THE WRITER-AUTHOR-MARKETING SPECIALIST – Week II
“So, what is your campaign strategy?” This question struck me like a gust of cold wind as I spoke with an accomplished author I’d only met moments before. I’d been so excited about the release of my first book—in the same genre as his—that I had handed him a copy and was explaining about the design selection for the cover. So, when he responded to my breathless statements with that question I was left speechless. Immediately, he recognized my deer-in-the-headlights expression and politely suggested we continue our conversation after we’d ordered lunch.
Two other authors joined us that day. One was also a well-known author and workshop speaker at two of the writing conferences I’d attended. The other person had literally just started building a timeline/outline for her project. Below is my synopsis of the highlights of that discussion with specific focus on how the two experienced authors grew their marketing campaigns.
- Never waste a holiday opportunity. The marketing specialists who worked with both successful authors gave them a plan for each holiday season of the year that included “email shout-outs,” blog interviews and/or guest blog pieces, and more.
- Always encourage Readers AND other writers. This is a “sowing and reaping” quality to marketing that all PR professionals recognize. Without exception, encouraging words within any advertising piece will reap connection rewards which turn into book purchases.
- Widen your horizons. Most of the authors I know are introverts and really enjoy working alone in the quiet of their creative workspace. If we stay there, so will our books. The social media world will never know we/our books exist. Here is where the value of a professional PR/marketing person will make our author-dreams come true. They can introduce us and all our books to the world through Instagram, Twitter, Facebook, and blog-sites around the globe. They do the research—we reap the benefits.
- Think Visual. Just a few years ago the concept of “jingle advertising” was a major focus. By that I mean, ad placements that highlight a memorable phrase that sticks in the readers’ memory and nudges them to purchase what you’re selling. Although this is still utilized, “visual aids” is the piece that catches people’s attention these days. Matching your book/genre with the perfect illustration can make a huge difference in sales.
I will mention here, that one of the successful authors did most of this campaigning on his own—a little at a time—with occasional advice from his self-publishing company’s marketing specialist. He was happy with his slow, but steady, success. The second author also employed a marketing specialist from his self-publishing company; however, he kept connected with monthly emails and went full-speed ahead with the majority of ideas presented. He has seen great results!
Will there always be more to learn about marketing our books? Absolutely! As writers—who just want to write our books—must we become marketing specialists, too? Yes and no. There will come a moment when each of us will decide it’s the right time to partner with a professional PR person. The author who asked me that horrible question about “my campaign strategy” stated emphatically that he will never publish another book without the administrative help of his marketing specialist. He encouraged me to seek and find the person who can orchestrate my book marketing campaign(s). I hope you will, too. ⚓︎
ABOUT ROYALENE DOYLE: Royalene has been writing something since before kindergarten days and continues to love the process. Through her small business—DOYLE WRITING SERVICES—she brings more than 40 years of writing experience to authors who need “just a little assistance” with completing their projects. This is a nice fit as she develops these blogs for Outskirts Press (OP) a leading self-publisher, and occasionally accepts a ghostwriting project from one of their clients. Her recent book release (with OP) titled FIREPROOF PROVERBS, A Writer’s Study of Words, is already receiving excellent reviews including several professional writer’s endorsements given on the book’s back cover.
Royalene’s writing experience grew through a wide variety of positions from Office Manager and Administrative Assistant to Teacher of Literature and Advanced Writing courses and editor/writer for an International Christian ministry. Her willingness to listen to struggling authors, learn their goals and expectations and discern their writing voice has brought many manuscripts into the published books arena.