Posts Tagged ‘promotion’

Breaking into the Library

Posted: April 14, 2012 in Marketing
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Libraries may seem like dinosaurs to some in this digital age. But it’s a great way to get your book read and isn’t it the dream of most authors so see their book on those hallowed shelves?

For small press and independent authors, however, you have to be willing to exercise some muscle to accomplish this. One simple way that might help is to request your book from the library and have your friends and family do the same.  If there are enough requests asking to borrow a particular title, the library might be willing to invest in a copy or two.

Here are excerpts and links to articles that talk about two other suggestions for ways to break into the library scene.

Get a Library of Congress Control Number. For instance, Wordclay offers this service. Otherwise, apply directly for an Pre-Assigned Control Number.

The CIP program is more complicated: “Only U. S. publishers who publish titles that are most likely to be widely acquired by U.S. libraries” – i.e. traditionally published books, though self-publishers are certainly eligible. The difference between the programs is a full listing with author name/subject or just a control number. The Library of Congress will catalog how your book is listed. Otherwise you can draft your own and label it a Publisher Cataloging-in-Publication, as opposed to Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication. Hiring a catologing company may be necessary to produce an accurate listing. The advantage to a more extensive listing is a greater likelihood that it will be bought by libraries.

via How to Get a Self-Published Book into Libraries | Self-Publishing Review.

One of the best ways to get in front of librarians is to submit your book to be reviewed by one of several publications that librarians turn to for recommendations. You aren’t promised a favorable review. But if you get one, you can use it in your marketing materials, excerpt a blurb for your book jacket, or include it on your website.

via How to get your book reviews in front of librarians.

Gene Twaronite posted a link to the interview below on a Linked In group I belong to.  The “person” being interviewed is actually the main character of Gene’s novel, John Boggle.  The idea of interviewing a character instead of the author wasn’t new to me, my character Jo Sullivan actually did an interview today on Laurie’s Thoughts and Reviews.

Gene, however, has taken the idea a step further in an interesting way.  John Boggle has actually highjacked Gene’s Twitter account, too.  From the sound of it, other authors’ characters have been doing this as well, turning up on social media network sites as themselves and not letting their authors get a word in edgewise.

I like this idea.  It sounds like fun, as long as Jo lets me be the one to write the sequel to her story.  To find out what Gene and John Boggle are up to, follow him on Twitter:  John Boggle@gtwaronite

Since this second novel has come out, I feel more alive now than ever before. In a sense I’ve been born again. Since most of you reading this are probably not characters, it’s hard for me to explain. Each time an author writes a sequel about a character, that literary person becomes a little more real. My author tries to hog all the glory for creating a believable character and never gives me credit for all the work at my end. But as the saying goes, it takes two to tango. He claims that it was his brain that first came up with me. But I am the idea itself—just waiting for him or someone else to seize upon my potential. Without me he’s a nothing but a writer without a story.

via I Am A Reader, Not A Writer: Character Interview & Book Giveaway: My Vacation in Hell by Gene Twaronite.

There are almost as many people creating companies that offer resources to writers as there are writers jumping into the self publishing frenzy.  There are a lot of hungry fish out there and everyone seems to be chasing those dollar-sign shaped fish hooks.

There’s nothing wrong with that, but you have to be careful to pick a company that can be counted on to deliver some bang for your bucks.  Personally, I have no intention of paying anyone to either publish my writing or to promote it.  I don’t even enter contests if they have an entry fee.

There are lots of these companies, however, that offer free advice or tools that I am perfectly willing to take advantage of and pass on here.  I found the site below when doing some research on freelance rates that has several free offerings you might want to check out.  I’m sure they are hoping you will like their generosity enough to inquire into their paid services, but please know that I am not advocating for them.  If you are interested in what they have to offer, go for it.  Or just take the freebies and go on your way.  Your choice.

We hope you find these FREE writing resources useful for the writing you do. Check back with us often to see what other writing freebies we’ve come up with lately.

via Writing Freebies | No 2 Pen Writing and Communications.

This looks like a great site to bookmark if you are a self published author.  The article linked below on how to use categories to call attention to your book is only one of the good pieces of advice I found.

The “category path” is how Amazon determines the rankings. The main ranking that we are used to seeing is the “Paid in Kindle Store.” This ranking includes everything from newspapers to games and even Kindle accessories. You can see how important it is to categorize optimally.

via Helping you become a #1 Bestselling Author | Indies Unlimited.

