Book Marketing Blogs

by Penny Sansevieri
Simple Ways to Get More Exposure on Google
July 24, 2014by: Penny
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The first thing to know about G+ is that it’s really a mini-blog post. What does this mean? Well, longer content really rules on G+, as opposed to Facebook or Twitter – where shorter updates are a must. If you follow this line of thinking, you know that G+ should mirror whatever you’re doing on your blog which means, first and foremost, your headlines:

G+ Exposure 1

Headlines: headlines are really important on this site although this is significant with anything you do. Headlines can make or break your post. We cover more on creating great headlines here: http://www.amarketingexpert.com/create-viral-content-really/

Images: always, always, always add an image. I never pull in the image from the post I’m sharing, I’ll always add one. You can find great, cheap and even free images at places like BigStock, etc. and you can edit them at Canva.com, PicMonkey.com or Befunky.com

Hashtags: Repeat after me, never, ever, ever post anything without a hashtag. I use them on Facebook, Twitter and, of course, G+.

Format: though I encourage you to create longer, blog post-type updates, I would suggest that you remember the importance of formatting. G+ lets you format your updates with bold, italics, strikethrough and bullet points. Here are some formats you may want to keep for later use:

Bold: add * before and after the word or sentence. *So your update will look like this*

Italic: add _ before and after the word or sentence. _So your headline will look like this_

Strikethrough: add – before and after the word or sentence. –This is what you’ll strikethrough-

To create a numbered list, you’ll want to do this:

*1.*

*2.*

And so on – this will create this:

  1. Create strong headlines
  2. Long posts rocks on G+
  3. Make sure and format your text

Next up are bullets, to create those you’ll do:

  • Create strong headlines
  • Long posts rocks on G+
  • Make sure and format your text

You can also mix and match these, making italics bold and so on. Go ahead, experiment. Remember you can always edit the post later!

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Secrets of Getting Into Bookstores: Tip #14 of 52 Ways to Market Your Book
July 22, 2014by: Penny
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Welcome to Tip #14 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!

Secrets for Getting into Bookstores

Let’s face it, regardless of the odds we authors still want to get into bookstores. But if you’ve been having a hard time with this, take heart. It’s getting harder and harder to get into stores, but not impossible. We’re going to look at some of the possibilities here.

First, it’s important to understand the pressure stores are under right now. With the increased focus on publishers to get their authors out there, bookstores are being given most of their marching orders by their corporate office. Bookstore shelf space is bought and paid for by the New York publishers, making getting on the shelves or display racks a bit tricky – if not impossible. So here’s a game plan for those of you trying to survive outside of the traditional market.

141. Get to know your local store: I know this might sound obvious, but you’d be surprised how many authors don’t really know the people in their local store. The thing is, if you know them, they know you. Then, when you’re ready to promote your book they might be more open to having you in their store if you have taken the time to get to know them.

2. Events: One way to get into a bookstore is by doing an event. Sometimes when you do an event the store may stock the book before and after you’ve done your program. Start to follow the types of events they do at the store. Get an events calendar or get on their email list. You’ll start to see trends emerge. For example, they might have an independent author night you could participate in. Also be cautious for big releases, like the recent Stephanie Meyer events many stores had planned. If you are trying to capture the attention of a store when they’re in the middle of a major book launch, you’re likely to be ignored.

a) Book signings are boring; offer to do an event instead. Events are a draw; book signings aren’t unless you’re a celebrity. Plan to do a talk, educate, entertain, or enlighten. This will be a more attractive pitch to the bookstore and will draw more people to your talk.

b) Get to know the local authors in your area and then offer to plan events for them. Here’s how this works: Bookstores are inundated with local authors asking for a time slot, but what if you went to the bookstore manager and said that you’d be willing to coordinate a once a month event featuring all the local authors? The bookstore could just refer all local independently published authors to you, you could coordinate this – and guess what? Not only are you helping the store, but guess who’s getting a monthly showcase in their store? You. You can do this with more than one store if you have the time, but keep in mind that with cutbacks often one store manager will oversee a few locations so you might only have to go through one person.

c) If they won’t let you coordinate a monthly event, suggest that they have an Independent author night if they haven’t already started this. If they have an Independent author night you should definitely participate, it’s a great way to gain exposure, not to mention network with some local people.

