Book Marketing Blogs

by Penny Sansevieri
10 Things your friends can do to help you sell more books: Tip #11 of 52 Ways to Market Your Book
July 1, 2014by: Penny
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We hope you’re enjoying 52 Ways to Market Your Book! We’ve got your next batch of tips, are you ready? OK, here is what you can expect in the coming weeks!

Tip 11: Ten Things Your Friends Can Do To Help You Sell More Books 11

Tip 12: Read Blogs in Your Market

Tip 13: How’s Your Online Reputation?

Tip 14: Secrets for Getting Into Bookstores

Tip 15: How to Look Good Online

Tip 16: Never Sell Your Book

Tip 17: How to Network Like a Pro!

Tip 18: One Minute Marketing

Tip 19: Host a Video Contest!

Tip 20: The Power and Importance of Consistency

Tip 11

10 Things Your Friends Can do to Help you Sell More Books!  

Successful authors are not loners. They get out and they talk about their book, they engage people, they market and they enlist the help of their team. In this case we’re talking about your friends. Getting friends (and family) to help you market your book might be the best thing you can do for your book’s success, but how you go about engaging their help is another matter entirely. Friends and family who haven’t spent any time in the book industry might be at a loss for what to do and because of that, might end up doing nothing. I find that when I talk to folks they tell me they’d love to help but have no clue where to start. So take this list and pass it out to everyone you know, this should give them a good jump-off point and could certainly help boost your sales!

1) Do you have promotional pieces? T-shirts, postcards, bookmarks, hats, magnets? Send some to all of your friends and ask them to pass them out or leave them in places where your readers might shop.

2) Send friends and family an announcement e-mail and ask if they’ll send it to ten (or more) people they know with their endorsement to buy the book or better yet, if they have a newsletter or mailing list, see if they’ll announce your book to their newsletter readers!

3) Have them go into their local bookstore and talk to the manager about inviting you in for a local event or better yet, see if they’ll stock your book.

4) Encourage everyone you know to buy a book.

5) Offer them a commission if they sell books on your behalf.

6) If you’re in town see if they’ll host a book signing at their home to introduce you to their network of friends.

7) Do they have businesses? See if they’ll consider selling your book at their offices. (And remember to give them a percentage!)

8) Do they have any connections with local radio, TV or print? Ask them if they’ll make a call for you to see about getting you on the air.

9) Tell your friends what you need. Make up a promotional “wish list” for example “I wish I could do an event at XYZ bookstore, or I wish I could get into XYZ magazine.” You never know who they might know. Remember the six degrees of separation rule. Often friends want to help but they don’t know what you need. Tell them.

10) Thank them for all of their efforts and keep them apprised of your success. Often we get so busy promoting our books that we forget to say thank you and since we hate to boast, we also forget to tell people all the wonderful things that have happened to us and our books. Tell them. They’ll be happy for you and it might inspire them to do more!

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AME Blog Carnival: Tips and Tricks for Writers and Authors – June 30, 2014
June 30, 2014by: Paula
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Welcome to the Author Marketing Experts Blog Carnival. This week we’re sharing some great posts about social media, book marketing, and self-publishing. Thank you to this week’s contributors!

Self-Publishing

Colin Dunbar submitted Format a Book in Word: Global Settings posted at Format Book in Word, saying, “Naturally, the quality of the content of your book is the number 1 priority. But when you format your book, the layout of your content, structure and readability is just as important as the content itself.”

whispering

Social Media

Erica Verrillo submitted Disengaging from Readers: Dealing with Trolls, Cyber-bullies, and Other Web Cranks posted at Publishing … And Other Forms of Insanity, saying, “Engagement, as a marketing term, means getting someone to buy something or exhibit interest in your product in some tangible way. If you are a writer, engagement means getting someone to buy your book, or write a review. If you are a blogger, it means traffic to your blog. If you have launched an author website or Facebook page, it means having people visit, read your page(s), and make return visits. If you are a budding author here are a few simple rules to follow when embarking on ‘engagement.’ ”

Book Marketing

Frances Caballo submitted Chasing the Elusive Shareable Content posted at Social Media Just for Writers, saying, “We know certain characteristics of highly shareable content: you need captivating images, great videos, and limited text. However, what may be a captivating image to me might be be to another person. In this post I share my experiments with content as I find to find the “magic” formula for highly shareable content.”

