main driver of sales
  2. 3 to 5 of – Books Butterfly, Robin Readers, eReader News Today, Book Barbarian, Book Sends

Becoming a Top 100 Bestselling Book at Amazon

This requires getting Bookbub. The process is straightforward if you can get approved by most of the Top 10 Fantasy Book Promotion Sites

  1. Firstly, you need to get a Bookbub Featured Deal promotion package
  2. Secondly, you need to get 3 or more of the remaining Top 10 Fantasy book promotion sites
    1. Books Butterfly, eReader News Today, and Robin Reads are almost must have
    2. Book Sends and Book Barbarian and very helpful
  3. Thirdly, for the days leading up to your main book promotion days, it helps to have some smaller book promotion sites
  4. Overall, your book promotion schedule could look something like
    1. Facebook Ads on all days
    2. Day 1 to 3 – smaller Fantasy book promotion sites
    3. Day 3 onwards – Books Butterflyas it has multiple day promotions with the peaks usually on Day 2 or 3 or 4
    4. Day 4 – a Top 10 book promotion site such as Book Sends
    5. Day 5 – Bookbub, Robin Reads, eReader News Today, Book Barbarian
      1. Optional – additional Top 10 Book Promotion Sites on Day 5
    6. (Optional) Day 6 – a smaller book promotion site

It’s very important to schedule and structure everything early on. Some of the Top 10 Fantasy book promotion sites have very long wait times

Becoming a New York Times Bestselling Author or an USA Today Bestselling Author

Fantasy, over the last 5 to 10 years, thanks to seismic events like Game of Thrones, has become a very big and very competitive book genre

If you are a self published author, be mindful that it requires

  1. A very well polished book
  2. A very well written book
  3. A HUGE marketing budget
  4. Sales across different book stores. It is not enough to get sales just in Amazon Kindle Store. You also have to get sales in two or more of – Apple iBooks, Barnes & Noble Nook, for paperbacks, physical book stores for paperbacks
  5. There is an element of luck/randomness
    1. So you might need to take a 2nd short or a 3rd shot

There are a few ways to make it less difficult

  1. Firstly, you can promote a Box Set instead of a standalone book
    1. A Box Set of 3 or more books of full length invokes The Box Set Effect
    2. The Box Set Effect – A Box Set sells 2 to 4 times more than a standalone book, provided they are both at the same price
    3. The Box Set Effect – A Box Set at $0.99 can sell tens of thousands to hundreds of thousands of copies
    4. The Box Set Effect – A Box Set at $0.99, if promoted properly, can sell tens of thousands of copies in a single week
      1. That figure of 10,000+, coincidentally, is around the number of sales you need to get on to the New York Times Bestsellers List and the USA Today Bestsellers List
  2. Secondly, you can collaborate with other Fantasy authors and create a Multi Author Box Set
    1. Not only does this tap into The Box Set Effect
    2. It also gives you a lot more marketing budget as the various authors can share marketing costs

While a Multi Author Box Set is very powerful, you still need very good marketing and fellow authors you can work with. Becoming a New York Times Bestselling Author in Fantasy is a difficult and challenging proposition

Finally, if you are going for Bestseller Status with a standalone book, be mindful that it requires an absolutely massive marketing budget

Improving the Results of your Fantasy Book Promotion with the Top 10 Fantasy Book Promotion Sites

Most of the Top Fantasy Book Promotion Sites are very strong in Fantasy

They will get you decent to good results even if you mess up the following points

However, to get very good to excellent results with the top Fantasy book promotion sites, it is very strongly recommended to do the following things –