3. Local marketing: Don’t forget any marketing you do locally, whether it’s speaking in venues outside of the bookstores, television, radio, or print. All of this can drive traffic into the bookstores. Market locally and when you do, let the stores know you’re going to have a feature or appearance so they can stock the book, if they want to. It’s always a great idea to get to know the managers or buyers for your local stores so you can alert them to media or an event you’re doing. This not only keeps you and your book on their radar screen, but it’s a nice courtesy to offer them. Most managers are stretched pretty thin and appreciate the buying tip, whenever they can get it. Even if they choose not to stock your book the first or second time, keep alerting them to your promotion. Eventually they just might.

4. Funnel your buyers: Try as best you can to funnel everyone to one store to purchase your book. If you’re having a tough time getting shelf space (and aren’t we all?), funneling folks to one store might prompt that store to keep a few copies of your book on hand. Whenever you do local speaking or media, let them know by name and address where they can get your book. Stores have been known to take in books that they’re getting lots of requests for, regardless of how they are published.  If you’re sending people to one store – instead of fragmenting them to a bunch of different ones – you could start building an ongoing interest in reorders, and sometimes all it takes is one store to stock it before the neighboring stores will follow suit.

Getting into bookstores isn’t impossible, but it does require a dash of creativity. Keep in mind that if bookstores still aren’t receptive after you’ve tried the tips in this article then maybe you’re sitting in a tight market. Areas like Los Angeles, New York and Chicago might be tough areas to get noticed, because these are often the first stops traditional publishers seek when planning author tours and getting stocked on the shelves. If you’re near those areas, try looking outside of the city for alternatives that are often overlooked by New York. If that doesn’t work for you, then consider non-bookstore shelf space and events. If you’re not sure how to do this, check out my other article on events outside of the normal bookstore market, http://huff.to/cx05E2.

Over the years we’ve planned events for our authors in all sorts of non-bookstore venues such as: video stores, electronics stores, gyms and even grocery stores. If events are your focus, keep an open mind and remember: often the biggest piece of getting your book into a bookstore is the relationship you build with them.

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AME Blog Carnival: Tips and Tricks for Writers and Authors – July 21, 2014
July 21, 2014by: Paula
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Welcome to this week’s Author Marketing Experts’ Blog Carnival. We have some great insights into book marketing, writing, and getting published in this edition. Thank you to this week’s contributors!

Writing

Chrys Fey submitted Writing About: Your Toughest Moment posted at Write With Fey, saying, “When you have to write about your toughest moment in life it can be overwhelming and scary. How do you capture the most difficult experience (or day) you’ve ever had to go through, and write about it? Where do you begin?”

manuscript

Getting Published

Erica Verrillo submitted 5 Horror and Dark Fiction Publishers Accepting Unsolicited Manuscripts posted at Publishing… And Other Forms of Insanity saying, “Horror is an immensely popular genre. (Zombies! Vampires! Werewolves!) Perhaps, for that reason there are relatively few publishers accepting unagented manuscripts. (Many horror publishers say they are “swamped.”) The publishers I have listed here accept a variety of formats: short stories, poems, and novels. Please read their guidelines carefully.”

Book Sales/Marketing

Lisa Romeo submitted Guest Blogger Kim Ablon Whitney on Writing Niche Novels, Writing What You Know posted at Lisa Romeo Writes, saying, “Guest blogger Kim Ablon Whitney writes about her decision to write more novels about what she knows and had already begun building an audience for.”

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 July 14, 2014
July 18, 2014by: Paula
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We’ve rounded up some savvy book marketing tweets – courtesy of bloggers, marketers, authors and others – that offer plenty of ideas and inspiration. The topics include building a street team for your book, using Google+ for social media contests, unlocking your Facebook fans, and more. Happy marketing!

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* How to Create a Street Team for Your Book

What’s a street team? They are people in your online community you gather together to help you launch your book. Learn how they can be effective:

http://buildbookbuzz.com/how-to-create-a-street-team-for-your-book/

word block saying authors

* 6 Things That Will Happen a Few Days Before Your Book Comes Out

You have conflicting feelings when your book is about to launch, but remember – it’s normal:

http://www.petermball.com/2014/07/10/six-things-that-will-happen-a-few-days-before-your-book-comes-out/

* How Authors Can Build Their Audience on Instagram

If you haven’t tried Instagram for promotion, there are several ways you can use the site to grow a following:

http://selfpublishingteam.com/how-authors-can-build-their-audience-on-instagram/

* Unlock Your Facebook Fans: Grow the Audience You Didn’t Even Know You Had

Learn how Facebook ads can help you reach visitors to your site and turn them into loyal fans:

http://www.digitalinformationworld.com/2014/07/facebook-growth-hack-social-media-infographic.html

* A Hook vs an Elevator Pitch: What’s the Difference?

