Tag Archives: marketing

Book Promotion: What’s Hot, What’s Not

These days there are so many ways of promoting a book—yet also so many chances of that book not being noticed at all in the flood of promotion that washes over people daily. So as an author, what do you do? In this post I’m listing a few things that have worked—and not worked—for me. These are very personal observations of course; you may have had a totally different experience.

What’s hot:

Cover reveals on social media—accompanied by an intriguing ‘tag.’ These can start a buzz well before publication.

What’s not:

Book trailers on You Tube or similar channels. Heaps of fun to make but in terms of effects on sales, pretty much nil. You don’t get half as many people looking at them, compared to cover reveals. However, as long as they don’t cost you heaps of money and time to make, there’s no reason to not do it as it can be a nice adjunct.

What’s hot:

Interviews with local radio stations—a brilliant promotion, in my experience, although that may be because at our local radio station there are at least two presenters interested in books and publishing. They and their producers are very keen on local publishing/literary news stories. I have had many people over the years say they went to their local bookshop to find a book I’d spoken about on radio. If you have a similarly engaged presenter on local radio, cultivate them; it’s really worth it.

And by the way in my experience local TV can be good but is hard to get on board.

Book launch for ‘Jules Verne’s Mikhail Strogoff’. Photo by Sophie Masson

What’s not:

Blog tours. Great for the bloggers but a fairly large amount of work and time-consuming for the author doing the tour—as either you have to write separate guest posts or answer interview questions over the whole tour. And you can’t just recycle the same guest post, of course, or insist on the same interview questions. My experience is that the payoff in book recognition isn’t necessarily there, especially given the amount of work you have to do.

However, interviews/posts on blogs often work really well. I just think it’s better, for an author, to restrict them to one or two blogs at a time for any one book.

What’s hot:

In-person visits to schools and libraries. These small, single-author events often work much better, in my experience, than being included along with a whole lot of other authors in a festival program. Poets have long known that performance poetry events are a great place to sell books: it’s the same for authors in other genres. I like to get in touch with the local bookshop in the place I’m visiting, to see if they want to come along to the event and sell books: this is a good way of not only avoiding having to cart large numbers of books with you, but also the bookshop will continue selling them afterwards, as they have had the personal contact with you.

What’s not:

Facebook and Twitter ads. You might get thousands of ‘likes’ but not a single sale out of them; ‘organic’ or unpaid-for posts are much better, especially if you angle them less like ads and more human interest—with good photos! Instagram is a good option too, but only around photos and just a few intriguing words—not too promotey-sounding either.

What’s hot:

Reviews in good print and online journals, magazines and blogs. And good early reviews can be used as part of promotion for the book.

What’s not:

Don’t expect too much from local newspaper pieces about your new book. Unlike with radio interviews, for some reason, though people will often say they saw it in the paper, it doesn’t seem to unleash a ‘get thee to a bookshop’ type of reaction. Perhaps, as far as traditional media is concerned, the radio interview more closely resembles the ‘word of mouth’ or ‘viral’ effect that is the Holy Grail of promotion. However don’t let that put you off doing newspaper interviews—they are fun and are good to have on hand if you are putting together a promotions scrapbook.

What’s hot:

In-person book launches. They are still a lovely way to celebrate the book with your family and friends—worth organising for yourself: even if your publisher isn’t doing one, they can usually help with posters, flyers etc, electronic or print. You can also have a virtual launch of course but I’ve never organised one or found them satisfactory to attend. You may well have a different experience of course.

What’s not:

Book signings, unconnected with a launch—you rarely get enough people coming, unless it’s for an event.

What’s hot:

Posts on your own blog, if you have one, about the story behind the book—readers like to know not only about the inspiration but the process. I have found that making sure my blog has a mix of stuff about my own books and other people’s, and interviews not only with creators but also publishing professionals, brings in a lot of readers. Doing that makes the blog feel a lot less like self-promotion and more about being involved in the wider literary/publishing landscape. And that’s a lot more fun!

What’s not:

Flooding your social media networks—Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, whatever—with promotional posts about your books. People stop looking after a while.

Over to you: What’s your experience of book promotion, and do you have any other tips for what’s hot and what’s not?