That concludes this week’s carnival. Our weekly roundup offers the best book marketing, self-publishing, writing, and general publishing industry tips to guide authors, would-be authors, publishers and others on their book journey. Submit a post to our weekly carnival by using this link: http://www.amarketingexpert.com/submit-ame-blog-carnival/



Best of the Web Book Marketing Tips for the Week of June 23, 2014
June 27, 2014by: Paula
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This roundup of top book marketing tweets, courtesy of bloggers, marketers, authors and others, offers plenty of ideas and inspiration. The topics include using Goodreads’ “Ask the Author” feature, building an email list, using hashtags to get traffic to your website, and more. Happy marketing!

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* Want to Traditionally Publish? Here are 8 Things You Need to Know

Make sure you avoid these mistakes because they could disqualify your book if you want to be considered by a traditional publisher:

http://bit.ly/1q57As3

publish sign

* Twitter Guide for Writers & Illustrators

This is the ultimate guide for using Twitter, starting with the basics, along with tips on networking, promotion, and marketing on Twitter:

http://bit.ly/12IfH1Y

* 5 Twitter Tools to Increase Your Blog Retweets

There are some terrific plugins that are easy to install and give your followers a simple way to share your posts:

http://bit.ly/1fmW7h5

* Marketing for You, the Indie Author – Building an Email List

One author explains his methods for building an email list, and now he can sell direct to readers:

http://bit.ly/1mjFFBG

* How to Approach and Pitch Social Media Influencers

There is a method for building relationships with key people who are influencers in your niche. Here’s what you should do:

http://bit.ly/1l7wD65

* 4 Ways to Rock Goodreads’ New ‘Ask The Author’ Feature

Have you checked out this author tool? It can be a great way to connect with readers:

http://ow.ly/y3I39

* 3 Hot Social PR Trends and How to Use Them

Learn how to leverage the connection between social media and PR:

http://bit.ly/1m4tMiY

* 13 Blog Post Blunders You Should Avoid (And What to Do Instead)

Discover how you can make your blog one of the success stories – starting with giving your blog focus:

http://dld.bz/dmwwE

* Hashtags are Great for SEO

When you use hashtags you also send marketing traffic to your social media site or blog:

http://youtu.be/VyT9D7NwQnA



AME Blog Carnival: Tips and Tricks for Writers and Authors – June 23, 2014
June 23, 2014by: Paula
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Welcome to the Author Marketing Experts Blog Carnival. This week we’ve got some great posts on writing, and book marketing, to share. Thank you to this week’s contributors!

Writing

Katie McCoach submitted The Allure of the Cliffhanger posted at Katie McCoach, saying, “How do you write a cliffhanger without ticking off your reader? These tips will help!”

Evelyn Brooks submitted How to Overcome Writer’s Block posted at Evelyn Roberts Brooks, saying, “Tips to overcome writer’s block, plus a special gift of affirmations (MP3) and affirmation cards for writers.”

woman exclaiming at computer screen

Book Marketing

Frances Caballo submitted Writers: Use Visuals to Market Your Books posted at Social Media Just for Writers, saying, “This post explains why visual are important for creating shareable content and then explains how to use Canva to create compelling visuals for blogs and social media.”

Kimberley Grabas submitted 39 Things to Remember While Struggling to Build Your Writing Career posted at Your Writer Platform saying, “When you’re knee-deep in the tangle of learning something new, it’s easy to get lost in trivialities. What’s important and what’s not? What deserves your attention, and what can you let go of? Overwhelm stalls your forward progress, frustration rises (maybe even a little panic?) and the wave of ‘I’ll never figure this out,’ washes over. And since the rules are rapidly changing, there is a constant struggle to pull yourself from the quagmire of the ‘unimportant,’ and focus on what’s truly relevant to crafting a long and successful writing career. Take a deep breath. Building your career as a writer is no small task. But it’s too important not to figure out. To ease the tension and guide you along your path, the following is a list of gentle reminders of what really matters. Things you probably already know, but have forgotten or abandoned while striving to build your author empire.”