  1. [Most Important] Be absolutely sure about your Fantasy Genre and your Fantasy Sub Genres
    1. Fantasy Genre – Make sure your book is actually a Fantasy Novel
    2. Fantasy Sub Genre – Pick the right Fantasy sub genres, make sure your book is promoted as the right sub genres, make sure the genres at Amazon match the book’s actual sub genres
    3. Be very clear in book cover, book title, and book description about what the Fantasy genre and sub genres are
      1. To you – it seems that the author has read your mind and knows it is a Fantasy and it’s a GrimDark Fantasy and it’s written for Fantasy readers, especially those who like GrimDark Fantasy novels
      2. To the reader – it’s not clear at all
        1. It might be a suspense novel that is miscategorized
        2. It might be a romance novel that is put into Fantasy to reach that narrow sliver of readers who like both GrimDark Fantasy and Shifter Romance
        3. It might be a Young Adult author who is under the misconception that GrimDark Fantasy readers ought to also be reading high school romances featuring cheerleaders who secretly hunt vampires
  2. Get the Absolute Best Editing and Proofreading you can afford
    1. Editing, Proof Reading and Book Cover must be 30% to 40% of your total budget, not 10%
    2. A well polished book sells more, gets more reviews, and has a longer life cycle
    3. Editing can make or kill a book
  3. Get the Absolute Best Book Cover you can afford
    1. We see authors spending thousands on book marketing though they have a self made cover or a $10 cover
    2. You must get the absolute best cover you can afford
  4. [3rd Most Important] Please do not make a book cover yourself
    1. Yes, you are getting a kick out of selecting images yourself
    2. Yes, you are getting a kick out of learning Photoshop and putting together a cover yourself
    3. However, the market will give you a kick on your backside if you use a cover you have designed yourself
    4. A professionally designed book cover amplifies and adds to your book marketing
    5. A self made cover cuts results of all your boom marketing by 50% to 90%
      1. That is not a typo
      2. A book promotion site that can get you 100 sales with a professionally designed cover
      3. Will get you only 10 to 50 sales with a self made book cover
  5. Be 100% crystal clear with readers about what the book is, what the book genres are, what the value proposition is
    1. Please don’t mislead readers about the book genres
      1. You’re thinking – If I put 7 genres what possible harm could it do? Perhaps readers from the 5 genres it is not really in, will still buy it
      2. Readers are thinking – If the author thinks it fits in 7 genres, then it probably fits in none of them
      3. Then you don’t understand why the book is not selling
    2. Please don’t mislead readers about the book length and type
      1. Portraying a short story as a full length book will get you negative reviews
      2. Hiding that the book ends in a cliffhanger will get you 1 star reviews
      3. Readers don’t mind if you just tell them up front what the book is
    3. You have to clearly spell out for readers
      1. What the Book Genre is
      2. What the Book Sub Genres are
      3. Who the book is suited for
      4. Similar Authors
      5. Similar Books
      6. It is your job to make this CRYSTAL CLEAR for readers
      7. It is not the readers’ job to conduct an investigation to figure out whether or not the book is the genre they read
  6. Have a clear Main Target for your book promotion and focus 100% on that
    1. If you want to get Bestseller Status, prioritize getting lots of sales within a short time period
      1. Trying to get Bestseller Status while pinching pennies will guarantee failure
