A unique blog dedicated to covering the worlds of book publishing and the news media, revealing creative ideas, practical strategies, interesting stories, and provocative opinions. Along the way, discover savvy but entertaining insights on book marketing, public relations, branding, and advertising from a veteran of two decades in the industry of book publishing publicity and marketing.
authors want to sell lots of books, get media attention, win awards, hit a
best-seller list, and impact society with their books. Lots of writers will
employ a social media strategy that contributes to marketing their books and
promoting their brand. Can any author achieve a significant milestone, such as snagging
one million page views for a website or blog?
answer is most definitely yes, but the bigger question is: How long will it
five years of launching my blog, www.bookmarketingbuzzblog.blogspot.com, I reached
1,000,000 page views. The blog, now six-and-a-half years old, features nearly
2,600 posts and will surpass 1.5 million page views this spring. For some, they
would love to average my traffic of 25,000 page views per month. For others,
it’s too little and too slow. They want to blow the Internet up. Today. Now!
your first decision is about pace and how fast you hope to generate lots of web
traffic. Will you invest time and resources that are needed to speed this
process up? Will you hire marketers and publicists to help? Will you find a
part-time helper, perhaps a smart and eager college student, who can assist in
researching, commenting, and posting? You need to be realistic about your time.
confront your technological IQ. Are you digitally savvy enough to post
regularly online and to share content on key platforms, such as Twitter,
Facebook, YouTube, LinkedIn, Google +, Instagram and Pinterest?
can you produce enough content on a regular basis that’s truly interesting,
unique, and moving? Are you really a good writer, creative and talented?
Mediocrity won’t cut it here.
are you personality-driven in some of your posts? The Internet loves bluster,
humor, emotion, and forceful claims. Be bold in your posts.
decide if you really want to hit a lofty goal like 1M page views, or if your
bigger goal is to accomplish something else. Getting lots of clicks shouldn’t
be a goal in itself. It’s a means to achieving some greater purpose and you may
have better, alternative methods to get to where you want to be. Is a
digital-centric strategy your best -- or only -- way to get there?
you will have to post often, regularly, and on many platforms to have a chance
of increasing your clicks. You will also need content that has viral potential
-- something so outrageous, shocking, or visually arresting that people feel
compelled to share it. Filter your efforts through the prism of, “Would I want
to share this if someone sent it to me?” If not, don’t waste your time. Find
the post that will amaze others.
to achieve success at anything, you need to learn from others -- attend
seminars, participate in webinars, scour the Net, and read books on anything
regarding Internet marketing.
model others who have broken through. If someone has generated a lot of
views-clicks-connections look at what they did, break it down into steps that
can be replicated even at a fraction of their results, and look to be a
mini-version of them.
connect with and follow people who have tons of connections and big followings.
You can pay them to sponsor content. You can befriend them and hope they
recognize your talented voice. You can incentivize them with some type of a reward
in exchange of a favor, such as having them post your link on their social
media. Be gutsy and creative. Take a risk. Offer something that stretches you.
Maybe you need to bring a third or fourth party in and make a big trade. You
give A something from B; B gets something from you and A gives you what you
use Google Ads to advertise yourself and build up link clicks.
give something away of perceived value. The more giveaways of a greater value,
the quicker your clicks go up.
one way to get to a million page views is to give people a reason to check in
daily-or multiple times a day. The more frequently you update your content, the
more often one may go back to see what’s new.
getting traditional media coverage will likely get you more page views. Go out
of your way to mention your website. Same with speaking engagements. The more
appearances you do to bigger crowds, and where you offer a reason for them to
go to the website, the more likely you’ll reach a million page views.
consider getting guest-content from people who provide interesting content that
you can share with people who are more likely to share as well. Further, the
guest provider will likely share on social media and guide people to your site.
have everything pass through your site. Your blog, podcast, video, giveaways,
and special offers should be available through one place -- your website. Don’t
distract people to go anywhere else but to one place.
you can also post the offers of others on your site. For instance, let’s say
Starbucks is offering an online coupon for a free drink. You can then create a
short post on your blog or site about this deal. You then send out a link to
your site’s story (which contains a link to the coupon). Now people will go to
your site and get something of value.
