Saturday, July 28, 2012

Marketing 101

After some hard work and dedication, you've finished a novel and managed to get it published.

From here on out it's up to the readers and your publishing house to get your book the fame it deserves, to drive up the sales. You, the writer, have done your duty, now you get to sit back and work on another and watch your baby climb the bestseller's list. You diligently check back to make certain your prize masterpiece is moving up the ranks as it should. What good parent doesn't?

Within weeks of your release, every one the dreams and plans you had come true. Your book is a top seller, people are clamoring for your next release, publishing houses are lined up to...

Yeah. Right.

You have your book published and now it's time for promotion.

It took months, even years, of labor to finish this novel. Months, even years, to get it published. You want to give it a proper send off into the world. You want everyone to know what you've accomplished.

We all know, or should, that promotion starts months ahead of the book's release.

You've taken those first important steps. You have a blog, a vlog, and a website. You're in the RWA, CWA, ACFW, (even the VFW)... too many writer's groups and book clubs to mention. You've connected with other writer's, enlisted influencers and reviewers, set up interviews and blog hops and library stops and contests where you plan to give away everything but the kitchen sink.

You've sent out press releases to your local paper, emailed your friends and family enough they cringe when they see an email from you. 

You've talked with book clubs about visiting with them. 

You've joined the Social Network on places like Twitter, Facebook, Linked In, Goodreads, and Pinterest to name a few. You have a brand, a trailer, a mailer.

You have done most everything you can think of to promote your book. And nothing is happening. There was a touch of a marketing whirlwind, a slight little tremor on the listings through the first month after your book's release, but that didn't translate into sales.

All your efforts seem as useful as a shiny new dime tossed in an invisible wishing well.

You barely made a dent in the market, but your energy and funds are waning, while your frustration mounts. Marketing and promotion are quickly becoming dirty words in your vocabulary.

You are matched up, Linked in and tapped out.

How do you get your book to the masses and keep your sanity in the process?

Over the next few days I will hosting the following authors and editors and publicists:

Dan Walsh
Nikki Arana
Tricia Goyer
Gail Delaney
Julie Lessman
Kristen Billerbeck
Jeff Gerke
Jennifer Hudson Taylor

To see how they market their books, what techniques they've found useful and what they've scrapped. Looking for new ideas and perhaps ways to streamline my own efforts. 

Would love for you to stop in and see what they have to say.


Hildie McQueen said...

Book signings are another thing I've done to promote my books locally. I've done everything on your list, but more than anything it's about exposure and getting your name out there. And yes it's a lot of work!!!

Tina Pinson said...

Hi Hildie,

thanks for stopping in.

I haven't quite figured out how to do a book signing for ebooks. I did some awhile back when I self published.
My goodness just today I figured out why no one was subscribing to my page. I had button with no real way to sign on behind it.

Go figure.

Kathleen Ball said...

Looking forward to reading your marketing 101- had to laugh because I have tried most of those things and I'm about tapped out

Leslie Basil Payne said...

I know this is all a part of the writers' life, so I'm hoping I'll look forward to it after reading your upcoming posts. Inspire me. Please! :0)

Tracy Krauss said...

You obviously were able to somehow read my mind... :)

Cathy Richmond said...

Marketing is a frequent topic on the RWA's Published Authors Network. They've concluded the best way to sell books is write another!

Tina Pinson said...

Hi, Kathleen,

I think everyone has tried most everything. Although I haven't tried outright paying people to like my books yet... Hmmm

Tina Pinson said...


I am hoping to be inspired as well. Some of what I've read in answer to my questions has been interesting.

Tina Pinson said...

Tracy, I have this whole sixth sense thing about me. I know what so many people are thinking and I don't even have to see them. Isn't that amazing?

Actually, it's probably more because my own marketing journey parallels yours and so many others.

Tina Pinson said...

I agree Cathy, I see marketing articles and blogs all the time. and I hear that you just keep writing books and getting them published and then for many lightning might strike.

I have three books out there and I guess I have put my name out there too great, cause several people still comment that I'm a new name to them. But I guess that's how it is.

Thanks for stopping in.

Julie Lessman said...

GREAT SERIES, Tina -- SO looking forward to it!!


Deborah Heal said...

Glad I found you. This topic is just what I need. I've been on the ride since Jan. 2011 when I got a contract for my first book. Then there was nearly a year of gestation while I learned all about promotions and did most all the stuff you mentioned. The book's been seven months and I'm exhausted with very little to show for it. Looking forward to hearing your guests!

Vannetta Chapman said...

I think one key is to keep trying different things. As fast as our market is changing, what worked w the last book might need tweeking or an entirely different approach w the next book.

Looking forward to the week's blog!


Naomi Musch said...

Well you've covered every hoop our brains have jumped through. Looking forward to the guest posts!

beckydoughty said...

I'm thrilled you're doing this series and with such great support, too. Looking forward to learning the ins and outs, what I'm doing right/wrong/not yet doing, etc.

Sign me up!


Tina Pinson said...

Thanks Julie,

I'm blessed that you and others have helped so willingly. and I'm learning quite a bit from what I've been reading.

Tina Pinson said...


you sound so much like I feel. Plugging away and wondering if you're getting any where.

Or the very least making a dent.

Take heart you're not alone.

I'm glad we're all getting some ideas.

Tina Pinson said...


I agree whole heartedly. I think we also have to realize that our marketing is just as different for each of us as our writing style.

Thank you so much for sharing.


Tina Pinson said...


You have hoops in your head. LOL

I so understand. I think I got tripped up on a few of them hoops too.

Tina Pinson said...

Hello, Becky,

I have gotten a bit of support and for that I'm deeply appreciative.

Ya gotta have friends sometimes. and it's great that some those are happy to share from their own journey.

Ann Lee Miller said...


I'm really enjoying this series. Very helpful! Thanks!