That concludes this week’s carnival. Our weekly roundup offers the best book marketing, self-publishing, writing, and general publishing industry tips to guide authors, would-be authors, publishers and others on their book journey. Submit a post to our weekly carnival by using this link: http://www.amarketingexpert.com/submit-ame-blog-carnival/



Best of the Web Book Marketing Tips for the Week of June 16, 2014
June 20, 2014by: Paula
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Get some great tips from these top marketing tweets, courtesy of bloggers, marketers, authors and others. The topics include how to find enough time for promotion, changes to Amazon categories, ways to build your writing career, and more. Happy marketing!

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* 39 Things to Remember While Building Your Writing Career

Get some guidance on the things that matter, and the things you can cast aside:

http://bit.ly/1ucZzhZ

a writer is a person with courage

* Four Debut Novelists on Elevator Pitches, Getting an Agent, and Writing Your First Book

See what they say about pitching books, non-literary writing influences, and how to navigate the literary world:

http://bzfd.it/1pFCeYI

* Innovative Ways to Market Your eBook

If you want your eBook to stand out, Guy Kawasaki has some ideas worth considering:

http://youtu.be/8uTrnCX-eZ4

* Tips to Help Keep Your Email Out of the Spam Folder

Email can be a great marketing tool, but you do need to know how to avoid having your email labeled as spam:

http://bit.ly/1nhTHAd

* Must Read: Big Changes for Amazon Categories

In the ever-changing world of Amazon, categories have been replaced by themes. Learn how they work:

http://bit.ly/UhnxOs

* What’s at the End of Your Book? Use This Opportunity to Engage with Readers!

The end of your book is the perfect place to market to your readers. Some great ideas from Otis Chandler of Goodreads:

http://youtu.be/KimUUOSfCgY

* Authors Who Say “I Don’t Have Enough Time for Promotion” Are Doomed to Fail

You have to make the time, but the good news is you can build a fan base in 30 minutes a day. Here’s how:

http://bit.ly/17tzS5z



Big Changes for Amazon Categories
June 19, 2014by: Penny
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Category Amazon 2Sometimes Amazon is a bit of a moving target, which does keep a person trying to track their changes very much on their toes.

In prior blog posts, and in my book How to Sell Books by the Truckload on Amazon (http://www.amazon.com/Sell-Your-Books-Truckload-Amazon-com-ebook/dp/B00CJ0USL0/ref=sr_1_2?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1403119784&sr=1-2&keywords=how+to+sell+books+by+the+truckload+on+amazon), I’ve talked about niche categories on Amazon. Meaning that you can and should keep your title in a niche category within a broad market. Let me explain this first so the rest of this piece makes sense.

When you load a book onto Amazon, they give you the option to put it into two major categories. Most of us want to hit the top of our main category but this isn’t a great business model for Amazon because most of the bigger categories are too cluttered with titles. Hitting top of category, regardless of the size of the category, will give some extra juice to your Amazon book and make it easier for readers to discover your book.

I encourage authors to dig deep within their book categories to find something really niche. When I first published How to Sell Books by the Truckload on Amazon I put it into Direct Marketing which, at the time, had only 82 other competing titles. It was a sub-category of Business and Marketing which was perfect for this title. Now, however, things are changing. Amazon has eliminated a lot of these categories.

For example, if you have a fiction book, and you have access to your Amazon back end, you should look at your settings and see where you have placed your book because in all likelihood, that’s changed, and/or the category you picked no longer exists. Amazon still has some subcategories within fiction and genre fiction, but not nearly as many as they used to offer. A good example of this would be the uber-cluttered market, “Contemporary Romance.” This segment used to have a lot of niche categories, including “Dramas,” which has just a small number of titles in it.

 

Niche Romance category

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

If you’re competing in a category with, let’s say, under fifty titles, it’s pretty likely that you’ll hit top of category easily and get that extra “juice” from Amazon. Now, however, this segment looks very different.

