Book Marketing Blogsby Penny Sansevieri
December 21, 2011
Guest post by Adria Saracino
Having trouble getting your book published? Perhaps it is time to start thinking globally. Just like any business, the publishing world increasingly functions on a global scale and the majority of book publishers are international conglomerates. Luckily, books written in English are at an advantage in the global market, since many editors at foreign publishers are bilingual. However, there are still ways to use language to improve the likelihood of success.
Here are some ideas for broadening the likelihood that your book will make it to print.
Know the Business
The first step is to make certain you have a keen understanding of the publishing business. Oftentimes, books fail to find their way to market simply because the author never put his/her work into the right hands. Take some time to fully understand the ins and the outs of the publishing machine. (more…)
December 19, 2011
Guest post by Thomas Doane
Who isn’t familiar with the image of the solitary writer?
Sitting alone, an unsmiling face illuminated by a single candle, mired in an existential quandary; full of disgust and angst and wracked with the agony and desolation of a pitiful, meaningless existence. The candlelight is now the incandescent glow of the computer screen but the loathing and isolation are still there, especially when the writer cannot find a job. Luckily, good writers have been in high demand thanks to Google.
In early 2011, Google enacted the largest update to their ever-changing algorithm to date. The update is known in tech circles as Panda. The purpose of Panda was to de-value the trashy, spammy sites on the Internet so that search results (Google’s primary function) would be free of useless returns. In order to facilitate this, Google’s search algorithm gives value (in the form of “rank”) to sites that meet a set of criteria:
- Content must be rich
- Website must be easily indexed
- Pages must load quickly
- Advertising/content ratio needs to favor content (more…)
December 16, 2011
Here’s a roundup of some of the top book marketing Tweets from the past week, courtesy of bloggers, marketers, authors and others. The topics include promoting your books during the holidays, using mobile barcodes, getting retweeted and much more. Happy marketing!
* 10 Steps to Better Blogging
Make your blogging the best you possibly can with these tips:
December 14, 2011
In the ever-changing world of social media there is one source that millions turn to: Social Media Examiner. In a little over two years, the site has become an influential and respected source. The story of how it got there offers a useful model for anyone who is looking to grow followers and generate sales, as founder Michael Stelzner explains.
About our guest: Social media expert Michael Stelzner is the founder of Social Media Examiner and author of the books Launch and Writing White Papers. Visit http://www.socialmediaexaminer.com/.
Social Media Examiner began in October 2009. The site now has a following that includes:
* 450,000 people who read Social Media Examiner each month
* 120,000+ email subscribers
* 69,000+ Likes on Facebook
How Mike built Social Media Examiner
The idea was to create incredible content that people would love and want to share.
Mike saw a hole in the marketplace in 2009. There wasn’t a lot of how-to information on using social media such as Facebook, Twitter (and now Google+). Social Media Examiner started offering magazine style pieces and people began following the site and it took off.
Mike believes strongly in sharing content and getting other authors to contribute content. A lot of times people just want to use their own content, but he says there is a time and place to talk about yourself. If you want to build a loyal following, sell books, build a membership site or start consulting, you need to offer a gift. Mike’s gift was great content. (more…)
December 12, 2011
December 12, 2011
We had a special edition of the show with Facebook marketing expert Amy Porterfield.
About our guest: Amy Porterfield is a social media strategist and co-author of Facebook Marketing All-In-One for Dummies. She helps entrepreneurs across industries establish strategies to maximize the power of social media and increase the success of their online marketing efforts. She is currently leading a webinar titled the Simple Social Media Formula. Learn more at http://www.amyporterfield.com/.
Amy was not an early fan of Facebook. She used Twitter and liked it a great deal, but when she created a Facebook Page she learned tips and tricks that sold her on the value of Facebook as a marketing tool.
A couple of months ago Facebook made some major changes, mostly to profiles. Amy used to teach users that the profile was for friends and family. However, the changes provided a subscribe button on profiles. Now anyone can subscribe to your profile, not just your Facebook friends. The new timeline looks like a news feed. You can add a logo, brand it, and make it look like a Facebook (business) Page.
