Author: Are You Doing These Marketing Activities?

I sometimes run into aspiring authors who tell me that they will only consider a traditional book contract for their manuscript. I have no problem with this mindset. I understand that desire to have a book accepted after being vetted by an editor.

Are you doing these marketing activities?

However, some of these authors are holding onto the ideal of a traditional book contract because they believe that the publisher will market the book for them. They like the idea of just writing.

The truth is that authors—whether traditionally published or indie published—are largely responsible for the marketing of their books. In fact, one royalty-paying, Christian publisher states right on their website their expectations of authors. Here is what this publisher says:

Author must:

  • Have created a fully developed marketing plan.
  • Keep a web presence.
  • Be technology savvy.
  • Know how to copy and paste URLs.
  • Can search the web for answers and solutions.
  • Check email daily.
  • Participate in book promotions.
  • Reach out to fan base.
  • Never, ever give up the book!

These expectations are not unreasonable. If you are an indie published author, at the least, you should already be doing these things for your book—especially the last one.

Sadly, I often see indie published authors give up on their books too soon. Book marketing is long-haul trucking. You have to be in it for the long haul to see success.

In addition to the author expectations, this traditional, royalty-paying publisher listed what they would do to market each author’s book. Here is what this publisher says they will do:

Publisher will:

  • Advertise the book with Amazon ads and Goodreads ads.
  • Provide digital Advance Review Copies through BookFunnel.
  • Offer Rafflecopter giveaways of print and digital copies.
  • Submit your book for review to Publishers Weekly.
  • Offer the Kindle version of the book for FREE or 99 cents with Kindle Select promotions.

Trade Show Floor

To be honest, I don’t think this is much marketing support. I don’t see anything about providing the following marketing activities:

  • Press Release
  • Author Media Kit
  • List of Radio and Podcast Show Interviewing Authors
  • Trade Show Representation
  • Foreign Rights Representation

If you are a self-published author, then you wear both the author and the publisher hat. This means that these additional publisher duties for marketing fall under your jurisdiction. Ask yourself: Am I doing all these marketing activities for my book?

If you are an Indie author and you need support in marketing your book, Christian Indie Publishing Association (CIPA) is here to help you. We provide support and information for marketing your book including reference guides for creating press releases and media kits, a list of radio and podcast shows that interview authors, and numerous cooperative marketing opportunities. Join today at www.christianpublishers.net.

Related Posts:
A Book Marketing Recipe
Marketing Is a Mindset
Market Your Novel Like a Pro

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Photo courtesy of Kaboompics.com.

Are You Using the Right URL?

Your first impression depends on how firm your handshake is.” ~@Yushi

Presentation matters. I recently took my son to a new doctor for a consultation. The doctor entered the room with baggy scrubs and a Star Wars head rap and he barely touched my hand for the handshake. Within seconds my brain had formed an opinion.

Use the right URL.

My brain took in this information and made the decision that this doctor was not competent. Of course, these first impressions had nothing to do with this doctor’s competence. He probably just came from surgery. Clearly, he was a Star Wars fan. And maybe he was afraid of getting germs or just did not like physical contact, so he barely touched my hand for a handshake.

After talking with this doctor for a few minutes, my confidence in his knowledge and abilities began to grow. However, I had to make the conscious decision to give this doctor a chance because my brain had already made a decision based on my first impression.

As an author, you may or may not get time to change a person’s initial impression from their contact with you. It is important that you appear competent from the get go.

Being competent means that you have the necessary ability, knowledge or skill to do something successfully. You have a short window of opportunity on first impression to demonstrate to your audience that you are competent.

One area that I often see Indie author’s look incompetent is through the URL address they give for their book, especially an Amazon URL.

Frequently, an author will give a long Amazon URL like this:

https://www.amazon.com/Your-Guide-Marketing-Christian-Books/dp/0991299515/ref=sr_1_1?keywords=sarah+bolme&qid=1560436167&s=gateway&sr=8-1

What the author did was go to Amazon.com and enter in her name or book title in the search bar. Then the author clicked on the correct book that came up in the search, which took them to this long URL.

URL

 

However, this is not the URL for the book on Amazon. Rather, it is a URL from a search for the book. Yes, the URL will take someone to the book’s page, but to anyone who understands URLs, it will look dumb. The second part of the URL starting with the word “ref=” is not needed.

https://www.amazon.com/Your-Guide-Marketing-Christian-Books/dp/0991299515/ref=sr_1_1?keywords=sarah+bolme&qid=1560436167&s=gateway&sr=8-1

The proper URL to use to direct people to your book on Amazon is the first portion that ends with the last 10-digits of your book’s 13-digit ISBN. The proper link should look like this:

https://www.amazon.com/Your-Guide-Marketing-Christian-Books/dp/0991299515/

If you want, you can make the URL even shorter by removing the book title in the link and make it:

https://www.amazon.com/dp/0991299515

If you are using an exceptionally long URL and are not sure what the correct portion is to use, then head on over to a URL shortening service and create a short URL to use instead. Free URL shorting services include:

Present a competent image in your use of URL links to purchase your book. Use the correct link or shorten the link for ease of use.

Related Posts:
First Impressions Matter
Why Should Someone Buy Your Book?
Amazon: King of Book Sales

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