Finding Ways to Connect and Relate to Your Readership

by | Aug 31, 2011 | Book Marketing Basics, Social Media for Authors

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The primary concern of any writer – professional, amateur (and looking to go pro), or just starting to dabble – is writing. You want to transfer your ideas to the page, hone them for maximum intended impact, and then release them to the reader. But writing, as it turns out, is only the first step in getting your product to the people who will consume it.

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Whether you’re writing a blog, short stories, poetry, or the next great novel of our generation, you need to interest readers if you want them to buy the product; and this means you have to first reach them and then forge a connection. So if you’re looking for ways to get your work to the masses, here are a few modes of connection that you may want to consider.

  1. Guest blogging. The main goal for any writer is to become known. To that end, there is no better way to get your name out to whole communities of potential readers than by writing guest posts on related blogs. You can choose blogs that focus on your particular genre or go for sites that review the work of new authors (for example). But if you’re good at what you do, you’ll kill two birds with one stone: not only will you get your name out there and potentially promote your current body of work, but you’ll also deliver a sample of your writing at the same time.
  2. Image representing Twitter as depicted in Crun...

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    Social networking. If you don’t have a Facebook page and Twitter account it’s high time you joined the social media revolution. Once you get a few fans following you, you’re going to have to work to maintain and expand your readership and social networking can be a huge boon in this capacity. By keeping readers informed of upcoming events (signings, online sales, etc.) and providing them with added value over the average reader (excerpts, additional content, and so on) you can keep them interested and coming back for more.

  3. eBooks. Selling your books online is a great way to expand your readership. Although you will likely have to sell eBooks for less (at least initially) you may find that gaining more followers is well worth any potential loss of revenue. Think of it this way: you could have the same 1,000 readers gobbling up everything you write at full price from real-world stores or you could hook 10,000 online for a fraction of the price (with the hope that they may be willing to pay more later on).
  4. A Picture of a eBook

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    Signings. Doing it old school is nothing to scoff at.  While you can get a lot of attention by using an online marketing strategy to turn yourself into a brand, there’s simply no substitute for looking people in the eyes and shaking their hands. Making a personal connection with readers, however short-lived, is essential to keeping them hooked on your books. And you might be surprised by how much you can learn about your readers by listening to what they have to say about their likes and dislikes where your writing is concerned.

  5. Answering comments. Think of your website or blog like a couples counseling session by which you get to communicate with readers on a one-on-one basis in order to improve the relationship. Although it’s not quite as good as meeting in person, it’s still a great way to get feedback on your work, assess the marketplace for your product, and make your readers feel like you’re a real person instead of a cyber-robot. In short, everyone wins when you take the time to connect with your readers.

Guest post by Sarah Danielson. Sarah is a writer for Power of Two Marriage,, the best alternative to marriage counseling online. In her spare time she enjoys reading and she is currently writing a book on the joys of freelancing.


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