Dear Miss Guided:

Congratulations on your new book! I know that you put a lot of time and effort into both writing and publishing your book. You should be proud of what you have accomplished.
I am writing to beseech you to not throw away all the effort you have expended on bringing your book to fruition by neglecting to educate yourself on how to effectively promote and market your book.

shouting

Knowing how to promote your book effectively will bring in the sales that you seek. On the flip side, marketing your book poorly will not encourage people to buy your book.
No one likes a pushy salesman. Similarly, no one likes a pushy author. The truth is that few people apart from your close friends and family members even care that you wrote a book. So, don’t brag about it or push it on others.

I know that I may sound harsh, but please believe that I am not trying to hurt your feelings. Sometimes the truth is just painful. After all, Proverbs says, “Faithful are the wounds of a friend”. As an independently published author myself, I am trying to help you.
I urge you, do not walk around at social gatherings such as dinner parties, cocktail parties, Superbowl parties and tell people about your book and where to buy it. Effective authors have conversations with people. If someone brings up an issue that your book speaks to, you can then naturally mention your book and how it addresses the issue in the normal course of the conversation.

Similarly, do not post “buy my book” message on social media. This includes blog comments, Facebook users’ walls, and Tweets. Posting “buy my book” messages is a waste of your time. People consider these types of messages SPAM and delete them. Instead of garnering interest in your book, you are annoying people and closing a channel of communication. Effective authors offer something useful to the conversation. Your time is more wisely spent engaging in the conversation at hand. Then, if it is appropriate, you can mention your book.

I hope that you will take the time to read this letter that I have written to you. I am trying to help you, not harm you. I fear, however, that you are too busy shouting about your new book to take the time to read my words.

If you do happen to read this and want to learn how to effectively market your book, there are many resources available to you. If your book is Christian in nature, you can get many helpful tips and ideas in my book Your Guide to Marketing Books in the Christian Marketplace. If you have a general market book, you might want to check out Sell Your Book Like Wildfire or Smashwords Book Marketing Guide.

I truly wish you the best with your new book. May it bless many people.

Best Wishes,
Sarah Bolme
Director, Christian Small Publishers Association (CSPA)
Author, Your Guide to Marketing Books in the Christian Marketplace

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Tweets Get Wider Exposure

Earlier this year, Twitter struck a deal with Google to make its 140-character Tweets searchable via the Google search engine. At this time, Google is stating that Tweets will only appear in mobile searches, not desktop searches.

gootweet

This is good news for Twitter users, especially for users who are promoting products or services on Twitter. Potentially, if someone searches a key word in your Tweet, the Tweet could show up in Google’s search engine with the benefit of broadening your exposure. At least that is what the experts are saying will happen.

My experience so far has been a little different. What I have seen is that Tweets are not showing up in search results unless I specifically search a person’s name or handle they are using on Twitter, if I search using a hashtag, or if I include Tweet in my search words.
Recently when I searched my name “Sarah Bolme” in Google on my desktop computer, my Twitter account was the third result. When I searched the same thing on my Smart phone, the very first result was not only my Twitter account but it included my most recent Tweet. Interestingly, my Google+ account did not show up in either search.

While the concept of Tweets showing up in search engine results sounds good and may eventually garner some folks more exposure, in my personal use of Google search engine thus far, I have not yet seen this benefit being played out. In truth, I am seeing very few Tweets in mobile search engine results.

I am curious if you have had the same or a different experience.

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Social Media: What You Should Know

Social Media has become an integral part of life for most individuals. That means that if you want to reach readers, you need to be using social media to connect with your target audience.

Studies have found that Americans feel different about a brand that they can interact with via social media. In fact, 56% said that they feel a stronger connection with a company they interact with via social networks.

I invite you to watch the newest version of “Socialnomics” by Erik Qualman. This newest clip is filled with fascinating social media statistics you should be aware of.

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