Writing may be the love of your life, and you write your heart out, and you publish your own ebooks – but truly gaining a loyal audience is oftentimes the hardest part of publishing and selling your ebooks or books.
As a writer, marketing your work online can be daunting. There are thousands of websites and marketing channels to explore, but who has the time? You want to write…right? However, success doesn’t come without the pain of working to promote your self and your books.
Unfortunately, even if you hire a skilled publishing company or marketing firm, likely you’ll need to market your self and become an authority online and offline in order to gain a loyal customer base who will be itching and waiting for your next book to be published.
Studies in online marketing show that ‘authority’ is the key to getting traffic to a website, so if your book is published on a website, you’ll need to consider gaining authority not only for your self, but also for your website. One of the best ways to do this is to write online and cultivate a community around your writing. If you can impress thousands of online fans, they will buy your books. Period.
Here are some essential tips on building your community online:
- Set up a Google+ Profile and add the credentials to your blog. If you don’t already have a blog, get one. They are easy to set up and relatively inexpensive to build in WordPress even if you hire a local web design firm to do it for you. Add the G+ profile URL to your WordPress profile.
- Start writing online. 300 to 400 word articles and essays are great for getting recognition in your expertise or creative writing. Post excerpts from your books and ask for feedback. A great resource for content marketing is the Content Marketing Institute!
- Promote in social communities. After you write an article, always post it with a link to it on G+, your Facebook page, Twitter, Digg, Delicious, Tumblr, Squidoo and any other sites you can find that value good writing and web content.
- Build your communities. Once you start promoting, it’s not enough to just publish your work on all these websites. Reach out and follow other users in these networks, ask them for feedback on your excerpts or send them free copies of your books to get people commenting and talking about your work.
- Ask other authors and book review bloggers to link to your work. Even if you are afraid someone will not give you the best review, you should reach out to book review bloggers and other authors for feedback. If they like your work, they will give you a good review and link to your book website, download site, or your online articles. This boost your authority online for your self and your book sales website(s).
We know that getting recognition is tough for writers. After all, there are millions of books out there and even more authors crowding the information highway. Staying focused is the key to getting your communities built and getting repeat customers.
Managing your online presence and your reputation that comes along with it is just as important. Remember to always respond to negative comments in a positive way. Everyone has their own opinion and if you respect their opinion, they may give you another chance and buy your next book. As in any industry, motivation and drive are the keys to success with book marketing.
Don’t hesitate to reach out for help if you need it. As a book author, you want people to read your work and buy your books. Sometimes hiring an experienced book or ebook marketing company is necessary to prevent the ‘starving artist’ from starving.