      2. It’s OK to keep an eye on RoI
        1. However, you have to accept that each incremental sale will cost more and more in marketing
    2. If you want to get reviews, then focus on marketing channels and promotion methods that lead to reviews
    3. If you want to reach  a lot of readers, then focus on maximum reach
    4. If you want to make money, then focus on Return on Investment
    5. If you want to build a readership, then focus on giving readers a taste of your book
    6. If you want to build your email list, then focus on marketing methods such as Facebook Ads that allow you to gather reader emails
  7.  Plan and schedule things well in advance
    1. It can take 1 to 2 months to plan out and set up everything
    2. If doing a big marketing push for a New Fantasy Book Release, then start the marketing and planning and scheduling 3 to 4 months in advance
    3. If doing a big marketing push for an existing fantasy book, then start the marketing planning and scheduling 2 months in advance
  8. Be prepared for things to go wrong
    1. Biggest Risk – Amazon messing up the price of your book
      1. Mitigation – Start the discount period 1 or 2 days before your book promotion and marketing starts
      2. Mitigation – Check the actual book store price and not what your KDP dashboard shows you
    2.  Biggest Risk – Negative Reviews sinking your book promotion
      1. Mitigation – Make sure you get your most loyal readers to write reviews right at the start
      2. Mitigation – Have a street team and get reviews from them early on
    3. Major Risk – One of the book promotion sites has a bad day
      1. Mitigation – Have multiple book promotion sites and have Facebook Ads
    4. Risk you can do nothing about – Book turns out to not have market demand
      1. Nothing you can do about this
      2. Test and Research as much as possible BEFORE starting a large book marketing push
        1. Make sure there is an actual market for your book
    5. Major Risk – No or Very Few Reviews at the start
      1. This is a major risk because reviews are the biggest selling tool for a book
      2. You must make sure you get reviews in, right from the start of the book promotion
  9. Make sure your book is available and discounted during the promotion (if you’re running a discounted book promotion)
    1.  Authors will sometimes not discount the book or discount it too late (most book stores require you to discount it 3 days in advance)
    2. Authors will sometimes forget to publish the book
    3. These sound like crazy mistakes to make. However, they happen 5% of the time
    4. These are easily avoidable
    5. Please don’t make these mistakes
      1. A book promotion site or a Facebook Ad can’t help you if the book is at the wrong price, or not available to buy
  10. Save all the Feedback you get from your Book Promotion and Marketing Push
    1. Check things daily and keep updating information on whether promotion is working as expected or not
    2. Check each day to make sure sales are as you expected
    3. Check and make sure the book price doesn’t get changed (the book stores sometimes make mistakes)
    4. Check and make sure the book promotion is running at the places it is supposed to run
    5. One of the biggest points of feedback you will get is that some marketing channels will do brilliantly well for your book, some will do decently well, and some will not work
      1. Even within the Top 10 Fantasy Book Promotion Sites, some sites work very well for one set of authors and not as well for another group of authors
    6. Save this information on what book promotion sites and what marketing channels work best for your book
    7. This is, in some ways, the most critical information you will need for all future book promotion and marketing that you do