By
Source: writerunboxed.com

Visit us at First Edition Design Publishing

How to Overcome the Smothering Fear of Marketing Your Writing

If there’s three words which have always brought discomfort to me as a writer, they would be ‘marketing’, ‘promotion; and ‘hustle’. They are major parts of the work of being a writer I really don’t enjoy. I know I’m not alone in that struggle either. Many of us struggle with promoting ourselves and our work, “getting attention,” as it were.

But if we want to get our work out to a wider audience, the reality is we’re going to have to market and promote our work, we’re going to have to hustle.

The big conflict I always had was how to market and promote my work authentically – to promote my work, maybe even ask people for money, but to do it with integrity, honesty, and decency. To market without being deceitful or manipulative.

But it is possible. I discovered this almost by accident.

Back in 2012 I’d been promoting my work for a year or two, using a lot of tactics used by successful bloggers to help promote my blog and increase my following – but making little headway.

Then I took some time out to connect with my true, authentic voice. And it became the most creative period of my life. Blog posts pouring out of me – often two or three drafts a day. These became not only a series of blog posts, but an e-book, ‘Dance of The Writer’, which I decided to give away free on my blog.

I used all the same tactics I’d used before – but it was different this time. I was sharing something I cared about. I was sharing something which was part of my story. I was sharing something true to me, which I genuinely wanted others to hear. I had become more interested in helping people than getting people to read my work.

And the book, the posts, connected with people. A lot of people.

Suddenly my blog following and subscriber list began growing quicker than it ever had before. My work was getting out to more people than ever. And it’s been growing steadily ever since.

Here are four basic lessons I learned in this period, and since – lessons about marketing with integrity, four key tips to overcome my fear of marketing and finally, getting attention for myself and work.

1) Serving others – The time when my platform grew the most was when I was more interested in serving others than growing a following. The people I know who grow platforms fastest are people whose heart is to serve. If all you are interested in is building your own kingdom, people will know.

2) Know your story and tell your story – Again, the time my platform grew them most, were when I was most true to my own story. Your story, your perspective is unique. It might be similar to others, but it’s uniquely yours. This is what people are dying to hear. You.

3) Be generous – When I found my story, a story I wanted to share with others and serve them with – I gave away a free e-book, and wrote blog posts, for my own blog and guest posted for others. I gave some of my best work away for free. And this makes such a difference. An e-book, guest posts, helpful FB posts, and Facebook lives are all ways to help people for free – it’s a way to give people work / advice which you could legitimately charge money for, for nothing.

4) Meet a need that you care about – one way I grew my platform more recently was by looking at a basic need people had – building a daily writing habit — and creating something which met that need, my free 31 day writing challenge. This is an area I had expertise in, a cause I cared about, part of my story, and a way to serve. It’s often where people’s needs meet with our passions, that we find our authentic voice, which makes marketing a lot easier.

If you put these four principles into practice, then marketing and promotion will come almost naturally. In my experience, when we’re really excited about a cause, when it’s part of our story, and we ally that with generosity and a desire to serve, suddenly marketing comes far more naturally.

Try putting these four principles into practice. Spend some time free writing, connect with your authentic voice, and then create and promote work you care about – and see what happens.

My bet would be marketing comes a whole lot easier when it’s a cause you care about.

What has been your experience marketing and promoting your work so far?

By Bryan Hutchinson
Source: positivewriter.com

Visit us at First Edition Design Publishing

How to Identify your Book’s Target Audience in 3 Easy Steps

“I’ve written a book with a capable heroine main character that my little sister would like… with a villain my crazy uncle would relate to… with a sci-fi setting my science teacher would get lost in… with a love interest my bff would ship… so who is my book actually for? Everyone? Or just one of these people??”

Oh yeah. We’ve all been here. Our books- like ogres- have layers. And that means they’re beautiful, complex works of art with aspects that many different people would like.

Although all those people may like your book, you can’t cast such a wide net. You need to fish with one niche lure and target that exact “perfect buyer.” So how do you do it? How do you figure out who your perfect buyer is/identify your book’s target audience?

 

Easy, friend. You simply follow these three steps:

 

  • Compare your book to similar books
  • Create your perfect buyer avatar
  • Be where your people are (and sell, baby!)

 

 

What does all this sparkly stuff mean? Let’s find out.

 

 

1. Compare Your Book to Similar Books

Now when I say “compare your book to similar books” I don’t mean the terrible thing we all do where we read an amazing book written by a best-selling author with years of experience, compare it to our own work of fiction, then immediately use our books for kindling.

