Monday, April 27, 2015

Marketing and Promotion

As a child I knew I wanted to be an author. I would daydream about writing my novels on a typewriter out of the back of a van that was parked beside the banks of a rushing river. In those long evenings I didn't have to worry about how people would learn about the books I wrote. There weren't hours spent setting up tours and what not. I was just an author.

That was a great dream and while I still have hope that I'll end up writing next to a river, I've learned that dreams are often different from reality. The publishing world is evolving and now an author also has to double as their own publicist. So I've gotten together a few marketing tips I've picked up.

Social Media

With Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and an assortment of never ending social networks for you to explore you're sure to find a spot somewhere. Of course there is a right way and a wrong way. Instead of just posting endlessly about why readers should buy your books it's better to interact with your followers and fans. Post interesting articles that are relevant to your genre. Find groups of readers and talk about other books your enjoy. It's slow going but in time you'll build up a following of your own.

Free Listings

I don't mean your book is going to be free so list it with as many "free book listings" as possible. That's nice, but there are places you can list your book for free. Places like Goodreads, BookLikes and Library Thing are perfect for categorizing your books and getting them out there for readers to find. There are also places that are genre specific that put books in front of targeted readers. For romance authors sites like WantonReads and Pretty-Hot will post a bit of information about your novel and you as the author.

Local Interest

If you're only published in an eBook format, like myself, you may think that networking in the offline world is pointless. It is hard. You don't have a hard copy of your novel and people don't pay as much attention, but it is doable. Have some bookmarks printed out and keep them handy in case you run across someone interested in your novels. You can also look into local book clubs. If they're reading a book your interested in reading then jump on board and interact. Don't push your novel, but if anyone asks offer a bookmark.

These are just a few things I've learned about marketing and promotion. There are tons of other things that can be done to get a novel out there, but it all takes time and there is no magic wand. I'm still learning and the publishing world is still evolving. If anyone has any tips or interesting marketing methods feel free to share ideas in the comments.

Peace and Love

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