For starters, one is written and the other is spoken. Learn how to distinguish the two and make them effective:

http://www.fromthewriteangle.com/2014/07/the-difference-between-hook-and.html

* How to Use Google+ for Social Media Contests

Did you know that you can promote your contests on G+? Learn how you can be successful:

http://www.socialmediaexaminer.com/google-plus-for-social-media-contests/

* 12 Most Basic Ways for Beginners to Rock Twitter

Twitter gets 135,000 new users each day. If you’re just getting started, or need a refresher, learn how you can get the most out of Twitter:

http://12most.com/2014/07/08/12-basic-ways-beginners-rock-twitter/



Pinterest Tools To Help You Build Followers
July 17, 2014by: Penny
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Pinterest Tools to Help You Build Followers

POSTED Pinterest tools 07172014PinAlerts: As the name suggests, they will alert you to when someone pins something from your website which is super helpful to know. You can then connect with the pinners if you want, or thank them for posting!

Postris: This site helps you find influential pinners, boards, and pins. Browsing this site will let you find new accounts to follow and new pinners to engage with.

Pinvolve:  A great app that syncs your Facebook business page with Pinterest. You can post  pins to Pinterest and they’ll automatically get pulled into Facebook. There are several plans, the basic is free, other plans run $9 to $25 a month.

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How’s Your Online Reputation? Tip #13 of 52 Ways to Market Your Book
July 15, 2014by: Penny
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Welcome to Tip #13 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!

How’s Your Online Reputation?

TIp 13For years Google alerts has been great for watching what’s being said about you online. But now there are a few other players, check out these online reputation management tools. They’re a great way to keep track of what’s being said about you, your book and/or product online.

Addict-o-matic: I was really surprised when I first logged on here how much stuff was out there on me that Google Alerts didn’t pick up. This is a free service and a great resource, the only complaint I have is there is no RSS feed that I can subscribe to, to keep me posted on weekly or even daily additions. Hopefully that will come soon, for now, here’s the link: http://addictomatic.com/. The best part about this service is that it doesn’t require that I sign in or signup for anything. I like that. I have way too many subscriptions and passwords I can’t remember as it is.

Trackur.com: this site claims to be Google alerts on steroids. The write-ups I’ve seen are great and the site or the write-ups don’t lie. It’s not a free service (though they offer a free trial) but the service is quite thorough and outstanding. Give it a shot and see what you think.

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AME Blog Carnival: Tips and Tricks for Writers and Authors – July 14, 2014
July 14, 2014by: Paula
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Welcome to this week’s Author Marketing Experts’ Blog Carnival. We have some great insights into writing and self-publishing in this edition. Thank you to this week’s contributors!

Self-Publishing

Colin Dunbar submitted Format a Book in Word: Headings, Headers & Footers posted at Format Book in Word, saying, “Design your book with Word like a professional… Headings are used to help your readers find their way around your book. They also help in letting your reader know what the paragraphs following the heading are about. They are especially useful in non-fiction books.”

Daley James submitted My Self-Publishing Journey #1 – Taking the Decision posted at Daley James Francis, saying, “The blog post is about my decision to self-publish, and my hopes and fears about using the form to get my writing out there.”

Erica Verrillo submitted What Makes a Successful Ebook posted at Publishing… And Other Forms of Insanity, saying, “What does a successful ebook look like? If it is fiction, it is priced between $2.99 and $3.99, is more than 50,000 words, is part of a series, and has been placed on a pre-order list.”

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Writing

Chrys Fey submitted Writing About: Your Character’s Toughest Moment posted at Write With Fey, saying, “Here are 4 tips to help you write about your character’s toughest moments.”

Cynthia Herron submitted Top 10 Ways Writers Save Time posted at Cynthia Herron, saying, “This post is about time management and writing, It offers practical productivity tips for writers.”

Karyn Lawrence submitted Transitioning From Screenwriter to Author posted at Karyn Lawrence, saying, “A recap of my experience transitioning from 12 years of screenwriting into self-publishing.”