For Westerns, you used to be able to click on this category and find links to other sub-sub genres within this market, but now Amazon has implemented something called Themes, see the left hand side of this screenshot:

 

Amazon themes screenshot

 

 

 

 

 

 

What does that mean for you? Well, it’s really important because now readers can identify books they want to read by either romantic themes or romantic heroes, and if your book includes one or both of those elements and doesn’t utilize these theme keywords, you won’t get found. How do you make this happen?

First, start with searching your category. I have been sharing this link: http://www.amazon.com/-/b/?node=1000 and while this link does still work, it won’t give you the detail on the themes the way this will:

Go to www.amazon.com and by “Search,” where it says ”All:”

Aamzon all

 

 

Change that to Kindle Store and then click “Go” – this will now take you to everything in the Kindle store and you can then find the themes that accompany your book’s genre.

Amazon Kindle Store

 

When you get to the Kindle store, click on Kindle eBooks (left hand side). From there, you’ll get this screen (your “Recently viewed” will look different, but the left side is still the same)

ebook listing on Amazon

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Click on your genre and start digging through the drop-down menu.

Adding Themes to Your Book

Adding themes is not hard, but you should be clear on what your book is about and, again, niche themes are good as long as they relate to your book. You insert themes by adding the single keyword to your Amazon back end, like this:

Love triangle Amazon

 

 

Within the seven allowed keywords, you’ll include your theme word or words. When I did this for a title we’re working on, the book started to show up within that search track in less than 24 hours, so it works pretty fast.

I might also suggest including your theme words in your book description, as long as it flows naturally with what you have already written.

Finally, here is a screenshot of the back end of Amazon (if you have an account there you’ll have access to this as well via this link: https://kdp.amazon.com/help?topicId=A200PDGPEIQX41

This section of your Amazon account is designed to guide you to the appropriate keywords to use to capture traffic within the individual themes. Here is what that page might look like if you clicked Romance:

Romance Amazon

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

If you don’t have access to this back end, but you can change the keywords on your Amazon book, I would suggest that you just pick the appropriate theme word, as listed on the left hand side of the Amazon search page, and insert that as a keyword.

For some of the books, including non-fiction titles, the new themes have not yet appeared. According to someone I contacted at Amazon/KDP, they are rolling themes out incrementally so you should keep an eye out for the changes.

Additionally, while currently you can only update these themes on the back end of your Amazon account, someone from Amazon Author Central told me that they will incorporate this into your Author Central page so you can add themes from there.

 

 

 

 



52 Ways to Market Your Book: Tip #9 – Making the Sale
June 17, 2014by: Penny
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Welcome to Tip #9 of our 52 Ways to Market Your Book! I hope you’re enjoying these tips and they are helping you sell more books.  So, ready? Here we go!

Making the Sale

Now more than ever, if you want to make the sale you’ve got to be persuasive. But not so persuasive that it seems you’re begging for the sale or (God forbid) sucking up. Frankly consumers hate both.

9

1. Name dropping: While most of us find name dropping obnoxious, this is one time when it’s not only permitted, it’s encouraged. If you have an impressive list of testimonials, blurbs, or clients be sure and list them. If you’re not sure which ones to list and which to drop (lucky you if you have too many to chose from) then collaborate with someone who can be objective and offer decisive feedback. This first step is very critical and often overlooked. In fact I’ve been guilty of it. Some months back a friend of mine pointed to all the bestsellers we’ve worked on. “Why aren’t these listed on your site?” Well, they were but we had yet to highlight their success. Why? Because we were too close to our own message. An objective eye is often crucial to help you determine what to highlight and emphasize that will bring you sales.

2. Testimonials: Let’s face it, people like what other people like so if you have folks who say good things about your book, business or whatever it is you’re selling you should emphasize that.

3. Stories: People love stories. If you have a great success story be sure and share it on your web site. If you don’t have a good story (yet) you can always start gathering them. There’s no time like the present to get started.

 

The Growth Of Sales

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AME Blog Carnival: Tips and Tricks for Writers and Authors – June 16, 2014
June 16, 2014by: Paula
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Welcome to the Author Marketing Experts Blog Carnival. This week we’ve got insights on writing, and social media. Thank you to this week’s contributors!

