You started your book publishing journey by outlining a great publishing planThen you outlined your book manuscript, wrote it, and polished it into a fierce market competitor. Now it is time to publish it to make it available for your target audience to enjoy.

This publishing process focuses on preparing your platform-the thing that helps you spread the word about your new book-physically producing your book, and distributing your book. Your publishing process will depend on your choice to either traditionally publish your book or self-publish, but the basic steps for preparing your platform will be the same regardless of which publishing option you have chosen.

I’ll warn you now that there are a lot of moving parts during the publishing stage, so having a success team is essential to managing the various responsibilities without stressing yourself out. I can help take the stress out of publishing by giving you custom publishing recommendations during a no cost and no obligation consultation.

Reaching Milestone #4: Prepare Your Platform

Oprah Winfrey has one of the best examples of a platform. Because Oprah kept giving people information and resources that they found valuable, women all over the nation kept talking about her show and getting their friends to connect to Oprah’s platform. Over time the platform has grown from a television show to a production company, a book club, a magazine, and even a network.

I’m not going to promise you a platform like Oprah’s, but it would be wise to borrow the principles she uses to help you have your message heard. You don’t need a television show to build a platform, thanks to technology you can start with a website that details your message and collects contact information from people who want to know more about your message, social media accounts that helps you tap into the online communities of people who need your message, and an offline promotion strategy like talk show interviews, public speaking or a partnership with a business or non-profit that serves your target audience.

If you want, you can always expand your platform to include your own television show (or a YouTube channel as the online alternative), a radio show (or podcast as the online alternative), or a number of other options. There is no limit to what you can do, but I do recommend that you start small, pay attention to how people are responding to you and then grow from there.

To start preparing your platform I recommend that you define your platform goals so you can get it ready to launch your book before it is published and continue to use it to promote your book after it is published. Setting up your platform before your book is published allows you to generate buzz and excitement before your book is released and allows buyers a chance to connect with you to build a long-term relationship. Those relationships will be helpful for the next related project you release.

Your platform is the most important key to a successful book launch. Learn more about the components of a successful book launch by reading this post: What Is the Best Way to Launch My Book?

When you complete this step, you will have reached Milestone #4: Prepare Your Platform. Visit the Resource Gallery for Milestone #4 to learn more about this milestone.

Reaching Milestone #5: Produce Your Book

When you completed Milestone #1: Outline Your Book Publishing Plan, you chose whether you would self-publishing or partner with a traditional publishing company, so your next steps are determined by that choice.

If you choose to work with a traditional publishing company, they will manage the book production for you. But before this happens, you need get a contract with a publisher:

Visit the Resource Gallery for Milestone #5 to learn more.

If you choose to self-publish you will need to find a company or freelancer to design your book cover, format your book interior and print your books for you. The following information is designed to help you navigate this process:

Visit the Resource Gallery for Milestone #5 to learn more.

When you complete this step, you will have reached Milestone #5: Produce Your Book.

Reaching Milestone #6: Distribute Your Book

Distribution is all about getting your book in the hands of your readers. If you are partnering with a traditional publishing company, they will handle this for you. But if you are a self-publisher, you may be interested in the following information and action guides:

Visit the Resource Gallery for Milestone #6 to learn more.

When you complete this step, you will have reached Milestone #6: Distribute Your Book. 

Final Thoughts

Publishing your message is an exciting and very detailed process. Because there are so many decisions to make along the way, it is easy to become overwhelmed. But as long as you remember who your target audience is and keep their interests in mind-along with a realistic expectation of how much time and money is available to put towards your book-you will make the right decisions.

Keep in mind that your launch will probably be in progress while you build or update your platform with information about your book, produce your book and distribute your book, so a success team will be essential. Remember, I can help you get the tools you need to navigate the process in a no cost and no obligation consultation.

Next Step

After your book is finally published, you will be ready to focus more on the business side of publishing and talk about managing sales.

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