How to Plan a Book Launch: Best & Worst Times of the Year 

JD Caron
August 29, 2023

The most vital things to learn about how to plan a book launch…

You’ve spent months, maybe years, crafting your story, pouring your soul into it. You don’t want it to get lost in the noise, do you?

Imagine releasing your magnum opus in the busiest month, overshadowed by hundreds of others, barely noticed.

But what if you had the secret calendar? The perfect months marked to maximize your launch potential? Stick around, and you won't have to imagine.

How to plan a book launch: Traditional Trends

Historically, there are some months that see roaring book sales, making them ideal for considering your virtual book launch and blasting it over social media.

The summer months from June to August and November and December (usually peaking during the first week of December) typically bring in the numbers for a successful book launch. Publishers know this and often reserve these slots for their most anticipated titles.

On the flip side, January and February are traditionally slow. Post-holiday exhaustion means readers might be stocked up on books from December gifts or sales and are possibly tightening purse strings after festive spending.

However, it's not just about branding these months as 'bad' and avoiding them completely when you're considering your book marketing strategy. It's crucial to understand the nuanced behaviors of readers during these times.

Take Valentine's Day, for example. If you're a romance writer, February can actually be a gold mine if you plan your book release along this time and align it with your stunning book launch ideas.

Romance novels or anthologies themed around love can see a significant boost around Valentine's Day, capitalizing on the mood of the month. So, instead of entirely writing off these months when you're thinking about a launch date for your new book it's more about recognizing their unique characteristics and adjusting your launch strategy accordingly.

How to plan a book launch: Anomalies to look out for

But here’s the twist: while it's essential to know these general trends for your book launch plan, sometimes external factors can heavily influence sales. Events, cultural shifts, even global news.

Remember the boost in dystopian fiction sales during early 2020 during the time of the virus of unspecified origin?

Another interesting trend is how other media, like movies or TV series, can impact book sales as you're figuring out the date of your upcoming book. The release of blockbuster movie Dune, for instance, reignited an interest in sci-fi, opening windows for related genres.

But, let's take a detour for a moment from successful launch dates. Raise your hand if you’ve ever purchased a book because of the book cover! Visual appeal, hype, and early reviews, all play a role in drawing readers in, regardless of the month.

Click here to learn more about book cover costs.

How to plan a book launch: What’s more important than timing?

Ultimately for you as the author, the crux of the matter isn't just about picking the ‘perfect month’ when planning your release day to pull in the most new readers. It’s about being equipped. Equipped with a killer marketing strategy that will propel your book regardless of when you decide to do your book launch event.

Having the right strategy means doing your research, understanding your target audience, running targeted marketing campaigns, engaging with your prospective readers, and continuously adapting. It's a dynamic, evolving process when you're looking at how to plan a book launch.

When planning your book launch strategy as an indie author, there’s a lot to consider, such as creating a compelling book trailer, posting on author platforms, successful book launch parties, and press releases, and preparing promotional material, such as blog posts and Amazon advertising campaigns and the list goes on. But instead of going in with a shot-gun approach, try applying the Pareto Principle (80-20 Rule) instead. Contact us if you need to learn more….

One strategy that we do highly recommend is that you don’t forget to encourage book reviews from early readers, as these reviews can greatly influence the perception of your work. Building a strong author platform is an ongoing process and needs to be nailed down right from the start.

How to plan a book launch: Summary

So, the million-dollar question: when is the best time to for a successful launch of your book?

Ready for it?

It’s when you have that robust, adaptable marketing plan in place.

Yes, while some months may give you a head start in your journey of how to plan a book launch, a powerful strategy can amplify your launch any month. Remember, even in down markets in the context of how to plan a book launch, hidden gems shine, and in bustling markets, without the right approach, even diamonds can go unnoticed.

I've got a game-changer for you when you're thinking about how to plan a book launch. I've distilled my experience into a powerful pre-publishing and marketing checklist. This isn't just a list; it's a blueprint for success when you're contemplating how to plan a book launch. I genuinely want to see you thrive, so I'm sharing it for FREE.

Grab yours and elevate your book's launch.

Always remember when you're considering how to plan a book launch: It's not just about when you launch, but how you launch.

Write passionately, and market smartly. Until next time, dream big and publish wisely!

About the author 

JD Caron

Denis was a coach long before he ever knew what that was. From his time in the military, to the decade he spent as a 911 ambulance dispatcher, he constantly found himself in leadership and teaching roles (he knows his way around an emergency). And after struggling to self-publish his first book, he knew he could help others do it better.

Currently, Denis is traveling around Europe, exploring WWII sites and sampling all the delightful cuisine the continent has to offer.

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