Are You Using AIDA to Hook Buyers?

So tell me quick and tell me true, or else, my love, to hell with you!
Less – How this product came to be.
More – What the damn thing does for me!

So ends a poem on advertising by Victor Schwab titled “Tell Me Quick and Tell Me True”.

Poor language aside, these lines sum up some good advice on marketing and advertising copy. Providing more information does not guarantee that the recipient will get your message. Sometimes using fewer words has a greater impact. Keeping your words lean makes them clearer and more memorable.

One model widely used in marketing and advertising can help you be more direct and clear in your marketing communication. The model covers the four steps consumers move through in making a purchase decision. The model is:

AIDA:  Attention, Interest, Desire, and Action.

AIDA represents the four areas your marketing messages need to cover to move a customer to action. Here is a breakdown of the process:

  • Attention: Grab potential reader’s attention by using words that are important to them.
  • Interest: After you have their attention, then you want to build their curiosity. The goal is to keep them engaged to move them to the next step.
  • Desire: Tell your potential readers what is in it for them. Whet their appetite so that you fan desire to read your book. Convince them they want to read your book.
  • Action: Finish with a call to action. Tell the interested reader what to do next—buy the book, read the first chapter free, etc.

Any marketing graphic you create about your book for your website, social media, catalog, magazine, etc., should contain all four of these elements. Consider this Coca-Cola ad.

The picture of a young happy couple grabs your attention. The term happiness grows your interest. Then #openhappiness grows desire. The idea that you might be able to actually drink a bottle of coke and feel happy creates a strong desire. An explicit call to action is missing in this advertisement, but it definitely is implied: “Buy Coke, drink it, and you will feel happy.”

You can easily implement AIDA in your marketing materials starting with your book cover. Make sure that your book’s cover (your #one marketing tool) draws people’s attention and creates interest and desire.

Photo courtesy of Bruce Mars.

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Six Marketing Hooks to Grab Your Audience
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Grow Your Writing and Marketing to the Next Level

Mahatma Gandhi said, “Live as if you were to die tomorrow. Learn as if you were to live forever.”

There is always more to learn. There is always room for improvement. As an author or publisher, to stay relevant and up-to-date, you must continually learn. Publishing standards change. Technology changes. With these changes, you must learn and adapt what you do to be effective in reaching your target audience.

I recently served as a faculty member at the Carolina Christian Writers Conference. One of the events at the conference was called “Lightning Learning”. For this event, the conference attendees were broken up into groups. Then each group met for five minutes with each faculty member to discuss a “learning tip” that the faculty had prepared in advance for attendees.

When you have a group of experts offering advice, the learning opportunity is incredibly rich. I think some of the advice that the faculty shared is worth sharing with you. So, here are a few “Lightning Learning” tips from that event.

“What do you need to do before you start writing? Pray. Then pray some more! Just as you followed the call, seek God’s wisdom in every area of your writing.”
Gloria Penwell, www.boldvisionbooks.com

 

“Before you write your book or article, know your target audience. Keep them in mind as you write and write in a way that speaks and resonates with them. Doing this will increase the effectiveness of your writing and any marketing activities you do for your book or article.”
Sarah Bolme, www.christianpublishers.net

 “To write is to sacrifice, as professional writing requires a commitment of time away from people and activities. Take time to determine what level of time requirement you need to schedule for yourself, and specifically what things you are currently doing that you need to sacrifice in order to have the time to write.”
Craig von Buseck, www.inspiration.org

“Be recognizable online. This means having a professional picture for all social media/online sites that is recognizable from one platform to another. Keep your bio consistent. Make sure no one will ever be surprised when they meet you in person because you represent yourself differently online.
Edie Melson, www.thewriteconversation.blogspot.com

“What would happen to your work in progress if you spilled your morning coffee into the computer keyboard or downloaded a virus that ate your hard drive and destroyed your files? Writers need an automatic computer backup system.”
Lori Hatcher, www.reachoutcolumbia.com

 

If you have your own writing or marketing tip you want to share with other authors, please do so in the comment section. Share your wisdom so we call can learn.

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Age-Old Marketing Wisdom for Authors
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Are You Using Videos in Your Marketing Efforts?

In 2017, 90% of the most shared content on social media was in video format. The increase of video online is phenomenal. Check out these statistics:

  • 55% of people watch videos online every day.
  • By 2019, global consumer Internet video traffic will account for 80% of all consumer Internet traffic.
  • 92% of mobile video consumers share videos with others.
  • Companies using video enjoy 41% more web traffic from search than non-users.

Not only are people watching videos online, businesses are finding that videos are effective in selling products. Here are some more statistics that back up this claim:

  • 90% of users say that product videos are helpful in the decision process.
  • Including a video on a landing page can increase conversion rates by 80%.
  • After watching a video, 64% of users are more likely to buy a product online.

