Book Marketing Blogsby Penny Sansevieri
August 27, 2012
Welcome to the August 27, 2012 edition of tips and tricks for writers and authors, with insights into writing, book sales, book marketing, and self-publishing. Thank you to the contributors who submitted a blog post on one of our topics and helped make this a great edition!
Sue Collier presents How front and back matter can stimulate book sales | Self-Publishing Resources posted at Self-Publishing Resources.
It’s your brand, your identity, and your business, and if you’re an author, understanding this concept is crucial. You can’t ignore the importance of having a solid brand platform online, especially in today’s fast-paced electronic world.” (more…)
August 24, 2012
We’ve gathered some of the best book marketing Tweets from the past week, courtesy of bloggers, marketers, authors and others. The topics include using social media to get an agent, influencing people with social media, ensuring your website shows up in Google, and much more. Happy marketing!
* How Authors Can Use Social Media to Land An Agent
Learn how authors can build a social media presence that will help them be successful:
* 13 Simple Tips for a Better Blog
If you want to get more visitors to your blog, it will take time, but these ideas will get you started:
August 22, 2012
We had a great segment about formatting, distributing, marketing and selling eBooks – and we’ll continue the discussion with our guest Amy Collins on the Sept. 4 Publishing Insiders show.
About our guest: Amy Collins is the owner of The Cadence Group, a sales and marketing service provider for the publishing industry. In 2008, The Cadence Group launched New Shelves Distribution, a full-scale book warehousing, sales and fulfillment company selling publisher’s books directly to the national chains and independent bookstores in North America. You may reach Amy at email@example.com or http://www.thecadencegrp.com/.
Authors must market their eBooks
Authors seem to think eBooks market themselves once they are available online, because they’re electronic and therefore everybody will see it, unlike books which sit on a bookstore shelf and are limited. It’s true there are no limits on where an eBook can go, but it takes work to get into the consciousness of people. You don’t immediately end up on Huffington Post. Successful eBook authors like Amanda Hocking and John Locke did a lot of marketing to get where they are today – Amanda went from self-publishing her own eBooks to a three-book deal with a traditional publisher and John has sold millions of his eBooks.
What is eBook distribution and why do authors need it?
There are four main sites where people buy their eBooks, says Amy: (more…)
August 20, 2012
Welcome to the August 20, 2012 edition of tips and tricks for writers and authors, with insights into book marketing, social media, self-publishing, and writing. Thank you to all of the contributors who submitted a blog post and helped make this a great edition!
Karen M. Rider presents Should Personal Bias affect Why an Editor Rejects a Submission? posted at Soul of a Writer , saying, “You’ve carefully selected the publications to submit your work. You’ve written (and rewritten) your absolute best work. You followed all the submission guidelines. So, why did the editors bounce your short story from their desk into the rejection bin? How much does an editor’s personal bias influence the decision to reject a short story?
Most of the time, when you get a rejection from a literary publication, you aren’t given any reason at all specific to why your submission got bounced. Instead, like me, you receive generic statements that your story is “not what we’re looking for a this time” or even worse, “yours was among hundreds of quality submissions but we’re going to have to turn it down. This is not a reflection, necessarily, on the quality of your writing…”
At some point, we, as authors, need to stop tweaking, changing, and altering and just SHIP. Our careers depend on it, but we also want to produce the BEST quality product (book) that we can!
This post goes into the issues a little more.” (more…)
August 17, 2012
Let’s look back at some useful book marketing Tweets from the past week, courtesy of bloggers, marketers, authors and others. The topics include building your Pinterest following with Facebook, learning from self-publishing marketing mistakes, growing your audience with Amazon, and much more. Happy marketing!