collaborate with others, where you each agree to post about one another and
share each other’s content. Such a friendly exchange is great for getting
exposure to others you may otherwise have never been discovered by.
increase your clicks with paper. That’s right, you heard me. Hand out flyers
and cards to promote your site with a reason to click, handed to those who
would welcome your message. You may have to pay to sponsor an event, but if the
crowd is big and targeted, it’s worth it.
beg your friends, family, colleagues, and frenemies to click on your site and
to share the link with their following. Ask them for direct introductions to
those they know have a lot of followers. Seek to impress them.
at number 20, know that to get a million or more page views in a short time
takes not just talent, skill, style, friends, money, and time. It takes luck.
Many people get lucky breaks and they don’t know why or how they happened. Be
active and assertive and you may get lucky too.
Marketing Lessons From My All-Time Top 10 Blog Posts
recently met a potential author who seemingly has a lot going for him – great
credentials, a timely subject, something useful to offer, and connections to
A-list stars. He asked me what I though authors need to do to be successful and thought it seems like he should be in a
positon to execute a strong PR campaign and sell tons of books. I realized that
by him asking the question he may not know what it really takes to succeed with
a book. He’s not alone.
authors make a detailed plan-on marketing and publicity. Ordinary authors don’t plan ahead in a
targeted and meaningful way.
authors will not sabotage themselves.
They will take advantage of the long lead time before a book is
officially released. There are many
things one must do many months in advance of a book’s publication date. For instance, one has to send out advance
reviews for testimonials six months prior to publication so that they come back
soon enough to use on the cover or website or marketing materials. For book reviews, some publications work 4-5
months ahead, so if you hope to get coverage in a monthly woman’s magazine or a
book review in Publishers Weekly,
reach out way ahead of the day books go on sale. Ordinary authors miss key deadlines.
authors invest resources – time and money – to promoting and marketing their books.
Ordinary authors don’t invest enough in their books.
authors stay informed about book publicity and marketing, way in advance of pub
date, and all through the first 3-4 months after their book is published.
authors pen a promotable book. Ordinary
authors merely seek to promote the book they wrote – without researching the
authors make sure they blog at least weekly and post daily on Twitter,
Facebook, Instagram or whichever social media platform they use to get their
message out. Ordinary authors post
without consistency and don’t devote the proper attention to the one resource
that’s free and available 24-7.
authors diversify their approach to marketing and promoting a book –
traditional media, social media, speaking engagements, advertising – while
ordinary authors tend to narrowly focus on one or two areas.
Great authors work hard at building up large lists of connections and followers way
ahead of pub date whereas ordinary authors start to consider networking once
they have a book in hand.
authors seek to brand themselves as experts, not just writers. They may promote a series vs. a one-off
title. They remain ever-vigilant to
market their name, views, or book.
Ordinary authors see themselves first as authors, experts second. They miss opportunities to speak out and
promote their voice.
authors execute the details and follow-up on ideas, leads, or
introductions. Ordinary authors lack a
sense of urgency or opportunism. They
react, rather than initiate.
authors are scrappy, street-savvy, and always hustling. Ordinary authors are not always looking to
cut a deal, insert themselves into a conversation, or pick up on hints that
they can turn a chance moment into a major opportunity.
authors know that books sell or get media coverage because of style,
personality, or timing – and not simply because a book is well-written,
properly researched, and full of good content.
Ordinary authors think their words alone will make a book a hit, unaware
of or unwilling to make a splashy effort to publicize their book.
authors are decent writers who are great at marketing. Ordinary authors are inconsistent marketers
who may be great at writing. Are you a great author or an ordinary one?
The All new 2018
toolkit to promote a book -- 7th annual edition
Who’s (Oops) Whose Grammar Book Is This
Anyway? All the Grammar You Need to
Succeed in Life
by C. Edward Good is one of those books on grammar that could replace most
others on the subject. Yes, it’s that
does a great job of outlining our language, including common grammatical
mistakes, the eight big parts of speech and the 11 elements of punctuation. We
may know when a period is needed but not always the comma. We often confuse the semicolon with the colon
and what’s the difference between a dash and a hyphen? Not sure? Just know where to stick an apostrophe, quotation marks,
and your parentheses.
appreciate the book's breakdown on the key parts of speech:
that do or are.