I’m reinstating Twitter Tuesdays–here’s the first installment for your edutainment.

A few weeks ago Chris Brogan published a list of the 100 blog topics that he wished people would cover. One of them was, “How Twitter Improved My Blog,” and I accepted the challenge to write something along these lines. (For those of you who are unfamiliar with Twitter, you can read “The Tao of Twitter,” “Newbies Guide to Twitter,” or “Ode to Twitter.”) Here is my answer to Chris’s request.

Book Marketing Group News | LinkedIn.

A Facebook friend posted a link to the article below with the remark that writers could learn a few tricks from the marketing strategy used by the producers of the movie The Hunger GamesEspecially if you’re working on a shoestring budget.  I think he might have a point.  Read below and if you click on the link to the whole article, go to page two to see some specific examples of how they used social media to their advantage.

While some studios have halted once-standard marketing steps like newspaper ads, Lionsgate used all the usual old-media tricks — giving away 80,000 posters, securing almost 50 magazine cover stories, advertising on 3,000 billboards and bus shelters.

But the campaign’s centerpiece has been a phased, yearlong digital effort built around the content platforms cherished by young audiences: near-constant use of Facebook and Twitter, a YouTube channel, a Tumblr blog, iPhone games and live Yahoo streaming from the premiere.

By carefully lighting online kindling (releasing a fiery logo to movie blogs) and controlling the Internet burn over the course of months (a Facebook contest here, a Twitter scavenger hunt there), Lionsgate’s chief marketing officer, Tim Palen, appears to have created a box office inferno.

via How ‘Hunger Games’ Built Up Must-See Fever – NYTimes.com.

As if I don’t have enough excuses to keep me from working on the second Jo Sullivan novel, I’ve decided to sign up with the web community below and see what they’re all about.  Want to check them out?

iHubbub is a social community for remote, virtual, freelance and home workers as well as business start-ups, sharing perspectives and lifestyle choices. It is the place for the home working world to hang out!

1. The destination of choice for relevant information for home workers, business start-ups, and work life blend.

2. The most comprehensive Market Square for remote working jobs as well as basic services from within our community.

3. iHubbub is social networking for flexible home workers, freelance consultants, home and remote workers – an exciting new social networking site for the new world of work.

4. To create a Cosmopolitan Directory of home businesses, virtual companies, freelance consultants and remote or mobile workers and home workers across the globe who support each others challenges, share skills and experience and celebrate new opportunities.

via About iHubbub | iHubbub, The Home Business Network.

Eat Your Words

Posted: November 15, 2011 in Marketing, Self Publishing, Small Presses
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Small presses and self published authors have come up with many interesting and unique ideas to promote their books.  But here’s an article about a larger press taking a new approach that everyone could probably use, though on a smaller scale.

Random House is partnering with others to sell tickets to events that include a free copy of the author’s book.  You can read the article below for specific details of what they plan, but to put it in a smaller perspective, let’s think of a way it might work for you.

Is there a restaurant in your area that has a reputation for great food?  This could be anything from a famous greasy spoon to gourmet, award winning fine dining.  If there is a way to forge a connection between what they do and what your book is about, even better.  If, for instance, your story takes place in Paris, how about approaching someone well known for their french cuisine?

Now, pitch the idea of their hosting a special event, possibly on a night when their business is slow.  They could offer special prices on some of their signature dishes.  You could offer copies of your book to give to each party that makes a reservation.

You might even be able to throw in an author signing.  You could sit at a table near the entrance and sign books as people left with a full, happy belly.  Bring a few books along in case someone wants to buy an extra copy.  Advertisement for the event could be shared between yourself and the restaurant, and benefit both.

Then again, why stop at restaurants?  What other venues can you think of that might be open to this type of event that could be good business for you as well as them.  Be creative.  Isn’t that, after all, what writers do best?

Random House of Canada is experimenting with a different kind of book tour this fall–one that guarantees book sales from every person attending a launch. Working with strategic marketing partners such as Fairmont Hotels and Air Miles, the company is creating ticketed events that include a copy of the book in the price.

via Random House of Canada Tests New Book Tour Model.

