Tag Archives: Marketing strategies

Something new…part 2

Last week I wrote a blog post about a new marketing strategy  I’ve adopted to connect with new readers ( and old ones, too!). Facebook Live Videos. 

If you know one thing about me, you know that I absolutely cringe when I see myself on film and hear myself on audiotape. A perpetually scratchy, whiney voice plus a really crooked face are the reasons I never went into the performing/visual arts. In all honesty, people would have paid me to NOT speak.

But….

In this ever-changing-by-the-minute publishing industry I am now immersed in, I need to not only frequently connect with the people who are already reading my books, but with new readers who haven’t heard of me yet. To that end I’ve been taking a month long author marketing class. It was here I first heard about author facebook live videos for promotion.

 

Now that I’ve started doing the videos, the next step, according to the marketing guru I’ve been listening to, is to find alternate ways of promoting them. Facebook is great, but you want to increase traffic to those videos, and not have them seen by just the people who are already your “friends” nor do you want to solely depend on those friends to share the vids with their friends who might not be your friends.

Confused? Think how I feel.

Next step, then, is to offer them on a bigger, wider, platform. Well, what platform for videos is bigger and wider than You Tube?

Yup, peeps. I’ve become a You-Tube queen. I actually, freely, and of my own volition, put my crooked mug – my videoed crooked mug – on display for all the world to view and comment on. Butterflies have nothing on the nerves flapping in my stomach.

But I’ll be honest and tell you that first video I did had more hits, likes, and shares than any  post I’ve written or put up in over a year, so yay for that!

I’ve added the youtube link to my “find me here” spiel at the bottom of most of my blog pieces and I’m hoping that people who have no idea who I am click on that link if they read one of my  posts.

It seems that the marketing and promo end of the publishing-a-book-business is never going to end for me, so I’m trying to embrace it as best  I can. And I’m smiling while I do it. Well….trying to smile and not cry, at least.

 

If you’re looking for me, here I am: Tweet Me//Read Me// Visit Me//Picture Me//Pin Me//Friend Me//Google+Me// Triber// BookMe // Monkey me //Watch me

 

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Filed under Author, Author Branding, author promotion, Romance

Something new….

I’ve been taking an online marketing course for the past 11 days and one of the biggest takeaways from the guy giving the course has been how to connect with people and readers in a more personal way. Since I live in the woods in a tiny New England town and I don’t get out much because, you know….writing…connecting with and meeting new people has been a problem for me. I can’t afford to attend every single book signing out there or travel to every conference.

Really, all I want to do is write.

But…

This is the age of easy access to people via the internet, so I’ve moved into the twenty-first century and tried something new, something the course director says should boost my online presence ( read:book sales!) if done correctly.

I can only hope I’ve done it correctly. Hee hee.

So, long story short, I did my very first FACEBOOK LIVE EVENT yesterday. It was terrifying, just me, sitting in front of the laptop, talking. Terrifying, I tell you.

I don’t even like to get my picture taken much less be videoed.

But….

I made it a short piece ( 10 minutes) and talked all about something near and dear to me, the Great American Read blog I’d done that morning. I’d had the forethought to make a few notes on what I wanted to say so that made it easier. I will admit I rambled a bit and if you watch the video you can hear me clicking my pen nervously off camera – something that sounds really loud to me.  I had someone else tell me they didn’t hear it at all, so I hope that’s true for the masses.

Depending on the response I get to the video (and this blog, talking about it) I will do another. Everything horrifying always gets better when you do it a few times, right?

Okay, let’s be real here because this is me: I’m never going to be comfortable being videoed. Not gonna happen in this lifetime. All I can see when I watch it is how crooked my face is, how my left eye is ridiculously smaller than my right, and my neck is starting to resemble the Thanksgiving turkey I’m going to serve this year. Add in the fact my voice sounds like a million pointy nails scratching against chalkboard and you can understand why I didn’t pursue any type of career in the performing arts. If you do watch it I suggest you keep the volume low so that my voice doesn’t annoy you too much.

And if you do watch it...BLESS YOU. If it’s something that you find either funny, interesting, worth the ten minutes you lost watching it, I’d really appreciate it if you could either pass the link on to your friends, or drop me a word or two in the comments section either here, or on my FB page, telling me your thoughts and reactions. I’m not being falsely humble and fishing for compliments, peeps. I truly need advice on how to do this better and more effectively.

So. I’m off to do the one thing that doesn’t give me agita: write.

When I’m not making myself nervous about public speaking you can find me here::Tweet Me//Read Me// Visit Me//Picture Me//Pin Me//Friend Me//Google+Me// Triber// BookMe // Monkey me //Watch me

 

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Do I have a backlist?

At RWA 2018 I attended a workshop about making the most of your backlist, and by making the most the presenter meant sales. So, this is good question for a writer to be asking him or herself.

So, what is a backlist? Well, it’s a publisher’s list of older books still in print. The definitive word in that sentence is older. But what constitutes older? How many years or even decades is considered enough for a book to be truly defined as backlisted? 