Videos are a powerful marketing tool. Should you be using them? Yes.

Creating videos to use in your book marketing campaigns can be a challenge, especially if you write fiction. Other than creating a book trailer for your book, what type of content should you put in your videos?

Interestingly, Curata, a content creation company, found that the top three most effective types of video content are:

  1. Customer testimonials (51%)
  2. Tutorial videos (50%)
  3. Demonstration videos (49%)

Here is the good news. Every author can create the most effective videos—customer testimonials.

Customer testimonial videos don’t have to be fancy. They can just be a quick 30 to 60 second video of a reader talking about how great your book is. Just like this testimonial video for my book Your Guide to Marketing Books in the Christian Marketplace.

Getting customer testimonial videos doesn’t have to be difficult. With a Smartphone camera, you can take them and your readers can create them. Here are three quick ideas to help obtain customer testimonial videos on your book:

  1. Film your friends or family members who love your book sharing their thoughts.
  2. Ask your readers to film their review of your book and share it with you.
  3. Hold a contest with a great prize (like a gift card to a restaurant) and make the entry requirement be that readers share a video of themselves raving about your book.

Make videos a part of your marketing plan for 2018. Start today. Get one or two video testimonials from readers that you can share on your website and on all your social media channels.

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Creating a Book Video Trailer
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Do You Believe in Your Book?

I recently heard about a woman who loves to write. People who read her manuscript tell her that her book would sell. The writing is phenomenal.

Because this woman does not have a platform and would be a first-time author, others encouraged her to indie publish her book. One indie publisher actually offered to publish it for her.

However, the woman declined. She did not like the idea of having to promote and market her book. She did not want to do all those activities. Instead, she wanted someone to do those for her.

She found a company that told her they would publish and market her book for $10,000. They showed her how to start a Go Fund Me account to have people give her the $10,000.

Here is the irony. It takes promotion and marketing to get people to fund a crowdfunding project. So, whether this woman wanted to admit it or not, she had already begun to promote and market her book—the very thing she was opposed to doing.

If you are like this woman and don’t like the idea of promoting or marketing your book, consider this question:

Do I believe that my book has the power to help someone change their life for eternity?

Marketing a Christian book is a lot like sharing the Gospel. How will people hear and believe unless you tell them?

It’s not “send someone else” but “Here I am, send me.”

You won’t spread the Gospel if you don’t believe it is true and has the power to change people’s lives. The same is true for your book. You have to believe in your book, that it has information that people need to improve their lives to be able to promote it.

Here is another way to look at it:

  • Would you send ten emails to turn a person away from bitterness to forgiveness?
  • Could you push yourself to do a radio interview if you knew someone listening would seek treatment for their addiction and be restored to God?
  • How many restored marriages is a book signing worth?

Here’s the deal. When God is in an activity with you, it’s not your power, your strength, your genius that is driving the results. It’s God.

Marketing your Christian book is not about promoting yourself. It’s about promoting a message that the God of the Universe entrusted you to write down and share. It’s about spreading the Gospel and bringing light to a dark world.

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Photo courtesy of Ben White.

The Antidote to Holiday Travel Stress

If you have ever traveled for the holidays, you know that it is stressful. Holiday travel is often marked by crowds, delays, and traffic jams. All this stress can cause headaches, heartburn, and short tempers.

Here is the good news:
Authors and publishers have the cure for holiday travel stress.

Barnes & Noble, Inc., the world’s largest retail bookseller, recently commissioned an independent survey to explore consumer reading habits around the holiday season. Conducted as an online poll among the U.S. general population, the study revealed that Americans turn to books and periodicals on Thanksgiving Eve more than any other day of the year to help ease the stress of traveling. Historically, the Thanksgiving holiday is the busiest travel time of the year.

The study also found that:

  • 73% study participants reported that reading makes a trip more relaxing.
  • 72% said reading a book they enjoy makes their trip more enjoyable.

It appears that READING is a great antidote to holiday travel stress.

Additionally, study participants also reported that the top five benefits of reading a book while traveling are:

  • Reading is a good pastime if I get delayed while traveling (56%).
  • Reading is relaxing and helps ease the stress of hectic traveling (53%).
  • A good book “transports” me somewhere else (47%).
  • I can catch up on books that I have wanted to read, but normally do not have the time to read (47%).
  • Reading gives me a chance to learn something new (46%).

Everyone wants holiday travel to be less stressful. Now you have the perfect countermeasure for holiday travel stress: Books for travelers to read!

This holiday season, in addition to promoting your book as a great gift, let people know that reading your book may well be the remedy they need to combat stressful holiday travel!

Feel free to use the graphic in this article to promote your books as a great way to combat holiday travel stress.

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Six Reasons Books Make Great Gifts
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