Doing all the above things can be the difference between a

  1. Decent Promotion
  2. AND
  3. A Great Promotion that makes you a Category Bestseller, gives you good Return on Investment, and gives you valuable data on what Fantasy book promotion sites work for your books

All the Best!

How to Increase the Number of Reviews you get after Promoting Your Fantasy Novel

The secret to getting good reviews for your Fantasy Novel is 7 key aspects

  1. Make sure your Fantasy book is very well written
    1. The more carefully you write it
    2. The more you rewrite it
    3. The better it will be and the higher the chance readers will feel compelling to leave a review
  2. Make sure your Fantasy book is well polished
    1. It should be well edited so that the flow of the book is strong
    2. It should be proof read so that there are almost no errors
      1. This enables readers to stay in the Fantasy world you have created, and not get pulled out
      2.  Staying in your Fantasy world means they enjoy your book more
      3. That greatly increases the chance they leave a good review
    3. A lack of polish indicates a lack of respect for their time
  3. Make sure you allow readers to Escape From The Real World
    1. Readers need to get away from it all
    2. They need a world they can enjoy and where they have control
      1. A world where good triumphs over evil
      2. Where things work the way they should
    3. Readers need that escape from Reality
      1. Most readers only have free time for one or two books a month
      2. If they are giving that precious time to your book, it is important to respect it
      3. After all the headaches and problems of their everyday life, they want to enter a fantasy world and forget all their worries
      4. The more deep they can go in, and the more they can stay in that Fantasy world for a long time
      5. The higher the chance they will love your book and leave a good review
  4. Make sure to Ask For Reviews
    1. Readers have ZERO idea that you benefit greatly from a positive review
    2. The vast majority of readers who love your books
      1. Have no idea that you would appreciate a review
      2. Have no idea that other readers decide, whether or not they will buy a book, primarily based on other reviews
      3. Even though they decide based on reviews, they don’t realize they can add a review for a book they like and help the author
    3.  It’s your job to
      1. Make readers aware that you would appreciate a review
      2. Ask readers to leave a review if they like your book
  5. Make sure to Ask for Reviews At The Right Time and From The Right Readers
    1. Ask for reviews at the Point of Highest Satisfaction
      1. This will be at the end of the book if you have written a good book
      2. Make sure there is a nice, polite request to leave a review at the end of the book
    2.  Ask for reviews from readers who like your books
      1. Your most loyal readers are one group
      2. Your repeat customers are another group
    3. Ask for reviews from readers who tend to leave good reviews
      1. If you know that one group of readers leave tough reviews
        1. It is best to avoid them altogether
      2. If you know another group of readers tend to leave good reviews
        1. Make sure to ask them
  6. Make sure your Fantasy book is promoted to Fantasy readers and to Fantasy readers in the EXACT sub genres your book is in
    1. Firstly, they must be Fantasy readers
    2. Secondly, they must be Fantasy readers in the exact Fantasy sub genres your book is in
    3. The better the fit between the reader and your book
      1. The more likely they will review it
      2. The more likely they will leave a good review
  7. Sell as many books as possible
    1. For a very, very well written Fantasy book, you should expect 1 to 10 reviews for every 500 books sold
    2. For a well written Fantasy book, you should expect 1 to 10 reviews for every 1,000 books sold
    3. One brute force method to increase the number of reviews, is selling more and more books
    4. If other methods are not working
      1. You are having a problem finding the Perfect Right readers for your book
      2. You are not willing to improve/rewrite your book
      3. You are allergic to polishing your book and improving the user experience
      4. You are not good as asking for Reviews
      5. You don’t have access to your most loyal readers
    5. Then you are left with the brute force method of selling more and more books

It’s not easy getting reviews. However, half the battle is won the minute you realize the Twin Truths that

  1. Readers have absolutely no idea how much a review benefits an Author
  2. It is the Author’s Job (your job) to Ask the Reader for A Review

Best of luck!

Reviews will make or break your book so treat getting reviews with the respect it deserves

Fantasy Book Promotion Sites vs Facebook Ads

Facebook works well for Fantasy Books

Authors can basically be divided into three groups

  1. Authors who can’t get Facebook Ads to work
    1. If you fall into this category – focus on other marketing methods like the Top 10 Fantasy book promotion sites
  2. Authors who can get Facebook Ads to work, though not with positive Return on Investment
    1. In this case, use Facebook Ads when you need to make a Bestseller Push, when doing a launch push, and to supplement other marketing methods
  3.  Authors who can get Facebook Ads to work, and with a positive Return on Investment
    1. This is the ideal case
    2. You can use them alongside the top fantasy book promotion sites, or by themselves

The most important thing to remember with Facebook Ads is that it is a bidding system and if you start chasing sales your spend on Facebook Ads will keep growing and become unsustainable. You must limit yourself to a reasonable cost

Fantasy Book Promotion Sites vs Amazon Marketing Services

Authors usually fall into 4 categories when it comes to Amazon Marketing Services Ads

  1.  Authors who can’t get Amazon Marketing Services to work at all
    1. Roughly 50% of authors fall into this category
    2. You shouldn’t feel bad if you can’t make head or tail of how to get it to work
      1. You have a lot of fine company
  2.  Authors who can get Amazon Marketing Services to work, though not with Positive Return on Investment
    1. AMS is very tough to get right
    2. Quite a few authors fall into this category
  3.  Authors who can get Amazon Marketing Services to work, and with Positive Return on Investment
    1. This is the ideal case
    2. Unfortunately, this is a small percentage
    3. Only 15% to 20% of Authors are able to make it work
  4. Authors who were able to make Amazon Marketing Services to work
    1. However, they can no longer get it to work
    2. There almost seems to be something in the bidding system that makes it tougher and tougher to continue to do well
      1. It might just be competition
      2. It might be a feature of the Bidding system

In general, it is much better to focus your energy, money, and time on Facebook Ads and Book Promotion Sites, than on Amazon Marketing Services

Why is Fantasy growing so quickly?

