I HAVE FINALLY FOUND MY CALENDAR!!!! *golden light shines on said calendar as angelic voices sing in the background* Now, to catch up on all of the posts I have missed. A million and one apologies to my guest bloggers and all my followers. So without further ado, you all will be getting more than the usual two posts this week. YAY! So be prepared to have some great information coming your way.
Today I have Margo Dill on my blog. She is going to share some thing you SHOULD NOT DO when marketing yourself and your books. Whew! Glad to get that out there. I know #2 was (and still can be) a biggie for me. But I am learning to toot my own horn and get my name and my books out there.
Feel free to leave a comment or ask a question. We always enjoy hearing what you think.
Five Things You Should Never Do When Marketing Your Book
By Margo L. Dill
My first book, a middle-grade historical fiction book titled Finding My Place: One Girl’s Strength at Vicksburg, came out from White Mane Kids in October 2012. (By the way, you should check it out here: http://margodill.com/buy-finding-my-place/, but after you’re done reading this post first, or course.) To say I’ve learned a lot about marketing in a very short time is an understatement. Everyone talks about how quickly the world of publishing is changing; well, so is the world of marketing. Authors that marketed a book even three years ago are going to have to change their ways for future books. So, I’m here to help, thanks to Tracey!, and am going to share these five things you should NEVER do when marketing a book:
Keep Your Book a Secret
If you don’t tell people you wrote a book and it’s out, no one else will. Okay, so maybe your mom and your spouse (if he/she is hoping for some royalty money)—but no one else. I understand that it’s hard as an introverted writer to shout from the rooftop that you’ve written a book, but that’s exactly what you need to do. When someone asks: “What’s new with you?” Say, “I wrote a book.” Most people will then ask you about it. Put it on your Facebook page, your website, and your Pinterest board. Practice in the mirror, “I wrote a book.”
Worry You are Offending or Bothering Someone
Other writers do not worry about this at all. Every chance they get, they are sending out newsletters, handing out business cards, writing about their books on Facebook, and sharing reviews on Twitter. You have to do this, too. Listen, if someone is offended and thinking, You know, Margo is a real blow-hard. She is always talking about that Civil War book of hers, then that person can un-follow me or de-friend me. I won’t even notice; and honestly, I don’t care. I make sure that I support other writers and share a lot of information and books, too. So when I want to talk about my books, I’m going to!
Buy Ads in Print Magazines
I apologize to anyone who has a print magazine. I do not think print is dead. I write for a newspaper. But as an author, you’re wasting your money if you buy an ad in a print magazine. You are better off spending money on some bookmarks you can hand out personally when you talk about your book. Really. VERY FEW people buy a book because they saw an ad about it in a magazine. VERY FEW. How many books would you have to sell to make enough royalties to cover the cost of the ad? Now, if someone wants to interview you or pay you to write an article and mention your book, say YES!
Although I’m a reviewer and would love to be bribed (with wine), obviously you cannot do this. So many people are trying to get reviewed by big name newspapers, and this is going by the wayside. Instead, ask people to read your book and write a review on Amazon if they have time. Find bloggers who have a good following and ask them for a review. This is the new way to go. Don’t send a newspaper book reviewer your book with a box of chocolates. Really, it won’t matter.
Spend All Your Time Marketing and Not Writing
Some people love marketing as much as they love researching. Actually some writers will do anything to not have to write. . . but one of the best ways to increase book sales is to have another book out there. If readers like your first book (series or not), they might just pick up your second or third book, too, because they like you as an author. So, find time to write, even if it’s just 15 minutes a day. Your first book serves as a marketing tool for the rest of your work!
I’d love to hear your tips! What’s worked for you or hasn’t? (And don’t forget to check out FINDING MY PLACE at http://margodill.com/blog/buy-finding-my-place –I’m not annoying you now, am I?)