How to successfully market your novel online


I’m currently in the middle of writing a novel I wanted to publish soon. Originally I wanted to go down the traditional publishing route as opposed to self publishing because I thought I wouldn’t have to market it. After some research I realised that wasn’t the case.

Now I’m panicking since apart from wattpad and a rarely used Facebook account, I’m not very visible online and don’t know where to start.

I set up Twitter today to get started but I still feel worried about how to put myself out there, to the point where I’m not writing as much as I want to focus on marketing.

What are your tips for approaching the online world as a writer and how to find my audience without bombarding people with over promotion?


There are certain hashtags you can use on Twitter. There is a major writers’ community there and a few great hashtags are wattpad (obviously) XD writingcommunity and a few of the genres and sub genre hashtags your story has.

Twitter has played a big role in helping me get reads, but remember that being successful on WP doesn’t usually mean that success will transfer over to Amazon or anywhere else if you get published.

I advertise about once a day using different hashtags from the previous days. Some people might call that overboard, but I have 11,000 reads within five months.

Also keep in mind before you publish, make sure to have a professional editor go over the story with you and you should read it out a few times so you can spot any mistakes which need fixing.

Merry Christmas! :slight_smile:


Every genre is different. Every book is different. The way you market your first book now isn’t how someone who released their first book six months ago would have done it. Nor the way someone releasing their second, third, or twentieth book would do it.

I would recommend digging deep into the books by David Gaughran.


Thanks for the hashtag ideas, I’ve been trying to get the hang of them to reach a wider audience, i’ll be sure to use them

It’s true that my stories may not translate well outside of wattpad, I just wanted to find likeminded readers in my genre who would enjoy reading them

Your read count is amazing! I’ll be sure to do that

I was definitely planning on having a editor read through before I publish. Do you think it’s worth also enlisting beta readers beforehand to comment on the story’s structure?

Your advice really helped me, thanks again and Merry Christmas to you too! :smile:


I was trying to aim for 15,000 by the end of the year, but I’ll be happy with 12,000.


My genre is fan fiction and i’ve been wanting to find ways to appeal to that specific group, and it’s true marketing trends have changed a lot, which I struggle to keep up with.

Thanks for the recommendation, i’ll be sure to sure to check out those books


Also keep in mind that if you’re writing Fanfiction, most readers for that genre will not read originals. Speaking from experience.


Those are really good figures nonetheless! And how do you go about reaching out to potential readers once you’ve put your hashtags? Do you wait for someone to comment and engage them in further conversation about your story? How did you get them to become regular readers?


I think replying helps and sometimes they just vote on their own.

Lately, I’ve been trying to thank people who have added A Rider’s Fate to their library or reading list with the hope they will vote or comment.

Remember that comments are even less likely to happen than votes.

Most of the readers who comment are also active in the forums. :slight_smile: Be active here. I have over 10,000 posts on here, but I know there are people who have more.


Oh I had no idea. I have a fan fiction featuring the main cast but I made an original main character. I’m wrapping up the story now so I’ll make sure not to do that in my other works


Even if you have an original main character, that’s still Fanfiction if you’re using other people or stories written by other writers. By original I mean a story plot and ideas that you have created everything for.


That’s good advice. I like reaching out to people on wattpad who I see write in the same genre as me, I often vote, comment on those stories which some reciprocate and make forums in the fan fiction section to find potential supporters. For some reason I find Twitter harder to navigate and more impersonal, I try and talk to people but I don’t feel as confident about it.


Oh I understand, sorry I’m not good with a lot fan fiction terminology since I’m new to it.
I try not to deviate from the original plot anyway and simply add to it, which should be fine


The Wattpad community has a large presence, even when using different hashtags on Twitter. A few Featured writers have followed me there and checked out my stories. Of course the forums play a big role in that as well.


Oh, I misunderstood. You mean publish on Wattpad? I assumed you meant publish in the “real world.” I suppose, though, that you can use the same techniques, though you’d want to focus on the free ones, and you’d want to specifically target places where there are other fans.


Plus being active in the forums increases the chances that WP will feature your story if you submit a request. They like active writers.


I include the free hashtag on Twitter when I include the WP hashtag XD


Sorry for the confusion, I do want to publish in the real world, but I want to build up a base on wattpad and social media first to make it easier when I want to publish as I’ll have an audience to support me. In the future, I’m leaning towards self publishing

That’s why I wanted to focus on targeting a specific reader base online and understand how to properly promote to them


I see! Are you going to post some of your original fiction here too?

I’ll warn you – Wattpad doesn’t have the best record for turning readers of free content into purchasers of paid content. It’s disappointing.


Yes, I sometimes try and join forums but I need to do it a lot more to find readers with my interests. I wanted to also enter wattpad competitions to increase exposure