 

Nah, bruh. That’s straight up unhealthy. What I mean is, dissect your book and make connections from your story to other popular novels out there. See how your work is similar to another popular work or series out there.

 

So for example, let’s say that your main character is a she-elf who lives in a magical forest. Let’s say her best bud is a morphing dragon and the two travel the world in search of lost treasure. What other books would this story most relate to?

Perhaps you thought of:

 

The Hobbit

 

The Lord of the Rings

 

Or even Eragon

 

That means the readers who loved those books would also enjoy your novel!

 

Now what if your novel has more complex elements than this? What if your book is a morph of two genres? Like a sci-fi/fantasy or a contemporary/fantasy mix? Again, always consider similarities between your book and another popular series out there. Even if your story relates to books in various genres, you are still narrowing in on a smaller audience than you might think.

 

So take a moment to write down two to three books that are similar to yoursno matter how small the similarity! What’s the point? The readership for these books are your readership too!

 

So what do you do with this information? Find forums, Facebook groups, Twitter hashtags and otherwise celebrating these books and join them! Discover why these books are so celebrated amongst your potential audience. Likewise, read one or two of these books yourself so you know what your reader expects from your story too.

 

So now that we’ve cast a smaller net and figured out a readership that is similar to your own, it’s time to think even smaller. Yep, I’m talking about one perfect reader.

 

 

2. Create your Ideal Reader Avatar

Your ideal reader is out there. But before you hunt for them, you must create them. What in the heck do I mean by that?

 

Consider right now who your ideal buyer would be: What do they do for fun? What are their favorite books? What social networks do they use? How old are they? What do they drink at Starbucks? What brands do they wear?

 

(Does any of this info really matter Rae??)

 

Believe it or not it does, precocious petunia. See, by figuring out these seemingly insignificant details about your perfect reader, you’re also figuring out who your real-life ideal buyer is too– someone who would looooove your book as much as they love playing RPGs or watching Black Panther on loop. You write for this *ONE* particular person, and you are going to sell to this sort of person as well.

 

More importantly, once you have that ideal reader avatar figured out, you can start honing in on where to find them and how to market YOUR BOOK to them in a way that will interest them. So how do you mold your ideal reader from the raw clay of imagination?? You take this free download and fill it in accordingly, friend!:

There are no right or wrong answers here. This worksheet asks the questions that matter to you as a teen-bean writer. Answer the questions based on what YOU want most in a perfect potential reader– not what you think matters most, or what you think your potential reader might be like. The more details you add, the more you’ll start to figure out who your real-life ideal reader is, where they can be found, and how you can sell your book to them!

 

Yeah, this avatar may be imaginary and yeah you may never find an exact living replica of this avatar, but you will start to figure out who your target audience is, what they generally look like, do for fun, and most importantly- what they READ!

 

 

3. Hang Where They Hang and Sell your Book, Baby!

Where are your readers gathering? What social networks are they on? If your audience is more teen based, then you’ll want to forgo networks like Facebook or Pinterest. Pay more attention to networks like Twitter, YouTube, Snapchat and Instagram instead. There are marvelous ways to connect with potential readers on these sites and pitch your book in creative ways.

 

But don’t limit yourself to just an online presence. Check out local cafes, bookstores and any other relevant shops your ideal reader might be at and ask to hang posters promoting your book. Or take it a step further and ask to display some of your books (signed) in their storefront. I know many small bookstores will support local authors so be sure to emphasize that you are a local, self-published author.

 

Take it a step further by joining book fairs, cons that your ideal reader would be at and get a booth for yourself. And don’t limit yourself to just book fairs. This is where figuring out your ideal reader’s other interests come in handy. If your ideal reader also loves Pokemon, Mega Man and Spiderman, then try to get a booth at comic con and sell your books there too. Or simply bring business cards with you to these cons, a few free books to hand out and get to know potential readers face to face in this super awesome environment! Heck, even farmer’s markets are a fantastic (and fairly cheap) way to set up a booth and get the word out there to your ideal potential reader, if that’s where they’d be found!

By Rae Elliott
Source: barelyharebooks.com

Visit us at First Edition Design Publishing

 

How to Sell Books in Your Local Community

Often times when writers dream of becoming bestselling authors, we picture worldwide success, with our novels translated into dozens of different languages and adapted into major motion pictures. One of the most important things to keep in mind, though, is that learning how to sell books is a process that starts small and, usually, starts locally.

Your Book Marketing Depends on You

Learning how to sell books is an extremely important skill as an author.

