A while ago, I wrote a blog on what a “book launch” is, why they matter, and if you really need one. The short answer is, it’s a way to celebrate your authorship journey while letting people know your book now exists in the world. It’s always going to be based around your book’s release date (usually determined by your publisher).

In this blog, I’ll be going over what specifically needs to happen in a launch; none of these are hard and fast rules, just more of a guideline for you to go by.

My Background

For those of you who maybe don’t know, I have experience working as a book launcher at an Inc. 5000 company where I helped launch numerous #1 Amazon and Wall Street Journal bestsellers. My clientele was primarily nonfiction authors comprised of C-suite executives, thought leaders, coaches, wellness experts, investment gurus, and more, so I’m very tuned in with the digital book marketing process.

The healthiest time to begin planning a launch (or, really, any kind of PR work) is a good 6 months out. I say healthiest because that’s the timeline that allows you a good amount of flexibility and runway without feeling like it’s dragging on. The only exception to this would be if you’re gunning for New York Times bestseller status if you’re publishing through a large press in NYC. The publishing and launch process alone can take years.

Ultimately, this post will cover the basics of what, specifically, needs to happen in any given book launch, whether you’re traditional, hybrid, or self-published.

6 Months Out

This is where a lot of the plotting and planning takes place. You’re taking stock of what you do and don’t have, what you do and don’t want/need, etc. Generally, though, this is what you will begin to think about…

3 Months Out

This is sort of unofficially when the countdown really begins. Your own marketing efforts will begin to seem a little overwhelming in combination with your book’s upcoming release, and—if you’ve chosen to hire a publicist—this is where they might seem a little quiet. Lots of emotions will be occurring around this time!

1 Month Out

This is where the real countdown begins. Keep in mind that your book’s publication is the first day of its life, so this is more so a beginning than an end.

Week of Launch

This is a great opportunity for you to re-ground yourself. Why did you start this whole journey in the first place? What is it that you really want to get out of this whole thing? Your expectations for your book may or may not pan out the way you think they will, so either way, just know that you WROTE A BOOK. You are among the small minority of people who said they were going to and did! That alone is worth celebrating. 👏🏼👏🏼

All the big pieces of your launch have already been put in place, so there’s not too much left to do here. You’ll want to keep in close contact with your publisher and/or publicist for any updates, changes, and other additional info.

Continue making content, spreading the word, and hyping up your book (and the people who have been supporting it as well).

Post-Launch/Publication

Your biggest goal has finally been accomplished and it’s common for you to wonder, “What now?”

This is typically when new authors feel a bit of a “crash.” You’ve spent the last 6 months and beyond writing, editing, publishing, and preparing your first book for launch. Expect your emotions to be a little bit of everywhere. Some have even felt their own version of post-partum after launching their book.

A book opens up a whole slew of new opportunities for you, especially if it’s your first one. It naturally lends itself to an increase in your credibility and authority, and if your book has seen a lot of post-launch success—raving reviews, notable media attention, shoutouts from Influencers, publication features, and more—you can leverage that on top of the book itself. (Ex: “My book is a #1 Amazon bestseller and has been featured in KDHamptons and LUX Magazine.”)

I hope this has been a valuable blog for you to read, and I thank you if you’ve made it all the way to the end! Feel free to bookmark this or print it and use it as a reference if you’re planning on launching a book yourself.


⭐ Let’s keep the conversation going! Email me at lauren@laurenericksonofficial.com 

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