Do You Need a Self-Publishing Coach? (Benefits and Costs Explained)


Why should you even consider a self-publishing coach?

You may or may not know it already, but if you want to work as a full-time writer, you’re going to have to learn about business. 

Some writers shudder at the idea of having to learn about the business end of the job. We tend to romanticize art, and sometimes the idea of getting into the details of monetizing what we do can feel cold or heartless. But if you want to work full-time, you’re going to have to make money. If you want to make money, you have to learn how to do that. 

For a lot of writers, this is terrifying! What if I don’t have a background in business? What if I’m self-publishing for the first time and I have no idea what I’m doing? You can lose a lot of time and money going about it the wrong way, and that can be a considerable barrier to entry. 

What if I told you that you could have someone help you out? And I don’t mean someone to give you their two cents on your manuscript or someone who does content for self-publishing in general. I mean someone who will work with you, individually, to make sure that your book and its launch are all the absolute best it can be. 

That someone is a self-publishing coach, and in this article, we’ll explain what they do, where you can find one, and how much you can expect to pay for one. Let’s get started! 

This guide to working with a self-publishing coach covers:

  1. What does a self-publishing coach do?
  2. Building a career VS writing a book
  3. How to find a self-publishing coach
  4. Signs you can benefit from a self-publishing coach
  5. How much does a self-publishing coach cost?
  6. Want to learn more about self-publishing school book coaches?

What does a self-publishing coach do?

A self-publishing coach isn’t the same thing as a writing coach or lifestyle coach. These coaches are specifically here to help you put together a self-publishing strategy. How does that look specifically? Here are the key perks you can expect from a self-publishing coach: 

Get help from a writing expert 

Your self-publishing coach should be an expert in your genre and target demographic. Ideally, you’ll be working with someone who already has successfully published books in the genre you’re working in. This means they know how to write these books well, and that means they can help you make yours good, too! 

This goes beyond the scope of what a writing coach or critique partner might be able to do. Because the self-publishing coach is specialized, they’ll know how to give advice specific to your readership and target demographic. Yes, they can also help you with technical details like prose and plot, but they’ll also know how to optimize tropes and subgenre to make sure you’re making your book as appealing as possible. 

Develop a publication schedule 

Self-publishing involves drafting, revising, editing, beta rounds, cover artists, formatting, and a book launch (and probably a few other things I’m forgetting to mention). It’s a ton to manage, and it can be impossible to sort through, let alone schedule out. And ideally, you want to schedule out your book’s projected release so you can plan time to market in the run-up to your book’s launch. 

A self-publishing coach can help you map out how long it should take you to draft, what to expect from each stage of the process, and ultimately plan out your publication schedule. This will keep you on track and organized, and it’ll immensely help your chances of actually finishing the thing. 

You know how outlines are a lifesaver when it comes to finishing a book? Same with a solid publication schedule. 

Assist with marketing and sales 

It can be tricky for writers without a background in sales to navigate the rocky waters of book marketing. But guess what? A self-publishing coach can help you. 

Yes, you can go online and read books and do your best to put together a plan for your launch. However, a self-publishing coach can work with you individually to put together the perfect plan for your specific book—this cuts down on a lot of research time and trial and error. 

Building a career vs. writing a book 

A self-publishing coach isn’t just here to make sure you write a good book. They’re not even really here to make sure you write one good book and then publish it. They’re here to help you develop your business and give you a foundation to start your career. 

Being a full-time self-published author is, essentially, running a business. And this means that a single product you sell (one book, for example) is not going to determine the overall success of your business. It’s important to write and sell good books, and it’s equally important to make sure you’re building and maintaining a platform

How to find a self-publishing coach

Sounds great, you may be saying. Where can I sign up? Where do I find one of these self-publishing coaches? 

SPS self-publishing coaches 

Did you know Self-Publishing School offers one on one self-publishing coaching? 

As part of their programs, SPS offers a ton of services to writers looking to kick-start their career. These programs are broken up by specialty—there are programs for children’s book authors, publicity and speaking, course building, fiction, and more. 

Within each of these programs, SPS offers one-on-one coaching with bestselling authors and experts to work with your specific book or project. This coaching is tailored to you and your needs—it’s not one size fits all! 

These programs also come with a weekly group coaching, which is available five days a week. This means you’ll be able to ask questions and consult your team regularly, and having that consistent check-in can be crucial in staying on track. 

Social media 

You can also find self-publishing coaches on social media. Twitter and Instagram are tools you’ll need to use when it comes time to market, anyway, so if you don’t already have them downloaded, now’s the time! 

Follow self-published authors online, especially successful ones. You’re bound to run into self-publishing coaches along the way, or at least someone who knows a self-publishing coach. If you find a coach this way, make sure you check out their website to see how they take new clients—some coaches prefer not to receive client requests in their direct messages, for example, and ask that you fill out a Google Form on their site. 

