But on the bright side, there are many tools and hacks out there to help you speed up your productivity. I’ll get into the writing-specific ones first. Continue reading
With that in mind, here’s a compilation of tips and tools that can help you with your book promotion efforts. Continue reading
Launching today is BuzzTrace, a new platform that helps authors find their audience and increase their book sales. BuzzTrace connects with social media platforms and provides authors with insightful analytics on how to help sell their books. The site also gives authors tips on how to grow their audience. Scott La Counte, a best selling author, said he co-founded BuzzTrace to help authors save time on marketing, so they can focus on their writing. Authors can sign up for a one-month free trial at BuzzTrace.
Read on for an interview with Scott La Counte to learn more about the platform. Continue reading
- Holiday Book Marketing: An Author’s Guide to Black Friday and Beyond on Written Word Media
- The Ultimate Holiday Promotion Calendar on A Marketing Expert
- Five Holiday Marketing Trends that Authors Can Use for Book Promotion on Written Word Media
Growing Traffic and Followers
- 7 Powerful Social Media Experiments That Grew Our Traffic by 241% in 8 Months on Buffer
- 7 Tips + Tricks Pinterest Pros Use to Grow Their Followers on XO Sarah
- The Best Time to Tweet
- How Authors Can Get More Fans and Book Sales with Less Social Media on Digital Book World
- Instagram Hashtags for Bloggers That Will Triple Likes on Venus Trapped in Mars
- The social media schedule that will increase your traffic by over 100% on A Branch of Holly
- How to Generate Leads on Facebook on Duct Tape Marketing
- Everything You Need To Know About Twitter Dashboard on Dustn
- How and Why You Should Be Using Instagram Stories on Alex Tooby
- How to Create Instagram Stories on Social Media Examiners
- 5 Growth Hacks That Continuously Deliver Results on Jeff Bullas
- 3 Ways To Grow Your Traffic Without Google Search on Twelve Skip
- 30 Tricks for Increasing Social Media Engagement on Chloe Social
- How to Grow Your Business with Twitter on The Haute Notes
- Grow Your Instagram Following With Hashtags on Morgan Timm
- A Simple, Stress-Free Social Media Strategy to Consistently Grow Your Brand on Devan Danielle
- How I Turned a Viral Pin Into 600+ Email Subscribers in One Week on XO Sarah
- The No-BS Guide to Increasing Engagement on Your Website on Jeff Bullas
- Earning an Audience: How to be Irresistible + Grow Your Brand Online on Olyvia
BookBub Tips and Tricks
- 11 BookBub Myths Busted on BookBub
- Authors on Twitter: 43 Stunning Header Image Examples on BookBub
- How Successful Authors Use Social Media: 23 Content Ideas on BookBub
- Tutorial: How to Use BookBub Ads to Promote Any Book on BookBub
- 9 Ways to Market a Book After the New Release Buzz Dies Down on BookBub
- 17 New Release Marketing Examples We Love on BookBub
- 20 Fantastic BookBub Author Profile Examples on BookBub
- BookBub Featured Deals vs. BookBub Ads: What’s the Difference? on BookBub
- Marketing a New Book Release that’s Part of a Long Series on BookBub
- How to Test Your BookBub Ad Designs to Get Better Results on BookBub
- How Marketing Goals Affect BookBub Ad Campaigns [Infographic] on BookBub
- How to Know If Your Book Marketing Campaigns Made Money on BookBub
Working with People
- 4 Valuable Hacks For Getting More People To See What You Create on Patreon
- Publicity Secrets Revealed: Why You Need a Press Kit for These 5 Important People on DIY Author
- How to Pitch Book Bloggers on Publisher’s Weekly
- How to Find and Reach Influencers to Help Promote Your Book on Jane Friedman
- Testimonials – Why You Need Them and How To Get Them! on BrandIt Girl
- Reader Reviews: More Ways to Get Them on BookWorks
- Reviews 101: What Information Do I Need to Have Ready When Contacting Reviewers? on The Verbs
Trends and New Stuff
- 5 Online Marketing Trends Authors Should Consider on Digital Book World
- Marketing in the Stream on Scholarly Kitchen
- My SnapChat Tutorial on Podcast Answerman
- Three changes in marketing on Seth Godin
- Book Cover Redesign as Marketing Tool on Jane Friedman
- How Newsworthy Are You: 4 Ways to Get Book Publicity on Ingram Spark
- Six gems about Marketing that may seem obvious, but are you really acting on them? on Book Machine
- 5 Tools That Can Double Your Ebook Sales on Digital Book World
- 6 Free And Unique Tools To Engage With Your Audience on Patreon
- The Author’s Guide to Book Marketing: Part 1 on Digital Book World
- The Author’s Guide to Book Marketing: Part 2 on Digital Book World
- 21 Things You Can Automate in Your Creative Business on Nesha Woolery
- Self Publishing Hacks No One Tells You About on Writing by the Seat of my Pants
- How do you promote on Kobo? on Patty Jensen
- The Business Rusch: Pricing (Discoverability Part 7) on Kris Writes
- The Business Rusch: Pricing Part 2 Or (Discoverability Part 7 Continued) on Kris Writes
- 88 Books in 20 Months: The Inside Story of a Bestselling Author’s Marketing Strategy on Digital Book World
- How To Hit The USA Today Bestseller List As A Single Author With Ad Stacking on The Creative Penn
Google Plus is a social media platform that is not as talked about as Facebook or Twitter, but can be very important, depending on your niche.