You can have thousands of people subscribing to your feed on your profile. (more…)
December 9, 2011
We’ve highlighted some of the top book marketing Tweets from the past week, courtesy of bloggers, marketers, authors and others. The topics include why fresh blog content matters, how to use your LinkedIn Page, ways to use video, why Google+ matters and much more. Happy marketing!
* 10 Ideas to Get more Comments On Your Facebook Posts
December 8, 2011
THE BOOK MARKETING EXPERT NEWSLETTER!
A newsletter all about SUCCESSFUL publishing and POWERFUL promotion.
Dec. 8, 2011 Issue #261
in this issue
– Note From The Editor
– Five Simple Ways to Improve Your Ranking on Google
– Feature Article: A Simple Guide for Driving Thousands of Hits to Your Website
– A Special Google+ Offer
– At Your Service: AME’s Book Marketing Resources
– Book Bits and Bites
– Guerilla Marketing to Promote Your Book on the Web
– How Authors Make Real Money (Hint: It’s Not From Books)
– Open for Submissions: The 2012 Indie Excellence Awards
– Create Sound Bites That the Media Find Scrumptious
– Penny and AME in the News!
– Hear What The Publishing Insiders Have to Say
– Six Tips For Making Your Press Release Twitter Friendly
– 6 Ways to be More Persuasive With Social Media
– 7 Tips to Maximize Shares of Your Facebook Posts
– Twitter Tops Facebook in Press Release Views
– Social Media Snippet: TwentyFeet
– Social Media Snippet: Simply Measured
– Reader Tip!
– WHO ARE WE
Penny C. Sansevieri, Editor firstname.lastname@example.org
Welcome to a new issue of THE BOOK MARKETING EXPERT NEWSLETTER.
You are receiving this newsletter compliments of Author Marketing Experts, Inc. To opt out, please scroll down to the bottom of this newsletter.
Note From The Editor
Welcome to another issue of the Book Marketing Expert Newsletter!
I love this season, don’t you? There’s a chill in the air, everyone seems a little cheerier and the Eggnog Latte is back at Starbucks. No, this isn’t an ad, I’m just a tad addicted to these things as most of the folks who work with me know.
We have a number of special surprises for our valued readers. For years you’ve followed us, read our newsletter, our blog, and supported all of the work we do. This holiday season we want to say “thank you” with a few special gifts. First, we have our brand new Google+ page and we have a special listed in this issue, and if you join our page you get a special “thank you gift.”
In our next issue, we’ll announce our holiday/end-of-year thank you gift, so please keep watching this newsletter for details.
Traffic, what a wonderful thing? Oh, well, I’m not talking about the traffic to the shopping mall, but rather to your website. This is a great time of year to fine tune your website and get your share of the online traffic. I hope you’ll enjoy this piece!
I want to take moment to thank each and every one of you for your loyalty and support. We couldn’t do what we do without you. We love that you love this newsletter, our blog and all the information we share. We hope it’s helpful – and from our house to yours, we wish you a super successful 2012!
Penny, Paula, Amy, Bonnie, Ylva and everyone at Author Marketing Experts, Inc.
Five Simple Ways to Improve Your Ranking on Google
Getting top ranking on Google may seem like a lofty goal, but many authors can achieve this. And while they may not come up on the #1 spot on Google, they can get pretty high. Here’s how:http://www.huffingtonpost.com/penny-c-sansevieri/improve-google-ranking_b_996851.html
Feature Article: A Simple Guide for Driving Thousands of Hits to Your Website
Have you ever been stuck in a traffic jam fuming and wondering when it would clear up and how soon you could get off this maddening highway? That’s a bad traffic jam, here’s a good one: thousands of people clamoring to get to your website, begging to be let in. Yes, that’s the kind of traffic that makes me very happy and here are some tips on how to get it.
If you’re ready to take your website traffic from so-so to “wow!” you’ll need to do a bit of work. Just throwing up a website won’t cut it. You’re going to need to pay attention to things like trends, keywords, and tags. First, let’s look at keywords and how to find them.
