Use GIFS to Ignite Your Book Marketing

via GIPHY

GIFS are all the rage. You see them on Twitter, Facebook, email newsletters, and virtually wherever you turn your attention to on the internet.

Experts will tell you that the only way to stop your followers from scanning a Twitter newsfeed is with a GIF.

Actually, GIFs are so eye-catching that wherever you use them, people will stop, smile, and replay the GIF a second or third time – at least.

You can also use GIFs for book marketing. You just need a sense of humor and a dash of ingenuity.

Take a series of pictures while reading from your newest book or have someone take pictures of you while you write or type at your desk. Any of these examples can be used to market yourself and your books and add some levity along the way.

Let’s get down to how to create a GIF. You can snap the pictures – or have someone snap them for you – or search for a GIF and use it instead. Or you can have someone take a series of shots as you read through a book, making it appear that you are quite the speed reader.

Did you know that you can use Canva.com to create a GIF? Just create a series of images, upload them to an app, then grab the URL and use it on social media or in your MailChimp newsletter.

Using my dog as an example, I took a series of pictures of her, uploaded them to the application Giphy, added a tag, and voila, here’s my GIF.

via GIPHY

You can also add GIFs to your MailChimp newsletter. Use the search bar at Giphy to find a GIF and copy the URL.

Then when you’re on MailChimp, click the image icon.

Then paste the URL from Giphy.

Voila, you have a GIF for your newsletter.

via GIPHY

Why Authors Need to Use GIFs

According to HootSuite, here are a few reasons why you should start using GIFs:

  • GIFs show that you’re paying attention to internet trends
  • GIFs show that you and your brand has a fun side
  • GIFs can add more context to a shorter message, post, or Tweet
  • GIFs get your message across in a shorter amount of time
  • GIFs are easily shareable
  • GIFs convey emotions better than text or photos alone

GIF Applications

There are two main applications you can use to find GIFs.

  1. Giphy
  2. Bin

Use these applications to create GIFs.

When using Giphy, you have the options to copy the link to add to MailChimp, download the GIF for uploading to social media, embed the GIF in a blog post (as I did in this post), and to share the GIF directly from Giphy to a variety of social media platforms including Facebook, Twitter, and Instagram.

Learn to Make Your Own GIFs

How do you plan to use GIFs in your book marketing?


Want to save time with social media? Get Avoid Social Media Time Suck for FREE.

Social Media Time Suck

 

Frances CaballoAuthor of this blogFrances Caballo is an author and social media strategist and manager for writers. She’s a regular speaker at the San Francisco Writers Conference. In addition, she’s a contributing writer at TheBookDesigner.com, and blogger and Social Media Expert for BookWorks. She’s written several social media books including the 2nd edition of Social Media Just for Writers and The Author’s Guide to Goodreads. Her focus is on helping authors surmount the barriers that keep them from flourishing online, building their platform, finding new readers, and selling more books. Her clients include authors of every genre and writers’ conferences. Not sure how you’re doing online? Sign up for my free email course.

Practical tips for marketing your books on the social web

Penny is Coming!

Join the next Conversations with Frances when Penny Sansevieri, aka @Bookgal, comes on the show to talk about how to sell more books. Every indie author will want to attend this free webinar. Register now!

Indie Author Weekly Update – December 8, 2017

Indie Author Weekly Update

This week’s Indie Author Update includes posts on blogging, book promotion, Facebook, and a new Kindle feature. I hope you enjoy the selection.

Easy Blogging for Authors: 10 Tips for a Successful Author Blog by Anne R. Allen: “I’ve made some spectacular blunders in my blogging career. But since we learn from our mistakes, I’ve got a boatload of information now. As Ruth and I say: “We made the mistakes so you don’t have to.” The worst decision I made was trying to turn this blog into a monetized business blog. That lasted about six months— until my doctor said I was going to have to choose between blogging and living to see my next birthday. This is the second anniversary of the beginning of that failed experiment, and I’ve been thinking over what I’ve learned.”

3 Shameless Book Promotion Tips For Your Next Release from The Write Life: “Nothing makes a reader feel like an A-class insider like being treated to A-class gifts. Many authors create incredible extras inspired by their writing, drawn from their characters or worlds. This can be anything from a map of an alternate world to lovely character cards, or a peek behind the curtain at your creative process.”