I’m asking this because I had my very first book published in 2015. That’s only 3 years ago. (Sometimes, it seems like 300, but that’s just me!) Now, in no one’s mind would 3 years past be considered old. But, believe it or not, in the publishing industry, it is. The reasons vary, but if you’ve ever heard this phrase: You’re only as good as your last book – you’ll know it’s true, because each time a writer releases a new book, that becomes the yardstick readers measure you by because it’s the most current, and available in the here and now.

I realize what I just wrote may be a little convoluted, so let me ‘esplain.

Most well-known writers put out a book a year, maybe 2, or if you’re Jill Shalvis or Nora Roberts, 4 or more! I’m not either, but since 2015 I’ve averaged 3 a year. This year it’ll be four, which is giving me agita even as I write this.

But I digress…

Since most authors have a lag period of about 6-12 months between releases, they don’t have much to promote while they are writing/editing/editing some more/ their coming soon book. Here’s where the back list comes in. I’m going  use myself here s an example because it’s easier. My first book, Skater’s Waltz, released in March 2015.

It was promoted heavily for a few months until my second book came out. Same scenario until my third book released. By the time the 4th and 5th books went out into the world, no one was  hearing about Book 1 which started the entire 5 book series.

So. With each new addition to the series, I tweeted/facebooked/instagrammed – you get the picture: I used my social media sites – to REMIND people about the first book, the one that started the series ( and my new life!) and put all the buy links up with each promo. I was lucky enough that each time I had a new book come out, I also had people buying the previous books because of that promo. I’ve written my series as stand alone books, which means you don’t need to read the one before the newest one to know what’s going on, but readers still went ahead and purchased those previous books.

In essence, this was me promoting my backlist.

Another way to get readers to read the books that came before your soon to be released one and utilize your back list effectively is to have a sale. Each time my newest book was a month or so from release date, I asked my publisher(s) to put the previous book I released on sale and then promoted the sale to try and garner new readers. It worked.

This holiday season I have a new San Valentino Christmas story coming out called CHRISTMAS and CANOLLIS. I don’t have the exact release date yet, but when I do I’ll be having a sale of my previous San Valentino Christmas Story A KISS UNDER THE CHRISTMAS LIGHTS to try and get people interested in the new book.

The theory if you like this one, you’re sure to like that one, is the prompt for this. BTW – just a little side note: I’m having a cover reveal of Christmas and Canollis soon, so stay tuned!!!

Get the idea now of why a backlist is important to promote if you’re an author? And it doesn’t matter if your backlist is from 1 year ago and has 2 books on it, or 10 years ago with 30. ALL your books should be promoted as frequently as you’re comfortable doing.

Backlists. They’re a good thing for a writer.

When I’m not pushing, er promoting my backlist, you can find me here:Tweet Me//Read Me// Visit Me//Picture Me//Pin Me//Friend Me//Google+Me// Triber// BookMe

 

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So…my weekend

There really should be something done about lousy internet in hotels and conferences! I was at a fabulous conference this weekend and couldn’t blog about it because it took FOREVER to get connected to WiFi. Oh well…better late than never.

Friday night I took a master class with marketing guru Jane Friedman. It quite literally changed the way I view all the social media stuff I have to do as a writer who wants to get her book in front of strangers. For two hours she spoke about all the ways a writer can engage readers and get them to — not only visit their websites — but purchase their work.

First things first. Your website. You’re reading this so obviously you stopped here! But how did you find out about the website? Did you see a Twitter mention of it? Catch it in a newsfeed roll on my Facebook Author page? Or do you Follow me on WordPress? Since I don’t have a newsletter ( a major faux pas in Jane’s opinion), I don’t have a one-on-one way to let people know about new content on my site. I’ve debated for several years about having one because it’s just one more thing I have to do, but she says the benefits are worth it.

Next. The website content, itself. I don’t update my website frequently except for the blogs. My banner, headers, widgets, etc., are all pretty stagnant. And that’s the kind of traffic you never want: stagnant. You want your website to be fluid, moving, and new. So, Saturday morning between the hours of 1 am and 4 am ( since I never sleep. Damn this menopause insomnia!) I updated my website. I added a new category, changed the banner and some of the graphics, and posted new info on the pages.

Last. Your work. Or in my case, my books. It’s inconceivable to me that I never thought of this, but nowhere on my website was there a page for a reader to purchase my books. Not even a direct link except if I was blogging about the book. So, ta-da- new page. MY BOOKS lists all my work from newest to oldest, the covers, and all the buy links across the e-book network and traditional publishers. Whew! That was a ton of work but I think it’ll be so worth it in the end, especially when I start to see an uptick in sales.

Jane spoke of several other ways to drive traffic to your work that I’ll be discussing tomorrow. Today I wanted to focus on the website itself.

When I’m not attending conferences of updating my website, you can find me here: Tweet Me//Read Me// Visit Me//Picture Me//Pin Me//Friend Me//Google+Me// Triberr

 

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