Sunday, March 1, 2020
Traditional Publishing and the Author Platform - Be Realistic
Best sellers happen to unknown authors. Getting on the New York Times Best Seller list happens. Breakout books happen to new authors.
But . . .
Yes, of course, there’s a ‘but.’ Statistically speaking, about 80% or more of all books don’t succeed.
Every new author needs to enter the publishing arena with open eyes. She needs to be realistic as to what’s required of her and what her chances are.
So, how do you help increase your chances of getting your book to succeed? How do you create a successful writing career, even if you don’t have a breakout book?
3 of the Most Important Tips to Effective Author Platform Building and Book Marketing
Whether you landed a book contract or not (if you’re self-publishing these three tips are just as important, if not more so):
1. You absolutely need an author website. And, it needs to be optimized.
Optimization means having the right domain name, the right website title and subtitle, using keywords, optimizing your blog posts, creating the ‘right’ web pages, using optimized images, and so on.
Another key optimization trick is to keep your website simple: easy to read, easy to navigate, and uncluttered.
2. You need an understanding of how to market you book.
According to the February 2013 issue of The Writer, “The slam-dunk team” article explains, “Publishing houses want a business partner, someone who’s going to work hard from the get-go, tirelessly promoting, working connections, and never saying no to an opportunity.”
Do you know how to blog effectively? Do you know about creating a subscriber list and using email marketing for more sales? Do you know how to work social media marketing to increase website traffic, boost authority, and boost sales?
These marketing strategies are all part of an optimized author/writer platform – they’re considered inbound marketing. While it’s all must-know-stuff, it can be easy to do.
There are lots of online opportunities to learn these skills.
3. Put your website and new found knowledge to work.
It’s true there is much involved in building your platform and book marketing, but once you get the hang of it, it will become second-nature. Think of it like a puzzle. You have to put the pieces together before you get the results you want.
Have an optimized author website; create an Amazon Author Page; get book reviews; blog your way to traffic; use email marketing to promote new releases; and use social media marketing to widen your marketing reach.
Give your publisher what she wants: A book marketing savvy author.
4. This is a bonus tip:
According to just about all expert book marketers, including Chuck Sambuchino and Jane Friedman, you need to have all your marketing strategies in place before you even start submitting to book publishers or literary agents.
So, if you’re writing a book or you’re in the submissions process, be sure to get your author platform and book marketing strategies in place.
Be able to tell a publisher or agent that, YES – you can help market your book.
Karen Cioffi is an award-winning children’s author, successful children’s ghostwriter, and online platform instructor with WOW! Women on Writing. Check out her middle-grade book, WALKING THROUGH WALLS.
You can connect with Karen at: LinkedIn and Twitter