If you are a traditionally published author, you may have a team of people who will help you with marketing, but even then, it is mostly up to you to sell your work. If you are a self-published author, it is completely left to you.

Selling locally is a great way to start because it gives you an in-person advantage. You can be far more personal with people than you can ever be online, which gives a greater sense of who you are and what your books are like.

4 Ways to Sell Books in Your Community

Not sure how to sell books to the people in your local community? Here are four things you can do to get started.

1. Set up an event at your local bookstore

As scary as it can be, you have to take the first step when it comes to promoting yourself. If you wait around for someone else to invite you to an event or ask you to do a signing, you may be waiting around forever.

Take the initiative to send an e-mail or walk into your local bookstore and ask if they would consider hosting a book signing or a presentation/Q&A.

Whatever event you have in mind, make sure you have a clear idea of what it will be so you can properly pitch it. Remember to always be polite and offer the suggestion in a way that will show the bookstore how it will benefit them, as well.

Especially if it is an indie bookstore, talk about how you can promote the location and urge your readers to purchase books through them. The event should be mutually beneficial.

2. Create promotional material

There are a variety of websites you can use to create catchy posters and business cards for a relatively inexpensive price. If you are not comfortable with doing the graphic design yourself, consider asking an artistic friend for some help (make sure you pay them for their time, return the favor however you can, or at least take them out for a cup of coffee afterwards).

Once you have said posters, go to your local library and coffee shop and ask if it would be all right to hang them on their community boards. Wherever you can, put one up.

It might be a good idea to include a QR code on the post that goes to your blog or someplace where readers can easily purchase your book.

Business cards are a must, as well. Make sure they have your name, headshot, and links to your website and social media pages. Whenever you meet someone new in your community, give them a business card. It’s a great and easy way to keep in touch with new friends and let them know about your books.

3. Go to events in your community

One of the best ways to get your community connected with your book is for you to connect with your community.

Whenever there is a local, bookish event, try to attend it (and take your business cards with you!). Authors love to chat with other writers and going to a signing or release party is a great way to start networking.

Others who are attending the event are likely to be big readers, too. Talk to them! Ask them what kinds of books they like, if they’re long-time or recent fans of the author hosting the event, and so on. Once you get into a conversation, you can mention your own book and maybe even swap contact information.

Events at bookstores are not the only ones you should attend, either. Go to classes at your local library or an open mic at a coffee shop. You never know who you’ll end up talking to or who might be interested in buying your book.

4. Write an elevator pitch

These are a must for any book. Any person advising you on how to sell books will eventually tell you to write an elevator pitch.

Simply put, an elevator pitch is, as the name suggests, a pitch for your book that you can relay in the time it would take to ride an elevator with someone. It should be short and snappy, no more than a few lines.

Not sure how to get started writing your elevator pitch? Condensing your book into a one- or two-line premise is a great place to start.

After you’ve written your pitch, rehearse it until you can repeat it in your sleep. This way, when you chat with a fellow reader/writer at an author signing and they ask the inevitable question, “What’s your book about?” you won’t have to stammer and desperately search for the right words.

Writing a glowing description of your book can take days and endless revisions. You don’t have to think of it on the spot.

With an in-person pitch, though, you have to think on your feet. If you’re like me and you don’t like coming up with something on the fly, it would be a good idea to write and revise an elevator pitch you can easily memorize and repeat with a smile.

For an example of what this should look like, here is a pitch I wrote recently for one of my novels:

Lila, an immortal witch, falls for Melody, a mortal witch hunter. The two end up on the run when the demon Angelique decides Lila would be the perfect addition to her team in the upcoming apocalyptic war against humanity.

The pitch should introduce your main character(s) and the antagonist/conflict.

How to Sell Books in Person

Selling books locally is a lot different from networking online, but it comes with several advantages. People are more likely to buy your product if they feel like they have connected with you on a personal level. Plus, getting to know your readers (or potential readers) is such an important part of being an author.

And remember, it isn’t a big deal if you don’t make a sale right away. Sometimes you make a friend first, and maybe later that friend will become a customer, and a long-time fan.

How do you promote your work in your community? Do you have any other tips for how to sell books in your local community, or strategies that have worked for you? Let us know in the comments.