Fantasy is growing very quickly for a few reasons

  1. The emergence of Mega Hits such as Game of Thrones
  2. The continued strength of Eternal Fantasy series such as The Lord of the Rings
  3. The world going to Hell in a Handbasket
    1. The worse reality gets, the more people want to escape into Fantasy
    2. This trend is also highlighted by the growing popularity of Super Hero movies
    3. People feel things are so bad now that normal people like Dirty Harry can’t fix it
      1. It requires Superman and Magic and Batman
  4. Fantasy authors, for some reason we don’t quite understand, bucking the trend of going shorter/easier/faster and instead writing longer and deeper and more intricate novels
  5. The massive growth of Netflix and streaming services leading to a lot of Fantasy series being made into TV Shows and Movies
    1. Firstly, this introduces Fantasy to a whole new generation
      1. When they see how much more entertaining a good Fantasy show like Game of Thrones is (versus Real Housewives of Cocomo)
      2. They want to read Fantasy
    2. Secondly, this motivates Fantasy authors
      1. Who wouldn’t want their Fantasy series to be made into a TV show or a Movie?
  6. People having more time on their hands
    1. All the trends of the 21st century (Coronavirus, Working from Home, More Automation) gives people a lot more time
  7. Fantasy is very well suited to a world where reality is harsher and darker

If you’re a Fantasy Author you are perfectly positioned to benefit from this trend. However, it will require a lot of work

The 3 Core Skills for Authors

The 3 Core Skills for authors are the three most important skills an Author can learn. These also apply to Fantasy authors

The 3 Core Skills are

  1. Knowing What to Write (Writing the Right Book for The Right Market)
  2. Writing Very Well
  3. Marketing Very Well

These are the most critical skills because

  1. Achieving mastery in one of them, and becoming very good in the other two, almost always leads to success
  2. Becoming very good in all three of them leads to a successful career as an author
    1. Even if you are not able to achieve mastery in one of them, you can still have a successful and long career
    2. PROVIDED you become at least very good in each of the three
  3. If you are missing one or more of these skills, it is very difficult to succeed

While these apply to all careers where you create a product, they are especially applicable to Books & Publishing because

  1. It’s very difficult to succeed as an author
  2. Publishing & Books are in a state of transition
    1. The requirements to succeed are quite high
    2. The number of opportunities are also very high
  3. A very large percentage of authors completely disregard areas such as
    1. Market Research to find out what market to create a product for
    2. Writing what readers are asking for
      1. Authors tend to write what they want authors to buy
    3. Marketing & Sales
    4. Branding
    5. Customer Relationship Management

Please read this post on Levels of Mastery of The 3 Core Skills to better understand the 3 Core Skills for Authors

The 3+3 Golden Rules of Fantasy Book Promotion

There are some Golden Rules that apply to Fantasy Book Promotion

First, are the three Golden Rules that apply to all book promotion and marketing –

