Follow our guest blogger and author M.K. Williams as she writes the Marketing Your Audiobooks Series of blog posts
M.K. Williams is an author and independent publisher. She has written and published numerous books under her own name and helped several authors realize their dreams of publishing their books as well. After having learned the ins-and-outs of self-publishing and independent publishing she is now on a mission to help aspiring authors get the answers they need, avoid money-traps, and navigate the process of self-publishing their first book through her brand Author Your Ambition.
We authors hear it ALL.THE.TIME! Your blurb needs to be this or that. It has to be X characters long. It has to have a bolded heading. It has to be short and simple. It has to have a hook. It has to have your many awards and accolades stuffed in somewhere. Oh, and keywords too, get those keywords in. But make it sound natural.
Many of us loathe this aspect of writing our book blurb. A 100,000 word novel - no problem. 500 characters to describe that book - no way, not gonna happen.
But all those dispensing the dizzying advice above are right. The blurb for your book is what sells the book. Yes, the cover artwork will grab their eye, but the blurb tells the reader if this book is indeed for them or not.
Whether you write it yourself, A/B test the copy to see which one does best, or hand this task off to a professional like Bryan Cohen at Best Page Forward, you need a blurb that sells your book.
While it is very easy to use the same blurb for your eBook, Paperback, and Audiobook, you may see better results with a blurb specific to your audio listeners.
Hear me out before you throw something at your computer screen. Yes, it is a little bit more work. But your audiobook audience IS NOT the same as your print or eBook audience. Sure, some superfans will purchase in multiple formats. But the person who listens to your audiobook may binge dozens of books on their long commute. Maybe they are looking for something specific like multiple narrators, or perhaps they will just listen to anything by their favorite voice actor. Including audiobook details in your audiobook blurb will help you appeal to this listener.
Some items you can include and highlight are:
- Multiple narrators/POV - For some this can be a great benefit, for others it can be a lot to keep up with. Highlight this feature if you took the time (and invested the money) to do multiple narrators.
- Accents - Some people love ‘em, some hate ‘em - get the right listener hooked and keep the wrong listener away. Someone who hates accents may leave a bad review, and honestly, you just don’t want them wasting their time.
- Narrator accolades - Did you work with an acclaimed voice actor? Did they have to do some singing in the book that showcased their theater-worthy voice? Did this narrator also happen to narrate another popular book or series in your genre? All of these are items to highlight.
- Audiobook Awards - Some book awards are specific to audio. If you have an award-winning production, shout it from the rooftops. But this award probably won’t make much sense on your eBook blurb.
Each of the above-listed items are unique selling propositions (USPs) for your audiobook. As an author, it can be hard to put on the “marketing” hat and think this way. Here is an easy exercise to get you started:
- What is something about your audiobook that makes it stand out from other audiobooks in your genre?
- What is something about your audiobook that offers a distinct experience from your print and eBook formats of that book?
Even if you can only think of two or three really unique items, that is fine. Lean into those distinctions.