3.Adjectives: Words that describe.
words substituting for words.
More words that describe.
– Words that join.
– Words that glue.
– Words that exclaim
are some random but insightful thoughts excerpted from Good’s book:
learning the grammar of the language – its structure – the way it fits together
– you’ll begin to see the words, phrases, and clauses you habitually use and
those you tend to avoid.
school board somewhere right now is concluding that we don’t need to devote
much class time to grammar. After all,
grammar is just elitist worry about out-of-date rules or just a fretting about
manners. Will that school board’s
decision help further erode the knowledge of grammar in this nation?
day this nation will wake up, realize the harm we’ve done, and begin to insist
that we get back to basics. A thorough
study of grammar should head the list.
do matter. Words do carry meaning. And grammatical rules do govern the way we
put our words down on paper so that we can transfer knowledge to future
generations. If we have no rules, then
words and groups of words can mean whatever we want.
just maybe, the erosion of grammar has a lot to do with the widely acknowledged
erosion of communication skills in the United States. Perhaps the erosion of grammar would help
explain why the professor’s students use like
after every third word.
hope you agree that good writing comes directly from a broad and deep knowledge
of the structures our language makes available to us. If we do not study them, if we do not learn
all about them, if we do not practice using them in our discourse, then the
future for our own ability to communicate is bleak indeed.
of us will continue to cry out that grammar and style are inextricably bound up
together. We believe deeply that we
cannot learn to write well without knowing grammar – not just the basics but
some fairly sophisticated concepts undergirding our language.
I hope, you’ve learned in this book.
matter. The way they come together to
convey meaning is governed by a set of rules.
That set of rules is called grammar.
Either you know it, or you don’t.”
The All new 2018 toolkit to promote a book -- 7th annual
1.What really inspired you to write your
book, to force you from taking an idea or experience and conveying it into a
book? After personally
experiencing identity theft more than once, my anger at the perpetrators moved
me to do something to help others understand the present danger. I wanted to
inform and alert readers, so I researched extensively before creating CARD GAMES
from an entertaining angle.
2.What is it about and whom do you believe
is your targeted reader? I
chose to write a novel so that the details, although based totally on research
and hard data, would seem interesting and even suspenseful to read. The book is
about a guy whose life is turned upside down by identity theft and how he, a
credit card company, and professional crime fighters work internationally to
find the bad guys. My targeted readers could be everyone but children.
3.What do you hope will be the everlasting thoughts
for readers who finish your book? What should remain with them long after
putting it down? It would be
my hope that readers will enjoy the read and remember various lessons within it
that they can use to keep their own identities safe from predators. They will
be wiser and safer and potentially a good influence on other people once they
know that they are their own protectors in life.
4.What advice or words of wisdom do you
have for fellow writers? Choose
to write about something – anything – that intrigues you. As you explore,
you’ll become more inclined to stay on the path to learn for yourself how
interesting your topic and the evolution of your writing will be.
trends in the book world do you see and where do you think the book publishing
industry is heading? Clearly,
reading is taking on many formats and the creativity of writers is endless.
With so much to read and enjoy, learn and share, the industry provides endless
resources to take your reading ability wherever you go. The future of book publishing is huge and
maybe – an unwritten book!
6.What great challenges did you have in
writing your book? Not long
into the process of writing, and enjoying tremendous encouragement to write my
book, I experienced a traumatic personal tragedy. The book had to be set aside
for a considerable period of time, and my energy and enthusiasm to get back to
writing lagged. Then, with identity theft on the exponential rise, I knew I had
an important topic, but wondered if I had lost my window to share it.
7.If people can only buy one book this
month, why should it be yours? The
topic of identity theft becomes a more omnipresent threat every day. People
should buy my book for the enjoyment of a suspenseful read and to increase
their awareness and personal “identification” with this challenge, as well as
how to work with legal resources to stop the thieves.
All-New 2018 Toolkit to Promote a Book -- 7th annual edition