  1. The Market Always Wins
    1. Readers will buy what they WANT to buy, and not what you wish they would buy
    2. Jack Welch – See Reality As It Is, not as you want it to be, or as it was
    3. Reality – Readers dictate what sells in books
      1. Gone are the days when Big Publishers could stuff the book stores with ‘Bestsellers’ they wanted readers to buy
        1. Readers would have little choice
        2. Even then, Large Publishers had a surprisingly low success rate
        3. For every 100 books they attempted to force readers to buy, only 2 to 5 would become big hits
      2. The ebook stores do try very hard to force $10 to $20 ebooks down readers’ throats
        1. They are not being able to brainwash readers either
      3. Readers are shifting gradually to buying only what they want to buy
    4. If you are smart about it, this is the best thing for you as a self published author
      1. Embracing that people buy what THEY want to buy
    5. If you are willing to give readers WHAT THEY ARE WILLING TO BUY and AT A PRICE THEY ARE WILLING TO PAY
      1. Then you can do very well
      2. If you fall into the same trap as ebook stores and Large Publishers and try to dictate to readers what they should read
        1. You are likely to fail
      3. Look around you – Do you see any market where readers buy things they don’t want?
        1. Much easier to write and sell what readers are already willing to buy
  2. The Game is Won or Lost in the Selection of Book Genres
    1. Fantasy is a very good and very competitive genre
      1. Choosing Fantasy, on the whole, is a very good decision
    2. What sub genres within Fantasy you choose to write in, will determine everything
      1. Are you picking a genre you can write very well in?
      2. Are you picking a genre that is not overwhelmed by competition?
      3. Are you picking a genre that you are passionate about?
      4. Are you picking a genre that can lead to a movie or a TV series?
      5. Are you picking a genre that is growing or one that is collapsing?
    3. In addition to picking what genre to write in
      1. You must make sure you put your book in the right categories at the book stores
      2. You must make sure all your promotion and marketing markets your book to the right readers
      3. You must make sure your book page, your book cover, and your book categories (the ones listed on the book page) match the book’s genres perfectly
  3. Writing the Right Product for The Right Market is The Only Thing that matters
    1. Put aside everything that you think is the ‘secret’ to success
      1. It’s not ‘luck’ or ‘chance’
      2. It is not writing beautifully
      3. It is not buying $1,000 marketing snakeoil from some wanker pretending to be an altruist
      4. It is not some secret or shortcut
      5. It is not working very hard
      6. It is not throwing a lot of money
    2. You need just two things
      1. First – You need The Right Market
      2. Second – You need The Right Product for this Right Market
    3. That is all you need
      1. Find a Good Market – the Right Market for you
        1. Where you are happy writing
        2. Where you can write well
        3. Where a good market exists
        4. Where people will buy your book
      2. Then find what Product that Market is ASKING FOR
        1. What kind of books are people already buying?
        2. What kind of books are people asking for?
        3. What kind of book can you write which will delight these readers?
      3. Write The Right Book for this Right Market
    4. You have to pay a very high price if you are stubborn about forcing readers to buy what you want them to buy
      1. Firstly, you will most likely fail
        1. How often in your life have you actually convinced someone to do something they don’t want to do?
        2. Even when you succeeded, did it end well?
      2. Secondly, even if you succeed it will take so much time and effort it will not be worth it
        1. Taking 20 years to sell 10,000 copies of a book that readers don’t really want to buy
        2. That’s a pyrrhic victory

The sooner you embrace these Golden Rules, the sooner you will be on the path to succeeding as an author

Second, these are three Golden Rules that apply especially to Fantasy Book Promotion –

