Are You Making a List?

Humans love lists. For years David Letterman employed his “Top 10” list nightly on his show. Lists are important because people love to categorize things, as well as know which things are more important than others.


One technique marketing professionals employ over and over again are lists. Lists are always popular. Lists like:

  • Top ten gifts to give for Christmas.
  • Five reasons to ditch your diet.
  • Seven reasons to start saving now.

You can use lists in marketing your books. Creating a list of reasons why someone should invest their time and money in your newest book is a great marketing technique.

I recently saw some findings from an online study conducted by Harris Poll on reading. This survey found the following:

  • 77% of U.S. adult respondents agree with the statement: “Reading has always been an important part of my life.”
  • 67% say reading puts them in a better mood.
  • 76% said their reading habits have increased over the past three years, and 44% attribute access to an e-reader, tablet or smartphone as the reason.

I think the second finding is a reason any author can incorporate into a list of reasons to read his/her book: 67% of people say reading puts them in a better mood.

So, when making out your list of reasons for people to read your latest book, include this one along with your other great reasons.

To get your creative juices flowing, let me share with you five reasons you should continue to read this blog:

  1.  It gives you great tips for marketing your books.
  2.  You stay informed about important new resources and trends in the publishing industry.
  3.  It is ranked among the Top 30 Websites for Indie Authors.
  4.  Each blog post is penned by an award-winning author.
  5.  67% of people say reading puts them in a better mood, so reading this blog should improve your mood.

Now, take some time and make a list for your newest book.

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A Marketing Lesson

I recently received a notice in the mail from a credit card company whose credit card I possess in my wallet. The company had sent me a complimentary notice of my credit score. They stated that they planned to continue to do this free-of-charge on a monthly basis. The reason: They want to be my favorite credit card.

credit cards

I think there is a lesson to be learned from this credit card company. The credit card business faces stiff competition. While there are only a few types of credit cards—Visa, Mastercard, Discover, and American Express—the number of businesses that offer these credit cards is enormous.

This is not unlike the book market. While there are a limited number of genres of books, the number of books in each category is massive. Book selling competition is fierce, much like the credit card competition.

To set themselves apart, my credit card company has decided to provide a service that is useful for me, the consumer—adding value to my life. In addition, the method they have chosen to deliver this service (monthly) ensure that their name will continually be brought to my attention with a positive association. The goal is that this reminder and association will make me more inclined to think of this credit card more frequently. The end result will be that I will use this particular credit card more often.

Consider how this lesson from a credit card company can help you sell more books.

What can you offer that will set your apart from the competition? What value-added service can you provide that will consistently bring your name and your book’s name in front of your potential readers?

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A Walking Advertisement

I recently saw a commercial that touted personalized covers for iPhones and Android phones. The slogan was something to the effect of never having to search for your kids’ photos again.


The ad was advocating that instead of having to search through the photos on your phone for a good one of your children to brag about, purchase a personalized cover for your phone featuring the best image of your children.

I think authors can use this great idea. Think about it. An author’s “baby” is his or her latest book. Why not create a phone cover featuring the cover image of your latest book? Turn your phone into a walking advertisement for you.

Personalized phone cases are not expensive. Vistaprint offers them for as low as $14. Others, like Redditgifts start at $25 and Zazzle and Skinit have cases starting around $35.

If you have made or do make a personalized phone cover with your book cover, I would love to see it. Leave me a comment with a link to the picture of your phone case!

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Call to Action

The majority of marketers (68%) agree that the best way to achieve their goals is through a clear call to action!

call to action

Good marketing always includes a call to action. Whether this is in an advertisement, in an email, on a website, on a social media site, guest articles, or anywhere you are marketing your books, a call to action urges the reader to act now.

Calls to action cannot be effective without both value and urgency. The offer must hold value for the reader and the call to action must imply that if the reader does not act now, the offer will go away. The more compelling the offer, the more effective the call to action will be.

Here are a few examples of good call to action wording:

  • Contact us today for a free report.
  • Learn how we can save you time and money.
  • Call us today and ask for our Web discount.
  • Subscribe now for more free tips.
  • Read the first chapter now.
  • Add to your cart now for a 10% discount.
  • Buy now and receive free shipping.

Remember to add a call to action to all your marketing materials. Using them can help you hook more buyers.

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