By The Magic Violinist
Source: thewritepractice.com

Visit us at First Edition Design Publishing

15 Marketplaces to Publish Your Poetry

Since there are hundreds of publications in the US and abroad that publish poetry, finding the perfect fit for your verses may seem a bit overwhelming. If you’ve been writing and submitting for a while now, then you already have a list of publications on-hand. If you’re yet to publish your first poem or collection of poems, then you’ll want to start conducting targeted market research.

While you may want to aim for your favorite professional-level publication, sometimes it may take a while to get into its print – or cyber – pages. It’s important to remain positive and continue to focus on your craft by attending workshops, reading articles, creating – or joining – a critique group, and so forth.

The 15 Top Marketplaces to Publish Your Poetry

 

5 Markets for Mainstream Literary Poetry

5 Markets for Minimalist Poetry

5 Markets for Science and Speculative Fiction Poetry

What to Do Before Submitting

In general, many submission guidelines encourage you to send three-to-five poems at a time. So, once you have a completed file of poems to submit, here are just a few questions to ask before submitting your work:

  • Do you know the type of poetry this publication tends to publish?
  • Are you familiar with the editors’ likes, dislikes, and pet peeves?
  • Have you checked, double- checked, and triple-checked the guidelines and followed them to the letter?
  • Have you proofed and edited your poems? Read them out loud?
  • Have you workshopped the poems, and do they represent your “best” work?

If you responded, “yes,” to the questions above, then submit your poems with a nice cover letter, when requested, and be sure to note the guidelines for these as well.

Keeping Track of Your Submissions

One way to maintain awareness of your progress and success is to create a submissions log. If you’re a prolific poet that submits work on a weekly basis, for example, then a log is a valuable tool. If you’re new to being published, then you have a visual and interactive display to note the cumulative results of your actions.

Here are just a few reasons why it’s a good to keep track:

  • You are aware of which poems are being considered and by whom.
  • You know when they’ve been submitted, which is particularly important when noting how long you need to wait before querying.
  • You don’t inadvertently simsub (i.e., submit simultaneous submissions).
  • You don’t resubmit a revised poem(s) to a publication that indicates not to do this unless invited.
  • You will be able to note which publications you’ve considered for your work, thus determining if it’s a good market fit.

While some people may use Excel or another type of software, I create tables in a Word doc. Here are the categories in my current submissions log:

  • Date submitted
  • Publication and poem titles
  • Date accepted and specific issue
  • Date rejected
  • Payment amount

Since I set up my tables to allow for additional information, I also make note of the editors’ names, website URLs, and other information, such as editor comments, which are always appreciated. In addition to my regular submissions log, I also have a month-to-month table where I track the total number of submissions, rejections, and payment.

Visualize Success

One of my favorite motivational sayings is this: “What we focus on, grows.” I keep this in mind when writing, and yes, when opening my email to an acceptance or thank-you-for-submitting-but-it’s-not-a-good-fit-for-us letter. It’s also important to stay focused when, or if, those rejection notes seem to pile up. One of my early writing mentors told me that while I may be a good writer, it would be my dedication to craft and persistence that would make a significant difference. He was right.

Here’s to your success as a poet or with any other form of writing in which you choose to engage.

Source: freelancewriting.com

Visit us at First Edition Design Publishing

15 Marketplaces to Publish Your Poetry

Since there are hundreds of publications in the US and abroad that publish poetry, finding the perfect fit for your verses may seem a bit overwhelming. If you’ve been writing and submitting for a while now, then you already have a list of publications on-hand. If you’re yet to publish your first poem or collection of poems, then you’ll want to start conducting targeted market research.

While you may want to aim for your favorite professional-level publication, sometimes it may take a while to get into its print – or cyber – pages. It’s important to remain positive and continue to focus on your craft by attending workshops, reading articles, creating – or joining – a critique group, and so forth.

The 15 Top Marketplaces to Publish Your Poetry

 

5 Markets for Mainstream Literary Poetry

5 Markets for Minimalist Poetry

5 Markets for Science and Speculative Fiction Poetry

What to Do Before Submitting

In general, many submission guidelines encourage you to send three-to-five poems at a time. So, once you have a completed file of poems to submit, here are just a few questions to ask before submitting your work:

  • Do you know the type of poetry this publication tends to publish?
  • Are you familiar with the editors’ likes, dislikes, and pet peeves?
  • Have you checked, double- checked, and triple-checked the guidelines and followed them to the letter?
  • Have you proofed and edited your poems? Read them out loud?
  • Have you workshopped the poems, and do they represent your “best” work?