  1. For Great Rewards you need to make Great Sacrifices
    1. If you see yourself becoming a big Fantasy author and selling a lot of books
      1. Perhaps even getting a TV Series like Game of Thrones
    2.  You have to ask yourself – What am I willing to sacrifice for that?
      1. We’re not talking about money
        1. A lot of people have money and still will not succeed
      2. Are you willing to sacrifice your ego?
        1. The Ego which is telling you your half baked book is as good as Stephen King and Tolkien?
        2. The Ego which says that readers should buy whatever you write
          1. That Market Research is for losers
          2. Whatever you write instantly becomes what the market wants
        3. The Ego which tells you that you know how to make a book cover better than someone who has been doing it for 20 years
      3. Are you willing to work very hard and stop looking at the world from your own perspective?
        1. You have to look at the world from the readers’ perspective
        2. Instead of – how much money can this reader make me?
        3. You have to start thinking – how much benefit and pleasure does a reader get from my book?
        4. Instead of – it’s too much effort to remove mistakes and errors from my writing
        5. You have to start thinking – I cannot diminish the pleasure my readers receive by having errors in my book
      4. Are you willing to fail repeatedly?
        1. Some authors go crazy after the first failure
          1. Looking for a scapegoat
          2. Anyone they can find and whose cat they can assassinate to make themselves feel better that their book is not selling
          3. Instead of embracing the failure as feedback. Data that will help them, in the future, to succeed
            1. They start looking at whose black cat they can blame their failure on
        2. Most authors cannot handle failing repeatedly
          1. Instead of viewing it as – I’m getting closer to success
          2. They view it as – The world is against me. I was born under a bad sign. I’m just Bad Company
        3. Failure is your FRIEND
          1. Embrace Failure
      5. It’s INCREDIBLY hard to succeed as an author
        1. Most of what makes it hard is that each of us authors has a VISION of what we see ourselves as
        2. We are not willing to accept that our current reality is a step in that journey towards our ideal vision
        3. We are still a long ways off
        4. The only way to get there and make our Vision a Reality
        5. Is to accept that it is only a Vision and we have to work hard to make it a reality
  2. Produce Really High Quality Books for a Market that Exists and which you are Passionate About
    1. Fantasy is a goldmine genre
      1. Several Fantasy subgenres are amazing
      2. Several upcoming Fantasy subgenres are booming
    2.  What do you need to take advantage?
      1. A very, very well written book
      2. Written for a market that exists
    3. Why should it be in a Genre you are passionate about?
      1. Because it cannot be Excellent until and unless you work your ass off
      2. You cannot work your ass off unless you are very passionate about the genre
    4. Why should it be a high quality book?
      1. Because the best books don’t just sell double of mediocre books, they sell 10 to 100 times more
      2. Because Fantasy is very competitive
      3. Because it’s not just
        1. First prize is a Cadillac. Second prize is a set of steak knives
        2. First prize is a TV show and millions in earnings. Second prize is a set of steak knives
    5. You need the absolute best quality book you can produce
      1. And that is only possible if you are really passionate and willing to think about your book day and night
      2. It should be A JOY to be writing in the genre
  3. Stay focused on running your marathon
    1. Author X will come in, do everything wrong, and get decent success
      1. You stop running your marathon thinking he knows some secret
      2. You decide to try and replicate his magical sprint to decent success
      3. 3 years later you find what works for that author does not work for you because it was pure randomness
      4. What’s worse, you have given up slower, Bigger Success for the promise of faster, smaller success
    2. Marketing Guru Y will come in and promise that instead of 10 years you can succeed in 2 years
      1. You start following the shortcut of ‘marketing a low quality, half baked book’
      2. 5 years later you find you have been running in the opposite direction of what you should have been running on
    3. You have to run a marathon
      1. There is a set course, which thousands of authors before you have taken to be very successful
      2. It works for people willing to ACTUALLY RUN THE MARATHON
      3. People who hop on a scooter, or cut across the path, or start sprinting, are guaranteed to fail
    4. Enjoy the journey
      1. It’s going to take 5 to 20 years
      2. Make sure you pick a genre you are passionate about
      3. So that you can enjoy the journey
    5. Don’t ever start sprinting + Don’t give up half way
      1. When you are getting frustrated
      2. When you are half way done, and the finish line suddenly seems infinitely further than you thought
      3. Don’t give up on running a marathon
      4. Don’t start sprinting
      5. Keep running the marathon

Fantasy is a difficult genre to succeed in. Fantasy is a very good genre to write in

Fantasy is an amazing genre if you can become a successful author

Best of luck on your journey – keep running the marathon and make sure you are running the right marathon

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