Google search

It may sound a little vague to say ‘Google it,’ but honestly, this is one of the best ways to find self-publishing coaches. Just searching for ‘self-publishing coach’ and your genre will give you a host of sites to check out and articles that might link to coaches who can help you. 

How do you filter through all the self-publishing coaches you find? Have a budget in mind (this will filter out coaches who are outside your budget range), research which genres they specialize in, and check out their social media. 

Also, if they’ve published books, check those out, too! If they’ve written a book you don’t think is very good and, according to social media, isn’t performing very well, you might not want their advice when it comes to building your platform. 

Signs you can benefit from a self-publishing coach

Not sure if a self-publishing coach is right for you? No worries. Here’s a checklist for your personal reference—if you find yourself relating to these questions, a self-publishing coach might be right for you. 

Do you want to make writing your full-time job? 

Again, self-publishing coaches are here to help you start a career. If you’re just looking to draft and revise a novel and you’re not too worried about the rest of it, a self-publishing coach might be an unnecessary investment for you. 

Is self-publishing scary and difficult to navigate? 

There’s no shame in admitting it: self-publishing is really, really hard. It can be hard to find reliable information about how to sell your books, and if you check the stats, a majority of self-published authors sell few to no copies of their work. 

If you’re heading into the self-publishing process feeling terrified and lost, a self-publishing coach would be able to help guide you through the process. 

Does the business side of writing overwhelm you? 

Maybe you’re not scared at all, but even so, you don’t have any business experience. You might be a brilliant writer, but you still need to know how to market and sell your book if you want to make a career of it, especially if you’re investing your own money into the production of that book. 

The business side of writing can be tricky! It involves social media expertise, which is an entire career path unto itself, and a whole set of skills some writers just never get the chance to develop. If you’re thinking that organizing a book launch and building a social media platform alongside drafting and revising your novel sounds overwhelming, guess what? A self-publishing coach can walk you through it. 

Does self-publishing sound perfect, but you’ve got no idea where to start? 

Obviously, you should not hire a self-publishing coach if you plan to traditionally publish. Research the two options to decide what’s best for you, and proceed accordingly. 

However, say you have decided that self-publishing is a good option for you. And say you’ve got a pretty good social media presence and a general understanding of business. You might still have no idea where to start when it comes to, specifically, writing and selling books. 

If you want to make sure you get off on the right foot with your self-publishing career, a self-publishing coach is a great step in doing so. 

How much does a self-publishing coach cost?

Alright, let’s get straight to it: how much is all of this going to cost

First things first: self-publishing can be expensive. There are ways to work around the steeper price tags, but in general, you should expect to spend between $1-2,500 on the production of your book. This includes cover art, formatting, editors, and marketing. This does not include the cost of a self-publishing coach. 

However: a self-publishing coach will help you not only publish your book, but kick-start your career. It is an extra investment, but it’s an extra investment to your business as a whole, not just to the one specific project you’re working on now. 

All of that being said: what you pay is going to vary a ton based on how experienced your coach is, what services they offer, and how in-demand they are. 

Let’s consider the coaching you receive as part of your investment into a Self-Publishing School program. However, you’re not paying for only one-on-one coaching. You’re also getting the group coaching, getting lifetime access so you can use these services for future books, getting help building your platform and business on the whole, and so on—you’re paying more because you’re getting a ton of benefits. 

Like with any big sale, go into your search with a budget in mind, and know how far you’re willing to stray from that budget for the perfect coach. Then, find self-publishing coaches who are right for you. It won’t be a ton of help to get advice from someone who can’t offer you a personalized experience—they should be the best possible fit. Contact them to compare your budget to their prices and see whether you’re a good fit. 

Want to learn more about Self-Publishing School book coaches?

If you have additional questions, or need additional resources, book a call with our Resource Team.

Our team can give you extra resources to help you on your author journey, learn about your book and your book goals.

If you’re interested in learning more about how Self-Publishing School can help you write, publish, and market your books (or sell more books if you’re published already), they can schedule a call with one of our Publishing Success Strategists for you.

Your Success Strategist will ask questions about your book to understand if your a good fit for our programs and explain what we offer at Self-Publishing School. You’ll learn about our tailored courses, writing groups, mastermind community, and our amazing book coaches.

With one of the highest success rates in the industry (for an online school plus coaching and accountability program), we want to make sure that you are paired with the right coach and program for your book, or we’ll recommend other resources for you.

Curious, but not ready to book a call yet? No problem! Take our quick quiz below and discover the best Publishing Path for you.

Disclosure: Some of the links above may contain affiliate partnerships, meaning, at no additional cost to you, Self-Publishing School may earn a commission if you click through to make a purchase.

Gloria Russell

Gloria Russell is a freelance writer and author living in Colorado. When she isn’t writing short stories or critiquing manuscripts, she’s planning her next road trip and heeding the whims of her cat, Ham.

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