If you responded, “yes,” to the questions above, then submit your poems with a nice cover letter, when requested, and be sure to note the guidelines for these as well.

Keeping Track of Your Submissions

One way to maintain awareness of your progress and success is to create a submissions log. If you’re a prolific poet that submits work on a weekly basis, for example, then a log is a valuable tool. If you’re new to being published, then you have a visual and interactive display to note the cumulative results of your actions.

Here are just a few reasons why it’s a good to keep track:

  • You are aware of which poems are being considered and by whom.
  • You know when they’ve been submitted, which is particularly important when noting how long you need to wait before querying.
  • You don’t inadvertently simsub (i.e., submit simultaneous submissions).
  • You don’t resubmit a revised poem(s) to a publication that indicates not to do this unless invited.
  • You will be able to note which publications you’ve considered for your work, thus determining if it’s a good market fit.

While some people may use Excel or another type of software, I create tables in a Word doc. Here are the categories in my current submissions log:

  • Date submitted
  • Publication and poem titles
  • Date accepted and specific issue
  • Date rejected
  • Payment amount

Since I set up my tables to allow for additional information, I also make note of the editors’ names, website URLs, and other information, such as editor comments, which are always appreciated. In addition to my regular submissions log, I also have a month-to-month table where I track the total number of submissions, rejections, and payment.

Visualize Success

One of my favorite motivational sayings is this: “What we focus on, grows.” I keep this in mind when writing, and yes, when opening my email to an acceptance or thank-you-for-submitting-but-it’s-not-a-good-fit-for-us letter. It’s also important to stay focused when, or if, those rejection notes seem to pile up. One of my early writing mentors told me that while I may be a good writer, it would be my dedication to craft and persistence that would make a significant difference. He was right.

Here’s to your success as a poet or with any other form of writing in which you choose to engage.

By Terrie Leigh Relf
Source: freelancewriting.com

Visit us at First Edition Design Publishing

Ready for More Social Media Clean-Up? Here’s How To Go About It (Part 2)

Did you do Part 1 of the social media clean-up yet? If not (and come ON already, why not? It’s not like you have writing or work to do. I mean), get on with it already. If so, yay you! I covered key updates on Twitter, Facebook, and Pinterest.

Here’s your next assignment, should you choose to accept it (sorry, had to):

  • updating Instagram,
  • LinkedIn,
  • your blog/website and
  • Amazon author bio (if you have a book out).

Let’s do this thingy.

Social Media: Instagram

Many writers and bloggers either aren’t Instagram at all, are on it and post photos of their cats (*raises hand*), aren’t sure what to post so don’t post anything, or are caught up in nothing but selfie culture (ugh).

We can do better, writer friends! Instagram is no different than any other social media channel — be strategic. Use your keywords as a basis for your personal branding. Share what makes you, you.

Key ways to update your Instagram now:

  • Is your bio complete and updated? You have 150 characters only, so make the most of them. More than anywhere else, this is especially key here as it’s the only place on Instagram where you can have an active hyperlink (links do not work in individual posts unless you are paying to advertise). What do you want to link to? I suggest your most recent release, however, some writers prefer to link to their website. Your call.
  • TIP: You can update this hyperlink frequently (if you want to), based on your sales objective. Here’s mine as an example (follows appreciated):

Ready for More Social Media Clean-Up? Here’s How To Go About It (Part 2) by @BadRedheadMedia

  • Have a giveaway or an event? Change the link on your bio.
  • Have you transitioned to a Business Profile yet? It’s free and allows you far more options! This post walks you through every step. Why bother? Paid advertising. It also links to your Facebook Author Page — if you pay for advertising on your Facebook Page, the ad also shows up on your Instagram (and vice versa).
  • Find readers using hashtags in Search. This is NEW.
  • Use pertinent hashtags in your posts to attract readers.

Social Media: LinkedIn

  • Is your bio complete and updated? This is trickier on LinkedIn — there’s a lot to fill out. Here are some key tips from Grammarly on exactly how to do that.
  • Do you need to be there at all? I get this question a lot. Well, think about this: who’s your demographic? Do they work? Probably. Are they digital readers? Probably. Boom. That’s why you should be there. It’s also a great way to connect with others in the writing and publishing community.
  • Here’s a great read on how to make the most of your bio and connections (so you don’t have to just take my word for it). Plus, if you have a side business, you can create a ‘company profile’ attached for your personal profile (e.g., my LI profile is under Rachel Thompson, and I have a BadRedhead Media Company Profile).
  • Utilize LinkedIn Pulse (their blogging section). Why? Visibility! Either take posts you’ve already written or write original content. Either way, you are helping your SEO.