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 July 7, 2014
July 11, 2014by: Paula
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Get some marketing savvy courtesy of these book marketing tweets, from bloggers, marketers, authors and others. The topics include how book cover clichés can help sell books, tools to increase blog retweets, seven book promotion sins, and more. Happy marketing!

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* 5 Twitter Tools to Increase Your Blog Retweets

These tools – like Click to Tweet – are easy to install and use!

http://bit.ly/1lLujnH

bigstock-Author-Presenting-His-New-Book-55765136

* How to Attract Your Target Reader With These Language Tips and Tricks

There’s a lot of buzz about creating great, captivating headlines, but if that’s all you’ve got your readers will leave your site and never return:

http://bit.ly/1nHYywe

* Seven Deadly Sins of Book Promotion

Oh yes, sloth, pride, envy, etc. can all have a negative impact on your marketing:

http://bit.ly/1pY48jM

* Agent Views on Manuscripts That Have Been Self-Published

This is a must-read for self-published authors – or authors considering self-publishing in the hopes it will get them a traditional publishing deal:

http://ow.ly/yR9Nl

* Book Cover Clichés: Why Using Them Will Actually Help You Sell More Books

If covers in certain genres look familiar, it’s intentional. Learn how it affects book sales:

http://bit.ly/1w1TeXR

* Killer Writing Tools That Will Help You Get the Job Done

These tools can help you stay on schedule, develop better content, and ensure a larger audience sees your work:

http://buff.ly/1j8BGbP

* 5 Reasons You’re Not Ready to Self-Publish Your Book

Sometimes, it’s better to wait before self-publishing. Use this checklist as a guide to determine if you’re ready:

http://bit.ly/1olDv4m



How To Create Viral Content (Really)
July 10, 2014by: Penny
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Want your next blog post to go viral. Here’s a tip: Start with a headline. People open blog posts based on the headline, that’s really key so you have to start there. Headlines cause blog posts to go viral, the blog content, while important is not as key as the headline.

To get started, download a copy of Jon Morrow’s Headline Hacks (you can sign up for it here: http://boostblogtraffic.com/)

POSTED How to Create Viral Content 07102014Here are a few tips that I’ve learned on how to create some great headlines:

Numbers rock: People love things like 7 Ways To, 10 Ideas For… so try to use a number in your headline whenever possible.

Caps: headlines with the first letter of each word capped did better than a headline with just the first letter of the first word capped. Using all caps? I’d skip it. All caps always sounds LIKE YELLING.

Questions? Turns out, questions don’t do as well as you might think. Titles that phrased the headline in the form of a question didn’t get as many shares as you might think.

Your focus is your reader: Make sure that you address your reader in the headline. Your Guide to, or something similar will help create more exposure for your headline.

 

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Read Blogs in Your Market: Tip #12 of 52 Ways to Market Your Book
July 8, 2014by: Penny
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Welcome to Tip #12 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!

Read blogs in your market

It’s really that simple: read what others are saying about your market. Even if you write fiction you can read up on publishing and other topics related to your book.

So why would you want to do this? Here are 5 reasons why you should stay dialed into your market online Tip 12

  1. You’ll hear about trends faster if you keep reading blogs by thought leaders in your market. Generally if an idea is good, you’ll see it on a few blogs before it hits the news.
  2. It’s a great way to connect with others. I talk about this in Social Networking on Blogs (See Selling Strategy #26).
  3. You won’t be clueless. Let’s face it, the worst thing that could happen is that you get a media interview and the interviewer asks you a question you should know the answer to, but you don’t. We can’t be expected to know everything but you should keep tabs on your market.
  4. Great ideas for blogging: If you’re eager to find new blog topics, why not dig into trending topics? The more blogs you read, the more ideas you’ll get.
  5. Sales ideas: Not only will you stay dialed into your market but reading blogs in your industry might give you new sales ideas or new ways to market your book.

So what’s the best way to read blogs? Subscribe to the RSS feed (really simple syndication) and capture all your blog listings in one spot through Feedly, which is a user friendly feed reader. I run all my feeds though there and it’s in one place. Easy!

How Popular is Your Topic?

One way to find out is to track it on Google Alerts. Try plugging in your keyword to see what comes up. You can access Google Alerts by going to Google and typing in Google Alerts in the search bar. Alerts are free and a really easy way to track what’s happening in your market. Keeping track of what’s being said, featured, and written about your brand is a good way to know how popular it is and who is saying what in your market.

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