Google Plus Basics
For those who may not be too familiar with Google Plus, here are a few of the basics. First, you fill out a profile, with a picture, a cover image, and whatever information you feel comfortable sharing about yourself. After you create a personal profile, you can create a business profile, or page, such as the one for my side project, I Know Dino. Continue reading
Happy 2015! To kick off the year, I’m starting a series of posts that focus on using social media. Today is all about Pinterest.
Pinterest is all about sharing (or pinning) images, and there are many ways indie authors can use this social media platform to their advantage. You can pin images to different boards, and tailor your boards to different interests. Continue reading
Next up in the Indie Author Marketing Guide series is Goodreads. Goodreads is a social network for book lovers, now owned by Amazon. Users can join groups, follow authors, rate and review books, compile lists of read books, and promote books with giveaways.
According to The Creative Penn, “Goodreads’ recommendation engine is an algorithm similar to Netflix” and “A book does need to get a few hundred ratings before it gets into the recommendation engine.” It’s also helpful to fully fill out the author profile portion of your account, and combine editions of your book.
One of the best features of Goodreads is the giveaway feature. Keep in mind that the giveaway is for physical books, and you will be responsible for mailing them to the winners. There are a lot of articles out there with tips on how to run a successful giveaway, but here are a couple links with a lot of especially useful information:
“Goodreads Giveaways: Don’t Do What You’re Told” on Catherine, Caffeinated
“How To Promote Your Self-published Book – Unorthodox Advice! Part One” by Pedro Barrento
You should read the full articles, but some of the tips include how to determine the number of books to giveaway (less than 10 is actually ideal), why the process is worth doing, when to run a giveaway (Mondays are great), and how many entries to expect.
Like Amazon, Goodreads is a great place to get ratings and reviews. In late 2013, Goodreads changed its review policy so that comments primarily about an author, instead of the book, would be deleted.
Finding relevant groups to join is another great feature of Goodreads. There are many groups dedicated to indie authors supporting each other, where they share with each other ideas for marketing and promoting books.
Because Goodreads is so data heavy, the site gathers and aggregates a lot of information about people’s reading habits, and occasionally they share that data. Here’s an infographic depicting reasons why people stop reading certain books.
Goodreads also lets authors connect with readers with their “Ask the Author” feature.
If you’re looking for more ideas on how to use Goodreads effectively, check out The Ultimate Goodreads Guide for Authors (Building Blocks to Author Success Book 4) by Barb Drozdowich and Babs Hightower.
And if you have any other ideas for how to use Goodreads, please share in the comments!
Editor’s note: This post originally appeared January 2015, as part of the Indie Author Marketing Guide series.
For indie authors, Facebook is one of the best ways to reach your audience. As of April 2016, Facebook has 1.65 billion monthly active users and 1.09 billion people logging in daily, according to Zephoria.
With that in mind, it’s probably safe to say that if you’re reading this, you are at least familiar with Facebook. Continue reading
Here are a few things I’ve learned along the way. (And if you want guidance on how to overcome the feeling of being overwhelmed, read Your Writer Platform’s “Are You Building Your Writer Platform at Gunpoint?“)
Don’t use social media just to sell books
Kristen Lamb’s “Social Media, Book Signings & Why Neither Directly Impact Overall Sales” goes into depth on why this is not a good strategy, but basically you don’t want to spam people/just make noise, and you will not develop any real relationships this way (meaning, you won’t attract real fans).
Rachel Thompson suggests spending more time online finding people who may be willing to review your books, and she gives a list of suggestions in her article “Why ‘Read My Book!’ Doesn’t Work…And What To Do Instead”
Focus on one or two platforms first, then build from there
Facebook. Twitter. Instagram. Pinterest. Google. Youtube. Goodreads. LinkedIn. Tumblr. The list goes on and on. You can be active on all these channels, but it’s probably best to pick one or two and work on growing an audience there first. Every social media channel works a little differently, caters to a different audience, and has savvy users who expect others to use the network a certain way. The Book Designer’s “Do You Make These Online Marketing Mistakes?” offers tips, such as establishing one audience per channel and using landing pages.