Not Social Media, But Still Super Important: Your Website About Section (aka, Bio)

Little bit different format here, so stay with me. What is the point of your Author Bio? It’s not really to list all of your accomplishments like on a resume (or Tinder for you young’uns); it’s to help the reader decide whether you’re interesting enough (sad, but true) for them to pay attention to and possibly buy books from. Here are a few expert tips on writing the best bio possible from Hubspot:

  1. Always write in third person (I know it sounds weird, but think about this: people will share your bio when you do things like blog tours, guest articles, and events — so having your bio in first person will be even weirder in those situations.) TIP: Create a media kit people can download for these occasions OR give permission for people to copy/paste your information.
  2. Remember: It’s not really about you. It’s about your reader. What will they gain from reading your blog posts, articles, and books?
  3. Establish credibility — truthfully. Everything is searchable, so be absolutely truthful with everything you share in regard to your credentials (not that you shouldn’t have been before, but you know). If you share that you’ve written for Forbes, link to the article. If you cannot provide that link, do not list it in your bio.
  4. Explain what you do. Most writers will say: I’m an author. Most bloggers will say: I’m a blogger. Yea, we got that. Do this instead: What will reading your books DO for people? What will they feel? What will they learn? What problem will it solve? Food for thought.
  5. Add a CTA (Call to Action). Your bio can be an appropriate place to add a simple Q&A pitch, e.g., “Want to learn more about rocking your book marketing? Buy BadRedhead Media’s 30-Day Book Marketing Challenge here (add link).”

Finally, and most importantly, be sure your book covers, banners, visuals, and links are all updated, and do this on a regular basis. TIP: go back through your old blog posts and update your book links, book covers, etc. I’m doing that now myself since I’ve republished all my books and the old links are dead.

Amazon Author Bio

Many authors upload their books to Amazon and think, okay, cool, done. Not so fast. You need to go to Amazon Author Central and create your Author Bio. Here’s a link to Author Central and info how to do the basic set-up.

Whenever you publish (or re-publish) a book, you must claim it through author central for it to show up under your author name on Amazon (this also counts toward books you’ve contributed to, e.g., anthologies). This helps expand your backlist, makes your bio page more robust, and it’s totally legit. You did the work, so take the credit.

Other items you can (and should) add:

  • Your blog RSS feed
  • Events (e.g., speaking engagements or signings)
  • Up to eight photos — feature new books, upcoming promos or giveaways, even awards you’ve won. Remember, though: whichever photo you place in the first spot will be the one featured on your page (so if it’s an award and not your face, that’s what readers will see). **Update these photos frequently if you are using them for promos/giveaways which will be short-lived.
  • Videos – book trailers, typically, though you can share a YouTube video or FB Live video as well (or a speaking event if it fits your theme).

An important final note: all this work is for your Amazon country of origin only, meaning you need to repeat this process for international pages. You can’t do every country, but you can create additional pages in the UK, France, Germany, and Japan. Here are the links to all those Author Central sites:

I don’t personally speak French, German, and Japanese (I don’t know about you), so I hire someone who can help me. You can also use Google Translate and hope for the best.

And that’s it for now. Do the work, keep writing, and you’ll be set for 2018!

Source: badredheadmedia.com

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5 Reasons Goodreads is a Book Marketing Staple

Goodreads has mixed reviews at best when I chat book marketing strategies with authors at conferences, but I really want 2018 to be about maximizing on YOU, on using what makes you unique to sell more books, and Goodreads is a great platform for achieving that goal.

And while Goodreads has gotten a bad rap for being where books go to get slaughtered by reviews, that’s honestly not fair.

Good books and engaged authors get great reviews on Goodreads. See how that works?

So it’s time to buck up and start using Goodreads to your advantage!

Be an engaged author on Goodreads. I promise you, a good book paired with genuine engagement on…

 

And here are 5 tips to get you motivated:

It’s Not Typical Social Media

Social media is generally one of the biggest book marketing hurdles for authors that I talk to.

They either don’t have time to juggle all the platforms they signed up for, or they’re completely confused about where to start and how to keep it going.