Writing

Chrys Fey submitted How to Create a Heroine of Steel posted at Write with Fey, saying, “In your story, make the heroine’s role important. Give her big things to do. Don’t just have her fall in love with the hero, or rely on him to save her. Make her as physically strong and as smart as the hero.”

social-media-demographics

Social media

Erica Verrillo submitted Platform, Shmatform: Social Media – How Numbers Lie posted at Publishing … And Other Forms of Insanity, saying, “We live in an age where online popularity has the ridiculous ability to control major business decisions or determine someone’s career. Yet, there’s never been a time when big numbers can be inflated so easily and deceptively.”

That concludes this week’s carnival. Our weekly roundup offers the best book marketing, self-publishing, writing, and general publishing industry tips to guide authors, would-be authors, publishers and others on their book journey. Submit a post to our weekly carnival by using this link: http://www.amarketingexpert.com/submit-ame-blog-carnival/



Best of the Web Book Marketing Tips for the Week of June 9, 2014
June 13, 2014by: Paula
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Learn from these social media and publishing tweets, courtesy of bloggers, marketers, authors and others. The topics include social media tricks, Pinterest ideas, a book launch checklist, and more. Happy marketing!

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* How to Choose Keywords for Your Book on Amazon

Did you know your keywords show up in Google as well as on Amazon? Learn how to select the right keywords for your book:

http://bit.ly/1oUTq8U

* Book Launch Checklist

There are so many components to publishing a book. This handy checklist will walk you through pre-publication to the final product – your book:

http://bit.ly/1oOFxe7

book typewriter key

* Pinterest Ideas for the Indie Author

Authors are turning to Pinterest for promotion because the site offers so many opportunities. This terrific list is great to use, either for the examples or for brainstorming your own ideas:

http://ow.ly/xLOZt

* 7 Social Media Tricks You Haven’t Heard Before

Do you know how to feature positive fan comments on your timeline? Learn how – along with several other cool ideas:

http://bit.ly/1l1Lh4g

* 5 Mistakes You’ll Make on the Way to Publishing Success

There’s a lot to learn when you decide to publish a book. The first is rushing to publish. Learn from each of these examples:

http://bit.ly/1u8fbDz

* 10 Ways to Test Market Your Nonfiction Book Idea Before You Publish

These tips will prevent you from getting too far along in the publishing process; learn how to get feedback that will guide you. Think of it as nonfiction R&D:

http://bit.ly/1q4DXGZ



AME Blog Carnival: Tips and Tricks for Writers and Authors – June 9, 2014
June 9, 2014by: Paula
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Welcome to the Author Marketing Experts Blog Carnival. We’ve got insights on book marketing, websites, and writing. Thank you to this week’s contributors!

Book Marketing

Sarah Bolme presents Don’t Overlook This Marketing Opportunity posted at Marketing Christian Books, saying, “Many self-published authors don’t think about this great marketing venue.”

marketing maze

Frances Caballo presents 18 LinkedIn Best Practices for Writers posted at Social Media Just for Writers, saying, “In this post, I review statistics, character limits, and 18 best practices for writers using LinkedIn.”

Writing

Erica Verrillo presents Getting an Agent: Schmooze or You Lose posted at Publishing…And Other Forms of Insanity, saying, “It’s a sad fact of life – but getting your work into print is all about who you know. But if you don’t know anybody, don’t jump off a bridge – yet. You can meet people in the industry rather easily. Here is a list of great places to meet agents, editors, and other authors. A big smile and a bit of charm can go far.”

Websites

Walsh Group presents 10 Signs Your Website Needs an Update posted at The Walsh Group Blog, saying, “There’s a cliché floating around about websites- that they’re the “new business cards”. While this analogy can be useful, thinking about your business’ website in this way may skew your understanding of how it functions in one crucial respect. A website is, or at least should be, a dynamic, ever changing entity. A respectable website is one that is updated frequently.”

That concludes this week’s carnival. Our weekly roundup offers the best book marketing, self-publishing, writing, and general publishing industry tips to guide authors, would-be authors, publishers and others on their book journey. Submit a post to our weekly carnival by using this link: http://www.amarketingexpert.com/submit-ame-blog-carnival/

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