Finding Your Keywords
First, figure out what you want your keywords to be. What sort of searches do you want to come up for? This is important because if you pin yourself to the wrong search term, it could get you poor results. For example, in this market we want to come up under the search term “book marketing.” I once thought we might want to pin ourselves to “publishing,” but it would not have been a wise choice. Why? Because most people searching for the term publishing are at the very beginning of their journey and not even ready to consider a marketing firm.
We would rather get someone when they are further into the process because it makes for a much more qualified lead on our end. The same may be true for you. Figure out where their point of entry is. This isn’t something that you can search online using Google AdWords, Trends or Insight, it’s something you learn by researching your market. I learned about this when I did my own research. I plugged in a bunch of keywords I wanted to rank for to see what came up. When I plugged in publishing I found publishers. Not a good competitive space for me to be in. When I plugged in book marketing or book market, I found other companies I was more aligned with.
So, first gather some search terms, you may not initially refer to them as keywords, they are just your starting point. They might end up being perfect or you might scrap the list and just start over. Your research will point you in that direction.
Let’s say you have a series of keywords you are considering but you aren’t sure what other variables folks might be searching on. Hop on over to Soovle. When you land on this site you’ll see a simple box to plug in your keyword. When you do you’ll get back variations of searches that come up in sites like YouTube, Google, Yahoo, and Bing. It will also show these terms as used on Amazon.com which can be helpful if you are selecting tags to go with your book. You’ll want to spend some time here, clicking the various links to find different ways that consumers search on these keywords. You also might find a better search term than what you currently use, or it might validate your research. Either way it’s a fantastic site and one we use often.
Once you get your keywords nailed down, Google AdWords is always a great place to research their popularity. You want to know that the keywords you are going after are getting searches, meaning searches big enough to matter to your traffic. If you go to Google AdWords, punch in your keywords and then turn off the broad match so you narrow down your results a bit more. You can also play around with “exact” and “phrase,” but I generally stick with all three of those unchecked and see what kind of results I get. Generally I look for Global Monthly Searches that are above 650; I’d rather it be higher but if you are searching a niche term, that might be the best you can do.
How to Use Keywords
You now need to know how to use the keywords you spent so much time finding. First and foremost, you want to use them on your home page copy. That’s the copy on the home page of your website. I recommend keeping the verbiage on your homepage to 250 words at most and making sure that this text is keyword rich. You want to address your visitors’ concerns, not yours. Remember that the first few lines of your website copy will show up in searches so make sure it’s relevant to the audience.
Next, the URL you’re using could make a difference. Since we’ve already established that we wanted to come up for the term “Book marketing” we started using it everywhere, in our Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/bookmarketingameon your YouTube Channel http://www.youtube.com/user/BookmarketingAME and even in our URL. I bought www.bookmarketingAME.com. Now, we don’t use this URL per se, it just points to our main domain name which is: http://www.amarketingexpert.com.
Why did we do that? Because the use of your core search terms is really key to driving traffic and getting higher in the search rank. Want proof? Before we did all of this our website was generally at the bottom of page one on Google or on page two when you plugged in “book marketing” in the search bar. Three months after we made these changes (keywords on the home page and keywords in our Facebook branding, YouTube and URL) we came up #3 in search, sometimes #2 and on a stupendously good day, we’re #1. Now that’s a great traffic jam!
You can and should also use keywords in your blog posts. Not overtly so where you’re creating posts that don’t make sense (this is called keyword stuffing), but using them sprinkled throughout your content, sort of like we did with this article.
You should also use the keywords in your YouTube videos and in Alt tags in pictures on your website, etc. Keywords are fantastic and once you go through the work of finding them, you can use them over and over again.