SEO Test Post

Posted: October 24, 2011 in Marketing
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This is a test, this is only an SEO Test

So you are my lab rats and I am the mad scientist.  I have tried to write this post in a search engine optimized way, using the keywords “SEO” and “keyword” as often as I could without being ridiculous.  By reading this post–actually, just by getting to this page–no reading necessary at all–you are helping me determine if I was able to maximize the hits I get to this article.

For some time now, I’ve been meaning to do more research on SEO (Search Engine Optimization) writing–what that means, and how it brings more traffic to your article or blog.  I understood the basic concept of SEO:  use the keywords and links in your post to make it more likely to show up in the top results of an internet search.

SEO Writing – Simple or Not Simple

SEO writing sounded like it might be pretty simple.  The basic concept of SEO writing is to mention the same keywords multiple times in the article.  The trickiest part of that would be deciding which keywords to use.  Just think of what words you might use if you were trying to find information on the subject you’re writing about.  Creating an article that deliberately uses the keyword “the” over and over again isn’t likely to get you anywhere.  Because, come on now, how many people do you think use Google to search for “the.”  Duh.

If picking the right keywords were all there was to it, however, I should be able to just write SEO, SEO, SEO, SEO, SEO, over and over ad nauseum.  Using this thinking, writing an article that only contains the keyword SEO should make it the first link shown if someone did a Google search for SEO.  Right?  But no, apparently it’s not the number of times the keyword is used, but by combining it with related keywords.

In Part 1 of  How To Write an SEO Article on Daily Writing Tips, I read not to start by writing an SEO ARTICLE.  First, just write a plain old (well, not plain or old, really, don’t forget to make it interesting) ARTICLE.  You then incorporate those keywords as you write, if and only if, it makes sense to do so.

Editing SEO Articles

Part 2 of How to Write an SEO Article mentions that when editing, you should use your keywords in the headline or any subheads, then sprinkle them in as many places as you can.  The article also talks about using hyperlinks in the text of your article, and using two keywords close to each other also to boost keyword visibility.  In his example he uses the keyword phrases “concert tickets” and “Britney Spears,” with a hyperlink on Britney Spears.  In the first line of this paragraph, I did the same thing with SEO and keyword, adding a hyperlink to SEO.

Next, however, is where the above articles failed me.  They make reference to how search engines use meta data from html code to optimize the search engine, and even shows the html header info from an article.  But it doesn’t explain what if anything, you can do to get that meta data to say what you want it to.  More research is needed, I think, but I hope this at least has been helpful.  I know it was for me.

More and more there are articles and blogs and posts being written pointing to social media as an important tool to marketing yourself and your book.  Enough to be convincing, I think, that it must be true.

The article linked below gives you a detailed explanation of 31 ways to increase the popularity of your Facebook Page.

1 – Put your Facebook page URL in your email signature.

2 – Write a blog post about your new Facebook page.

3 – Tag other people’s high-traffic Facebook pages in your updates.

4 – Ask your Twitter followers to like your Facebook page.

5 – Invest in Facebook ads.

6 – Put a Facebook social plugin on your blog or website.

7 – Implement Facebook comments on your website or blog.

8 – Customize your Facebook page URL.

9 – Put your Facebook page URL on your business cards.

10 – Put a link on your personal Facebook profile.

11 – Get your team involved.

12 – Ask your fans to post a link.

13 – Tag your YouTube videos.

14 – Put your Facebook page URL on your Twitter profile background.

15 – Create a QR code for your Facebook page.

16 – Tell your fans.

17 – Add a Facebook Like box.

18 – Use targeted keywords in a Google AdWords ad.

19 – Redirect webinar guests to your Facebook page.

20 – Feature your Facebook page in your presentation slides.

21 – Run a contest.

22. Connect your Facebook page to your Twitter profile.

23. Encourage your contacts to ask questions on your Facebook wall.

24. Put your Facebook page URL on other social media pages.

25. Feature your Facebook page in offline ads.

26. Rely on word of mouth and word of mouse.

27. Invite your ezine subscribers.

28. Get Fans to join via mobile SMS.

29. Comment on other people’s Facebook posts.

30. Do a blog tour promoting your Facebook page.

31. Invite your friends.

If you want your Facebook fan page to be effective and stand out, you have to get people to find and like your page. Here are a few ways to do that (inspired by a recent post by Justin Wise on Social Media Examiner).

A prominent Facebook page can be crucial to your book marketing and book promotion campaigns.

via 31 Ways to Promote Your Facebook Page | Ask John Kremer.