Social Media Just for Writers also recommends researching your target market and then choosing your social media platform based on that in “How to Stop Wasting Time and Focus Your Book Marketing.” For advice on Facebook, Twitter, Tumblr, Pinterest, and YouTube, read DBW’s “The Book Marketing Social Media Hierarchy: Which Sites to Use for Which Purposes.”
Business Insider broke down the demographics of some of the social media platforms. According to them, the 45- to 54-year-old demographic is growing, “27% of 18 to 29-year-olds in the U.S. use Twitter,” LinkedIn and Google+ are mostly male, Pinterest is mostly women on tablets, and Tumblr is mostly teens and young adults.
Eventually you can expand into other platforms. For a case study on why, read Kate Tilton’s “Why I Use Different Social Media Networks (And You Should Too) by @K8Tilton.”
For help determining which platform is best for you, read these articles:
- “Instagram: Should You Be On It?” on Indies Unlimited
- “How Tumblr Turned a Book Into a Bestseller” on GoodeReader
- “Pinterest Unveils Buyable Pins, A Way To Purchase Things Directly Within Pinterest” on TechCrunch
- “Pinterest Update: More Ways Authors Can Use Pinterest!” on Writers Win
- “Indie Author Marketing Guide: Pinterest” on Musings and Marvels
- “How I Made it to the Front Page of BuzzFeed Twice, and How You Can Too” on Matthew Barby
- “Surprising News in Social Media – And a Twitter Tip” on Social Media Just for Writers
- “Indie Author Marketing Guide: Twitter” on Musings and Marvels
- “Guest Post: 8 Secrets to Increase Your Twitter Followers” on Musings and Marvels
- “Guest Post: What Everybody Ought To Know About Facebook Account Management” on Musings and Marvels
- “Guest Post: Want to Step Up Your Facebook?” on Musings and Marvels
- “Indie Author Marketing Guide: Goodreads” on Musings and Marvels
- “Indie Author Marketing Guide: LinkedIn” on Musings and Marvels
- “Indie Author Marketing Guide: Google Plus” on Musings and Marvels
- “Which Social Media and Marketing Tools Are Publishers Actually Using Successfully” on DBW
Strategize how you will build your platform
Erindor Press’s “Platform Building Primer” is a good start, and advocates setting expectations and figuring out the best way to share content, either via blogging, email newsletters, or something else (and you can use social media to promote that content).
The Loneliest Planet shared a post, called “One Writer’s Platform (Part 2) Events and PR,” which goes over techniques of marketing offline (such as doing public readings and lectures) but also adds that it’s worth taping these performances and uploading them to Youtube to share.
Use lots of images/visuals
People tend to engage more with posts, tweets, etc. that are visual. According to Rebekah Radice’s “5 Steps to Get Massive Engagement With Your Visual Content,” “43% of social media users share pictures.” She recommends having consistent colors, using templates, appropriate fonts, and to create infographics, images, and videos.
Build Book Buzz recommends creating different types of images, including picture quotes, tipographics, and infographics. For tips on how to actually create these images, read Social Media Just For Writer’s “Writers: Use Visuals to Market Your Books.”
Make use of social media tools
Here’s a list of resources, along with helpful tips and links to additional tools:
- Kate Tilton Social Media Resources
- Kate Tilton Authors on Instagram
- Kate Tilton Book Bloggers on Instagram
- Social Media Examiner
- Magnolia Media Network
- Books Go Social
Keep up to date on new platforms and tools
Lastly, the social media landscape is constantly changing, so it’s good to stay up to date. One example of a relatively new tool/platform is Aerbook, which according to PW turns social media into a virtual bookstore. Earlier this year, Social Media Just for Writers wrote about how indie authors can use Aerbook, which allows you to share previews and even sell ebooks on social media networks, as well as see analytics on your shares.
According to the article, there are three product plans to choose from:
Aerbook Retail is free, no credit card required. It gives you the social look inside the book, email capture popups within the sample, stats on how the book is used, and the ability to share the link and also get web page widgets that launch the Aerbook. This plan lets you sell the book directly through Aerbook, and our service earns 15% of the purchase price after credit card fees are deducted.
Aerbook Plus gives you everything Aerbook Retail delivers, plus lets you add links to other retailers, like Amazon, iBooks, or even your own purchase page. Aerbook Plus is $49 per year.
Aerbook Flyer includes everything above, but there’s no direct sale through Aerbook’s commerce service. You’ll add links to other retailers. Flyer also lets you do book giveaways, and includes 500 directly delivered, complete books annually. Flyer is $99 per year.
Got any social media tips? Please share in the comments!
Editor’s note: This post was originally published September 2015, as part of the Indie Author Marketing Guide series.