Watch Your Traffic
Now you want to be sure and watch your traffic. Get Google Analytics to help you monitor traffic on your website. Talk to any expert SEO person and they will tell you that’s about the best analytics software you can use. Once you insert this bit of code into your site you’ll be able to determine what kind of traffic you’re getting and from where. How are people finding you (i.e. what keywords are they using to get to your site), and what sites are pulling in your traffic? Very helpful information. You should plan to check your traffic monthly, if not more often.
Additional Tips for Driving Traffic
There’s a fun little site you’ve probably already heard of called Google Trends. It will show you trending topics and you can also plug in your keywords to find trends in your area of expertise. But here’s the real fun part. I try to watch Google Trends every so often, maybe once or twice a week if I’m really stumped on what to blog on and under “Hot Searches” you’ll find the top things that consumers are searching on. If you can comment on these topics or make any of them relevant to your message, you can really surge traffic on your site. Keep in mind that your topic must be relevant! Everyone has become pretty careful about authenticity of content since the Google Panda Update http://www.seomoz.org/blog/beat-google-panda.
Another great site is Google Insights for Search. This will show you areas (worldwide) that may have a potential interest in your keywords/topic and also the locations which get the highest searches. It’s also great because if you’re looking to dig into particular markets, you can really get a sense of where the interest lies and you might even be surprised. When I searched on book marketing I found some of the highest searches in India! You can also see how searches rank for your particular topic and how they have trended over time. I find this very interesting when I’m researching a book topic for marketing, or a particular angle for a pitch we’re considering.
Keywords don’t have to be these mysterious search terms that only your website or SEO person knows about. Finding and using the right keywords can really make a big difference to any website and, especially, to your sales. Also, even though we talked about thousands of hits on a site, you don’t really need that many to make a difference to your bottom line. Good, quality traffic and a solid site that’s converting is all it takes to reap your own online rewards!
Websites Mentioned in this Article:
At Your Service: AME’s Book Marketing Resources
Join 23,000+ and “Like” our AME Facebook Page for marketing articles and tips, YouTube videos from our book marketing channel, notices about upcoming webinars, Publishing Insider shows, and more: http://www.facebook.com/bookmarketingame?ref=sgm.
Need Book Marketing Content? Visit the articles page on our AME website and you’ll find a range of articles by Penny, which may be used along with her byline (provided at the top of the page) at no cost. The complete list is at http://www.amarketingexpert.com/articles/.
Watch “Converting Fans to Sales on Facebook with Amy Porterfield” and much more on AME’s Book Marketing Channel on YouTube. New videos are added regularly to keep you up to date on all things book marketing! http://www.youtube.com/user/BookmarketingAME.
Book Bits and Bites
* Food for Thought – 40 Inspiring Quotes About Reading From Writers: http://flavorwire.com/237785/40-inspiring-quotes-about-reading-from-writers
* Say What? – The Word Of The Year for 2011 According To Dictionary.com Is ‘Tergiversate:’ http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/11/30/word-of-the-year-2011-tergiversate_n_1119524.html
* Quick Quiz – Can You Guess These Books from Their Most Commonly Used Words? http://blogs.publishersweekly.com/blogs/PWxyz/?p=8177
* Awesome Sights – The World’s Great Bookshops:http://www.huffingtonpost.com/black-tomato/worlds-most-beautiful-boo_b_1107248.html
Guerilla Marketing to Promote Your Book on the Web
It used to be that promoting a product was an expensive undertaking, one that required excessive amounts of funds for television or radio advertising, or slightly less for publications of the paper variety. And promoting books, in particular, meant making deals with booksellers to get top placement in their stores.
Authors, of course, would have to go on multi-city tours of their home country and even the world in order to give interviews to television, radio, and newspaper/magazine reporters, as well as host signings. This was both an expensive and time-consuming process. But these days things have changed dramatically. Not only can writers publish and sell their own eBooks (or paper books) online; they can also promote them in a number of ways that are far less expensive or even free. Here are a few to try.
1. Build a contact list. Whether you get contacts through your website, Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, or any number of other social networks, you can use the strength of numbers to promote your book. Post messages with excerpts to drum up interest, offer deals for followers, and encourage “friends” to become brand ambassadors, bringing more people on board to enjoy the same benefits of membership that they do, as well as hyping your book online and in real-world settings.