So I suggest they focus on Goodreads.

I never recommend being on social media just to check it off your list.

If you’re not good at it, or you don’t put in the time but send people there via your website or email marketing, you’re risking doing more harm than good.

Goodreads is for readers and authors, so if you’re suffering from an aversion to social media, let Goodreads be where you focus your attention.

High Quality, High Volume Users

Another great benefit is the volume of high quality, targeted users.

Goodreads has 65 million members and counting, and guess what? They all love books!

Honestly, as authors, we couldn’t ask for a better opportunity.

Maybe your ad dollars and content on other social sites may be getting lost in the shuffle. Reach avid readers on Goodreads, guaranteed.

Groups That Get Real Engagement

Targeted reader groups are gold when it comes to book marketing and engagement,.

Talk about a captivated audience!

But here’s a dose of reality. I’ve dabbled in groups on other social sites, both personally and for my authors, and they are tough going.

Starting from scratch is never easy, and sometimes it’s really not necessary.

The reader groups on Goodreads are established, active, and users trust them. Use this to your advantage.

You Can Find the Right Readers

An extension of your group activity should be a focus on your genre as well.

And your goal shouldn’t be to sell your book but to prove you’re also a fan of your own genres (you are right?), this kind of book marketing is more about networking, and it will take you far, I assure you.

If you become “one of the diehards” in your genre groups on Goodreads you can almost guarantee your fellow groupies will support you by checking out your next release.

Participate in a genuine way. You will be genuinely rewarded.

It Can Be a Great Alternative to a Website

If you don’t have a website, or you don’t have one that you can update easily or frequently, Goodreads can be a great alternative.

You have a great section for a bio, you can create and announce events, run giveaways, host author Q&As.

You can even host your blog on Goodreads. And to make “blog” seem less scary, just think if it as regular fan and follower updates on your work, your writing schedule, giveaway promotions and release announcements. See? Fun stuff!

The Takeaway

Goodreads can be daunting, but it’s gotten a bad rap with authors and that really needs to stop.  If you need help with this magnificent tool or any other book marketing tool, contact me!

Besides, if you wanted everything to be easy you wouldn’t have decided to become a published author in the first place – because this book marketing stuff isn’t for the faint of heart – but the more you jump in feet first with these strategies, the easier they become to execute.

If you’re an author already on the Goodreads train, I’d love to hear how you’ve incorporated it into your book marketing in ways you’ve really benefit from!

Source: amarketingexpert.com

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Why (and How) to Launch Your Author Blog Before Your Book

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Some excellent advice and howtoitness over at All Indie Writer by Jennifer Mattern.

Maybe you’re writing your first book. Perhaps it’s off with your editor. In either case, you still have a ways to go before your book is in the hands of readers. That means it’s much too early to worry about setting up an author blog, right?

Wrong.

You don’t need to wait until your book launch to set up an author blog. In fact, you shouldn’t wait this long if you want your blog to help you boost book sales at launch time.

Author Blog vs Author Website

Worried about launching a blog because you aren’t ready to launch your ideal author website?

Don’t be.

Sure. Your author website will have more than a blog. You’ll want everything from your author bio to book sales pages. But there’s no reason you can’t give that website a jump start by focusing on your author blog.

Read the rest at All Indie Writer

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What to Do When You Don’t Know What to Blog About

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Publisher – Aggregator – Master Distributor

 

Self-publishing experts agree blogging is a great way to connect with your readers as well as keeping the writing gears well oiled. Here are some great ideas for blogging and writing from a terrific blogging website:

 

If you’re reading this, it means you blog.

5 proven strategies for defeating writer's block for bloggers

Obviously.

You’re a blogger. You’re a content marketer considering blogging as part of your marketing strategy. You’re a fiction writer considering blogging as a good way to communicate with readers or promote your book.

Whoever you are, if you create online content you constantly need ideas and plans to answer these eternal questions:

What to blog?

What content to share with readers?

What to write?

It’s a big problem for many bloggers, especially those believing the more often they write and publish, the better. As a result, they experience writer’s block, they procrastinate or sacrifice quality for quantity, and they eventually become sick and tired of blogging.

Sounds familiar?

If so, don’t panic!

This article will reveal all secrets of coming out with great ideas for your blog, and it will tell you what to do when you are stuck and don’t know what to write.

Let’s get started…

 

 

Get started blogging about your book(s) and read the rest at Be a Better Blogger

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