Tuesday 3 August 2021

Soft launches and hard launches


 Us Navy, Future Littoral Combat Ship

I’ve mentioned this to one or two people already. I’ll go into a little more detail here.

The soft launch

The soft launch is what we do immediately the book is available. From our point of view this means:

  • informing Nielsen’s (Bridge House only; the distributors do this for us with the other imprints)
  • informing the author
  • letting our fans and followers know (via social media e.g. Facebook groups and pages, and email lists)
  • putting the book in our online bookshop
  • sending it out to our list of reviewers

You might:

·         put the book on your web site

·         let your fans and followers know (via social media and your email lists)  

·         send it out to your list of reviewers

The hard launch

The hard launch should come about three weeks later. This has allowed the book to filter into all of the databases so people like our friends Amazon are able to obtain the book and have it showing on their sites. The might be one big physical event followed by a few other book signings in bookshops or other quirkier venues. You might consider a blog tour. You would again invite your fans and followers but you might go wider; get local press involved, invite people you don’t know yet. You might do an online event alongside this.

We are willing for the hard launch:

·         to come to the event if it’s within a twenty mile radius of where we live  - and we’ll do whatever task you assign us – serve the cake, wash up, set the chairs out, make a speech, be master of ceremonies etc.

·         let you have some books upfront.  You can pay for these later at author discount, or have them set against  royalties 

·         organise a free online event  for you –

Please ask us to do this – we won’t ask you.  We don’t want to pressure you.


We’ve considered again doing pre-orders and dismissed it again. This can have the effect of creating a buzz around the day the book comes out (soft launch time) but in fact this barely tweaks the Amazon algorithm; the bots have realised this presents a false picture. We’d rather just get on with the marketing once the book is out. Just a note: generally the e-book is out a few days before the physical book. We don’t inform the author that the book is ready until we have the proof copy of the physical book.

Link to our book shop

There are more details about the bookshop below. It’s probably a good idea to send your fans and followers a link to that. They then have a choice about how to buy. Note, Amazon currently does odd thigs to the RRP and delivery. The Hive (UK) offers free delivery and gets out of stock books out more quickly than Amazon gets in stock books out on free delivery.  Plus The Hive supports local bookshops. Barnes and Noble US offers quick delivery and never mentions whether books are in stock or not. Actually our books should never be in stock; they are print on demand.

Amazon of course is where customers have to go for the e-book. And further down the line it’s worth looking there because occasionally they sell our paperbacks at very low prices. Spot that and send your fans there or buy up some copies yourself. It’s fine; we still get the wholesale price and you therefore get a normal royalty.  

We can get books out quite quickly but have to charge shipping unless customers but five or more boos.  The bookshop is fully searchable and browsable so customers should easily be able to find other books that you’ve written or are in, or other books similar to yours.      

Military_Material from Pixabay

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