Marketing – a word avoided and even feared by many writers. Most of us are shy retiring types to whom blowing our own trumpet is akin to running down the main street stark naked.
But it’s more important now than ever. Even if you’re published by a legacy publisher, there’s a limit to how much marketing they will do for you, especially if you’re a new author.
And if you’re self-publishing an e-book it’s essential. There are so many books in the marketplace competing for readers’ attention that you have to work hard to make sure your book is noticed.
There are three facets of book marketing that are vital:
It takes time to find and come to the attention of your target market – ie people who enjoy the genre you write in and are potential buyers.
2. Have an online presence – website, blog, social media, writers forums, book reviews, guest post on blogs.
There are endless ways but the first three are the basics. If you don’t have a website and blog, and do at least some basic social media, you’re behind the eight ball before you start.
3. Connect with other writers and readers by means of the above tools – post regular blogs and invite comments, start an email sign up list to your blog by offering a free product, eg a short e-book on a topic of interest to your readers, post regularly on social media, contribute to writers forums, write reviews of books.
Connecting is the secret to effective marketing. Doing the hard sell will alienate people and if you’re only connecting with them to sell your book they’ll soon realise it and turn off. Being genuine is important.
Besides, connecting with other writers is fun and helpful, because exchanging ideas, tips and the ups and downs of the creative life will not only improve your writing but give you support and motivation – and we all need plenty of that. Not all readers are writers but most writers are avid readers, and sooner or later you’ll find and connect with those who’ll be interested in buying your book.
‘How am I going to find time to do all this and write?’ I hear you wail.
By taking it slowly so it doesn’t overwhelm you. Next post I’ll share my start-up marketing plan.
Do you have any thoughts on marketing or experiences to share? I’d love to hear them.
Robin Storey is an Australian author from the Sunshine Coast in Queensland, Australia. She is a certified book nerd and has no weird hobbies or unusual pets.