2. YouTube videos. Videos to promote books have become something of a sensation on YouTube, with offerings for books like “Pride and Prejudice and Zombies” and “Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter” topping the list for views. Some of these “trailers” have high enough production value to make it look like a movie is actually in the works, while others are student-project level. But it’s an innovative and trendy way to promote your book (all you need is a video camera and a few willing friends). Although well-known and high-paid authors often do something similar for television, their ads tend to contain nothing more than some flashy graphic text and the author spouting one-liners. The YouTube versions are more like full-scale movie trailers.
3. Giveaways. While giving away your work for free might not sound very appealing, it is a good way to bring in new readers. So give away a few copies to loyal fans and offer freebies to the first, say 50 new members who sign up at a set time and date. You’ll probably get hundreds of new accounts that will hopefully make up for the number you gave away and then some.
4. Contests. There’s no better way to get people to give you contact information than to hold a contest. In the publishing arena there are many ways you could go with this. You could ask readers to provide potential names for an upcoming book (with a free copy and a mention in the book going to the winner). Or you could ask them to send in character sketches and then work the winning entry into a future project. You might even hold a contest for a couple of lucky readers to win a trip to join you at a book signing. There are so many possibilities and all of them should net you new readership.
5. Listen and respond. Communication studies have shown that the best way to keep a relationship going is to ensure open channels of dialogue. So when readers comment you need to make an effort to reply. This will endear your fans to you and keep them coming back for more, as well as encouraging them to talk you up to everyone they know.
Guest post by Sarah Danielson. Sarah is a writer for Communication Studies, http://www.communicationstudies.com/, the best resource for students, professors, and professionals. In her spare time she enjoys reading and she is currently writing a book on the joys of freelancing.
How Authors Make Real Money (Hint: It’s Not From Books)
Learn how you can create online products for your audience: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/arielle-ford/online-publishing-authors_b_1097730.html
Open for Submissions: The 2012 Indie Excellence Awards
The Indie Excellence Awards contest is taking submissions!
NIEA celebrates overall excellence, including design and promotional text. To enter, please send one copy of your book per category entered. Books with publication dates of 2009, 2010, 2011 and 2012 are eligible. Books published anywhere in the world may be submitted as long as they are in English and can be purchased in the United States.
For more information, expanded category listings and entry forms please visit: http://www.indieexcellence.com
Create Sound Bites That the Media Find Scrumptious
When you pre-plan sound bites prior to an interview you raise your chances of getting coverage: http://publicityhound.net/creating-sound-bites-that-the-media-find-scrumptious/
Penny and AME in the News!
* Penny’s article “How to Monetize Free” was published on the Faith, Hope and Grace writer’s blog: http://nquatrano.wordpress.com/2011/11/06/how-to-monetize-free-by-penny-sansevieri/
* BookBuzzr Author blog published “Going Digital with eBooks” by AME’s Paula Krapf: http://www.bookbuzzr.com/blog/book-marketing/going-digital-with-ebooks/
* Penny has a series on book marketing underway at BookBuzzr: http://www.bookbuzzr.com/blog/?s=Penny+Sansevieri&x=0&y=0.
* Keep up with Penny’s latest publishing/marketing piece for Huffington Post: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/penny-c-sansevieri.
Hear What The Publishing Insiders Have to Say
Be in the know and hear what the publishing insiders: Penny Sansevieri, CEO of Author Marketing Experts, Inc. – and her guests – has to offer in terms of tips and insights into the industry! Listen here. Publishing Insiders is now available on iTunes, so you can keep up with the show wherever you go!
Special Guest Mike Stelzner Friday, Dec. 9 at 1:30 p.m. Pacific
Social media expert Michael Stelzner is the founder of Social Media Examiner and author of the books “Launch” and “Writing White Papers.”