* The Ultimate Guide to Social Media for Writers
If you aren’t even sure how to get started with social media, this blog post will walk you through your options and guide your strategy:
* How Amazon Grew My Audience By More Than 24,000 Readers in Three Days
Giving away a free book via the Kindle Direct Publishing Program at Amazon.com can provide a great boost for your book:
August 15, 2012
Getting found locally used to be pretty easy with phone books and ads in local papers. But most of us don’t even have a Yellow Pages in our homes and, instead, turn to our research online or on our phones. Smart phones are driving a lot of that search and according to a recent survey done by ISACA, 58% of consumers who have smart phones use location-based marketing applications despite concerns about safety and personal information. The survey also reports that the use of location-based marketing apps is up one-third from a year ago.
In a prior article we looked at the importance of mobile marketing (http://www.huffingtonpost.com/penny-c-sansevieri/mobile-marketing-magic_b_1672829.html). Now, it’s time to focus in on why it’s key to grab your local search real estate.
If your business does business locally, whether it’s through an actual storefront or some other means, you’ll really want to optimize your local visibility. Keep in mind that in order to do this, you’ll need to make sure that your website is optimized for local search. This means checking to see if your title tags and meta descriptions reflect local text. When we think local, we often think of sites like Yelp which allow consumers to review local businesses. Reviews are great but often need to be encouraged. Adding buttons to your website to encourage customers to review your business is also great. A local dog groomer near me encourages reviews on Yelp by offering $5 off their next grooming visit. (more…)
August 13, 2012
Welcome to the August 13, 2012 edition of tips and tricks for writers and authors, with insights into book marketing, social media, and writing. Thank you to everyone who submitted a blog post!
Phyllis Zimbler Miller presents SCBWI Conference: Amazon Cares About Authors — Internet Marketing posted at Miller Mosaic Social Media Marketing. (more…)
August 10, 2012
Here’s a look back at some of the top book marketing Tweets from the past week, courtesy of bloggers, marketers, authors and others. The topics include developing a Pinterest strategy, making a living as a writer, managing annoying Twitterers, and much more. Happy marketing!
* Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, Pinterest – A Social Media Checklist For Businesses
If you’ve ever wondered how you should get started with social media, this handy infographic will lead the way:
* Which Social Platform Really Drives the Most Traffic?
While Facebook is clearly number one, the second place site might surprise you – and it might be worth checking out:
August 8, 2012
Guest post by Deanna Proach
Not long ago Facebook contained a social stigma where everybody used it solely for the purpose of bragging rights, gossip and to measure each other based on the quantity of friends they have on their list and by the number of comments and likes they receive by people. While this is still true to some people, the tables seem to be turning quick. Business owners, entrepreneurs and wrters, are increasingly using Facebook to grow their customer/client base and to make lasting connections with industry experts. This is because industry experts are creating business pages and/or groups designed just for the purpose of networking. Nowadays, they are very easy to find.
Months prior to the release of my first book, Day of Revenge, I connected with Apex Reviews on Facebook–a book review/promo company that gave Day of Revenge a four-star review and also produced a stellar book video trailer. Several months later, I received a message from Apex Reviews on Facebook–a message that had been sent en-mass to several people–listing a new traditional publisher–PULSEpub–that was looking for authors. At that time, I was working on my second novel, To be Maria, so I wasn’t quite ready for the submissions stage. However, I bookmarked the PULSEpub website and kept them in mind until I felt good and ready to email the editorial team a standard submission form–a query letter, synopsis and first three chapters.
Well, in May of 2012 I signed a contract with PULSEpub for the publication of To be Maria. This is the largest achievement I’ve made via networking on Facebook.
August 7, 2012
For many of us, traffic and website analytics is a very foreign idea. But understanding traffic and reading website analytics reports doesn’t have to be a complicated endeavor. First up, let’s break down the terminology:
Page views: Each time someone lands on your site (when they load one of your pages) it generates a page view. Keep in mind that this tallies regardless of who visits or how many times they’ve been to the site. It sounds like a bad measurement of traffic and to some degree it is. We all love returning visitors but most of us really care about those valuable first time folks.
