If you’ve been in the indie game--or publishing in general--you’ve heard about email lists. We have several articles about them on this site because it’s the most effective way to build an author career.
But not all email subscribers are created equal. You may have noticed this already. If you have an email list of 7k that are all Freeloaders, you won't sell many books and might be frustrated with publishing and book marketing in general. That's why I wrote this article. I’m going to go through the different levels of subscribers how to get the ones you want and how to avoid the ones you don’t.
Having a tagline seems like such an after-thought--after all, you wrote an awesome back copy, so why do you need to further condense your story into a single line? Well, taglines are versatile and a good one helps you turn the corner on sales and professionalism. We’ve all experienced the deer-in-the-headlights moment when someone finally asks what we write and we just blink and stare and mutter. It's great to have a rehearsed line to whip out when our brains blue-screen, plus it shows we’ve done our research and have confidence in our work.
Outreach is the best way to grow your organic traffic and build your brand. Podcasts are huge right now so it just makes sense for authors to take advantage of this. Here are the things we’ve realized are really important after seven months of podcasting.
We all know book reviews play an important part in algorithms and reader buying decisions. And one of the ways to get reviews is to pitch your title to book review blogs. But how do you deicde who's worth your time and effort?
You spend a year or two or maybe 32, writing and perfecting your craft, slap a cover on it, publish on Amazon and rake in the doe.
I hate to burst your bubble. But no.
Book marketing can be a complicated beast but it doesn’t have to be. Your author platform is what you use to sell your books. Once you’ve designed (Or paid someone to design) a fantastic cover, and chosen the perfect software for your email list.
There’s this thing lurking in the author community. It’s a little bit of misinformation. Not the malicious or deviant kind. In fact, most of the time it’s given with the best of intentions. However, it’s still not accurate.
One the most common questions I get as a book marketer is “When should I start marketing?” and the normal answer, others like to give is “When the book is done.”. That makes a lot of sense and takes a load off the people who hate marketing anyway but if you want your first book to make a splash and reach a lot of readers, then that’s a huge mistake. Unless you’re comfortable sitting on it for a few years while you build up your platform.
How much money do you spend on advertising? How about promotions? Do you experience a bump in sales only to have them drop off again? Do you ask yourself “What’s the point?” More than once a day? I’ve been there too. I worked my way out of the habit of spending money to barely make it back (if I did make it back). It was hard. The temptation to get that high from seeing sales in your dashboard is incredibly powerful. But if you want to build a business that will last you need to find those core fans. Organic traffic is the word of the day here. How do you get organic traffic to your site? That’s where strategy comes in. Long term goals and things that will grow your readership over time. Ads, promos, and even keyword optimization are all examples of tactics. They have their place in the grand scheme that is book marketing but you need to take a step back and look at the big picture. Is what you’re doing helping in the long term? If you get someone to buy your book do you have permission to contact them about your new release?
I was giving into resistance the other day on Twitter and saw that Belinda Griffin of Smart Authors Lab wrote a post on her key takeaways from our time in Nashville with Tim Grahl. I really clicked with Belinda while we were there because we were both freezing in the AC, so every lunch break we went for a walk before sitting down (or not) to eat. I’d been wanting to write up something similar but was at a loss about how to go about putting that experience into a single or even a series of posts. So I read Belinda’s. Her takeaways were completely different from mine. Which is possibly one of the best things about the whole trip. So here are my key takeaways from my time with Tim and I’ve linked to Belinda’s below. Please read both posts and let it all soak in.
All these posts have been to help you set up Tim Grahl’s Connection System. So how do we connect with readers? Through outreach to influencers. Outreach is how you drive traffic to your newly optimized site and get new subscribers to your list and new readers to your books.
Are you looking for help with your platform and book marketing? Marissa is now scheduling free publishing consultations! Click here to learn more.