Shows available for download at http://www.blogtalkradio.com/thepublishinginsiders:
* Special Guest Amy Porterfield on Facebook Marketing
* Special Guest Chris Brogan on Google+
* How and Where to Sell Your Self-Published Book
* Speaker Tips for Authors
* How to Get Your Book Reviewed
* All About Ghostwriting
* Publishing Insights from Ellora’s Cave
* Re-Purposing Your Content
* The Future of Author Events
* Selling Your Book in Bulk and Special Sales
* What Authors Must Know About Book Cover Design
* Literary Agents and Their Evolving Role in Publishing
* The Dos and Don’ts of Distribution, Parts 1, 2 and 3
* SPECIAL GUEST Seth Godin: Poke the Box
* Smart Self-Publishing: Why Book Design & Editing Matter
* Smart Self-Publishing: Making Money with eBooks
* Smart Self-Publishing Series: Becoming Your Own Publisher
* Branding: The Secret to Selling More Books
* Secrets to Getting Your Book Into Libraries
* Getting Your Book into Bookstores with Elaine Wilkes
* This Book Will Make You Money with special guest Jim Kukral
* How to Make Money on Twitter
* A Self Publishing Success Story
* From Blog to Book
* The Digital Book Revolution
* Powerhouse Promotion with Marci Shimoff
* eBooks: the Savior of Publishing or the Foe? with Joe Konrath
* Special Guest Mari Smith, queen of Facebook
* All Things Twitter! with Warren Whitlock
Six Tips For Making Your Press Release Twitter Friendly
Start with a catchy but brief headline and follow these additional tips for press release success: http://www.mediabistro.com/prnewser/six-tips-for-making-your-press-release-twitter-friendly_b30368
6 Ways to be More Persuasive With Social Media
Beginning with reciprocation, there are six effective tactics that will make your social media efforts more successful: http://mashable.com/2011/11/16/social-media-persuasive/
7 Tips to Maximize Shares of Your Facebook Posts
Did you know that eye-catching images help boost your shares? Learn what else you can do for more Facebook shares: http://www.marismith.com/ways-craft-your-facebook-posts-for-maximum-shares/
Twitter Tops Facebook in Press Release Views
The numbers are higher for Facebook but the actual impact – driving traffic to your release – is greater when releases are shared on Twitter: http://www.prnewsonline.com/free/Twitter-Tops-Facebook-in-Press-Release-Views_15599.html
Social Media Snippet: TwentyFeet
TwentyFeet.com helps you aggregate all of your social media performance data in the one place: http://twentyfeet.com/
Social Media Snippet: Simply Measured
SimplyMeasured.com – Treat yourself to a free social media competitor analysis here: http://simplymeasured.com/freebies/facebook-competitive-analysis
If you’ve got a Reader Tip you’d like to share, please send it to email@example.com with the subject line “reader tip.” Submissions should be 75 words or less.
WHO ARE WE
Author Marketing Experts, Inc. is a full-service book marketing, promotion, and publicity company. We serve authors at all stages of marketing and promotion. We offer a full range of packages and services to choose from.
To see a price list or schedule a free consultation, send your e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org with the subject line “Author Services Info.” You can also visit our website at www.amarketingexpert.com.
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December 7, 2011
December 7, 2011
We had an informative show with social media expert Chris Brogan, who discussed Google+ and why it matters.
About our guest: Chris Brogan is an author, journalist, marketing consultant, and frequent speaker about social media marketing. He is president of Human Business Works, an online education and community company for small businesses and solo entrepreneurs. His first project there, 501 Mission Place, helps nonprofits and charities learn how to grow their capabilities. Chris is also Entrepreneur in Residence at CrossTech Ventures, where he’s working to develop New Marketing Labs and The Pulse Network, among other projects.
Chris is also the cofounder of the PodCamp new media conference series, exploring the use of new media community tools to extend and build value. Find Chris in Google+ at https://plus.google.com/u/0/118320665823821681206.
Do we need another social network?
While Chris points out we never need anything – like the new iPhone – people buy it.
Although there is pushback on Google+ it’s important to note that Google is the number one search engine in the world and the company has a huge investment in how people use the web. (more…)