Visits: This measure shares how many users have spent time on your website, regardless of the number of pages each user views.
Unique visitors: This is an important stat and as the name implies, this metric counts only the unique users who visit the site. If a particular visitor comes to the site every day, it still only counts as one visit.
Pages/visit: This metric shows you how many pages a visitor perused during each session, the higher this number, the better.
Average visit duration: How much time do users spend on the site during each visit? While you want someone to spend a long time on a site, the average time spent is generally 3-5 min and sometimes less. Obviously longer is better, but the only site in the world that gets massive visit duration is currently Facebook, with an average of twenty minutes per visit.
Bounce rate: This number indicated people who “bounce” off of the page. So, someone visits and then decides they are either in the wrong place or you’ve sent them into “surf shock” and they leave. Generally the lower the number the better, but the average bounce rate is around 50-59%.
% new visits: This measure is the percentage of your traffic from first-time users who have never been to the site before. If you’re eager to get repeat people to your site (and this will often depend on the nature of your business) you’ll want this number lower than your repeating visitor number.
Understanding Google Analytics
These days, most websites use a service called Google Analytics to measure traffic. It’s considered by most web designers to be the gold standard of measurement and it’s also free which is great.
Getting Google Analytics is easy, you can just register on the site and it will give you a snippet of code that will go on each page of your website. Your web person can do this if it wasn’t installed when your site was built. Most hosting companies come with a C-panel backend that measures traffic, even so I highly recommend getting Google Analytics for accuracy and other reasons you’ll see in a minute.
Once you set up Google Analytics, give it a few days to gather data, once you do you’ll start to see numbers appear on your dashboard. Google Analytics continues to update their system and recently launched a beta version of real time traffic. Once you’re logged in you can find it on the left hand side of the page.
Real Time Traffic
I tend to watch these real-time traffic numbers pretty closely. It’s also a great tool if you’re on top of a promotion, you can see what kind of traffic you’re driving to your website, in real time!
Getting to Know Your Data
When you first start looking through the numbers, you’ll want to get a sense of some of the numbers we described above: Page Views, Bounce Rate, etc. If you’re worried that your bounce rate is too high, consult your web person to see if there’s anything you can do to lower it.
One of the areas I spend a lot of time on is the Traffic from All Sources so I can gauge what’s coming from where. Not only will this help me as I’m creating referring traffic from various channels, but it also helps me know what’s work and what isn’t. You can find this area here. Click on Traffic Sources and then All Traffic:
Measuring Social Media
One of the most exciting additions to Google Analytics has been their tracking of social media. This is a fantastic tool lets you see how much of your traffic is coming from social. So, what’s a good mix? I think half of your traffic should come from social media, the rest should come organically from Google. Here’s a snapshot of what these two graphs look like. Once you do that, you’ll see two sets of bars/graphs indicating traffic patterns.
The top bar shows you the social media referrals, with a comparison chart to all traffic, which is super helpful. You don’t need to do anything to set this up. Google tracks social traffic automatically.
Google Analytics can also connect to your AdWords campaign, allowing you to measure how your online ad campaign is performing. This will allow you to track how your ads are doing and whether they are bringing you vistors. If you run ads on your site, click Content > AdSense > Overview to see which pages on your site are earning the most revenue (and how much). You’ll need to link them together in the AdSense tool first.
How much traffic you get and how well it’s converting will depend on your reach and your website, but knowing these numbers is important. Keep in mind that the importance of each category will depend largely on the industry you’re in as I mentioned previously. If you want lots of returning visitors, then the % of new visits number will need to be lower. If you’re looking for lots of new traffic then Unique Visitors is what you need to pay attention to.
Getting to know your traffic is not only important, but mandatory if you’re going to know how effective your online marketing is. Also, knowing your Google Analytics numbers will also show you if there’s a problem on your site, like low conversion which could be because of a broken page or broken link.