Marketing/promoting is the downside of writing/publishing your book, but it’s an evil that has to be dealt with. Coffee-Drunk Or Blind was published in December and I thought I would have a reprieve from the publishing world until the scraps of the next WIP were on the cutting room floor. What was I thinking?
I use the word evil lightly. Where’s my downtime? I’ll tell you. There is no downtime after self-publishing a book. You wrote. You edited. You re-wrote and edited some more. Then you carefully placed it all in a template while wrestling with headers and footers, designed an incredible book cover, submitted, waited on a proof copy, and edited some more. More wait time on proofs and finally, the project was to your liking and you hit the publish button. But no, no, no. That wasn’t the end.
Now there’s all that promoting and marketing that has to be done by you and only you. You can’t depend on your readers or followers to automatically hit the share button on your Author Facebook page or to remember to write that promised review on Amazon. Not even the ones you sent a free copy to are always capable or willing of adding their thoughts – good or bad – to your review list.
All the groveling an author has to go through to get their book out to the public or get the reviews posted on Amazon takes a toll on the ego. If readers would only realize how important it is to the popularity of your book, because Amazon does go a bit farther with their suggestions when a certain quota of reviews are hit. When I saw Coffee-Drunk Or Blind listed under “Customers Who Viewed This Item Also Viewed” under my first book, Crossing The Line, and vice versa, I was elated.
Now this picture doesn’t mean authors would like bad reviews, but we do want honesty.
I’ve been doing a lot of posting on Twitter (@knowleselle) since the publishing of CDB. I’ll be honest and tell you I didn’t – and still don’t – understand the concept, but it’s getting better. What I couldn’t understand was the fact that my small following would sometimes increase greatly in numbers during the course of the day once I tweeted – that’s the right word isn’t it? – something worthwhile, and then would drop off consistently by a few in the middle of the night. Now if someone has the time to investigate whether I followed back or they just followed me so I would follow them back, to get their numbers up, and then drop me like a hot potato, they have more time on their hands than I do and aren’t worth the trouble. (My thoughts on that.)
As on all social media there is a limit to what you should and shouldn’t do to promote your publication. Of course, the first couple of weeks after you have published, you put it out there every day. Yes, we are all guilty of that one – but it’s just so darn impressive when you see your words in print and you just have no control over your groveling actions. Buy my book! Review my book! Look at me! Read this! Your finger hits that post button with a new picture or beg-for-a-buy daily. You post your reviews and your sales and your sales rank for all to see. Really, the public is happy for you, but enough is enough.
So you slow down and somehow your followers stay following and all is well in your author world except your sales have fallen off. You have to sell, but to sell, you have to promote. Then again, they all say – don’t promote too much. What is too much? What is too little? I’m still trying to find that happy medium. You can’t just stop posting altogether, but what do you post if it’s not your book? That’s another dilemma worth investigating. It takes time though and I know one day I’m going to hit on the perfect post content that everyone is interested in interacting with on Facebook, Twitter, WordPress, etc… And then I’ll just throw in a couple Buy My Book! posts for good measure.
So now you see where my time is going everyday. I do have another WIP on the writing table though, so the circle continues, and I’ll just keep on going like the energizer bunny. And BTW…grovel, grovel…
You can find Coffee-Drunk Or Blind on Amazon here
and Crossing The Line on Amazon here.
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