How To Get More Facebook Likes: The Beginner’s Guide from Blogging Wizard: “2 billion. Yes, billion, with a B. In June of 2017, that is how many active users Facebook exceeded according to Statista. That amount is staggering, and the awe tends to compound when you hear that over 65% percent of that amount use Facebook daily. Wouldn’t you like a slice of over 2 billion users?”

Indie Author Content Ideas for Your December Book Marketing from Penny Sansevieri: “Yes, many of us just want to tuck away in our jammies with a mug of eggnog and rum but book marketing never ends! And remember, it’s crucial you stay in front of your fans and potential buyers, and I know that can be exhausting, so I’m trying to help you out by giving you monthly content ideas based around fun, unofficial and official holidays.”

Kindle Create App Out of Beta by Nate Hoffelder: “Amazon’s app for making Kindle ebooks, Kindle Create, is out of beta. Originally launched in April, Kindle Create is Amazon’s 4th Kindle ebook making app (the other three are  Kindle Kids Book Creator, Kindle Textbook Creator, and Kindle Comics Creator).”

11 Creative Ways to Boost Reader Engagement from BookBub: “Having loyal readers can make it easier for an author to sell subsequent books. While reader loyalty is primarily fostered from love of a book, it can also be cultivated through online engagement. Getting readers to engage online takes time and effort, which may not yield immediate revenue, and the ROI of these efforts can be difficult to measure. However, there can be significant long-term gains from having loyal fans who are willing to preorder, review, and enthusiastically tell their friends about a book.”

Quote of the Week

Graham Greene

Frances CaballoAuthor of this blogFrances Caballo is an author and social media strategist and manager for writers. She’s a regular speaker at the San Francisco Writers Conference. In addition, she’s a contributing writer at TheBookDesigner.com, and blogger and Social Media Expert for BookWorks. She’s written several social media books including the 2nd edition of Social Media Just for Writers and The Author’s Guide to Goodreads. Her focus is on helping authors surmount the barriers that keep them from flourishing online, building their platform, finding new readers, and selling more books. Her clients include authors of every genre and writers’ conferences. Not sure how you’re doing online? Sign up for my free email course.

Practical tips for marketing your books on the social web

Penny is Coming!

Join the next Conversations with Frances when Penny Sansevieri, aka @Bookgal, comes on the show to talk about how to sell more books. Every indie author will want to attend this free webinar. Register now!

 Penny Sansevieri

 

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8 Tools for Writers Who Use Pinterest

8 Tools Just for Writers Who Use PinterestDid you recently publish a book? And have you started a blog?

Congratulate yourself if you answered yes to those questions.

Now, here’s my follow-up question: Have you started using Pinterest yet?

According to Alexa, Facebook is the third most trafficked website (following Google in first place and YouTube in second place), and it can be grand for nurturing relationships. But as writers, especially if you write romance, women’s fiction, or family saga, you can’t afford to ignore the power of Pinterest.

Pinterest is so good at sending traffic to blogs and book sales pages that we can no longer afford to think of this social media platform as a “woman’s” platform. (I mean, have you seen the pictures of muscle cars there not to mention men’s workout clothes?)

Statistics Prove the Effectiveness of Marketing with Pinterest

Check out these statistics for how well Pinterest can drive traffic to your blog (or any other landing page):

  • A pin is 100 times more spreadable than your average tweet, according to Kissmetrics.
  • Per Search Engine Watch, Pinterest pins deliver two site visits and six page views on average, plus more than ten re-pins – and this can continue for several months.
  • The life of a pin (an image) is one week. Compare that to five hours for Facebook and 24 minutes for Twitter. Source is Tailwind Blog

If you haven’t started using Pinterest, open an account. If you use Pinterest, you’ll find these tools for writers helpful.

8 Tools for Writers Who Use Pinterest

Viraltag LogoViraltag

For $24/month, you can use Viraltag to schedule and post images to ten social profiles including Pinterest, Tumblr, Twitter, and Facebook. Upload and schedule multiple posts at once – plan for an entire week or even an entire month. Viraltag also connects directly to your Google Drive and Dropbox accounts to pull content in bulk.

Everypost

Everypost starts with a free post on one platform. For $9.99/month, you can post to ten social media channels. One of the platforms you can schedule your images to is, of course, Pinterest. You can also use Everypost to find visual content to post.

Buffer

If you select the Awesome plan, which costs $10/month, you can schedule updates to Pinterest as well as Instagram, Google+, LinkedIn, Facebook, and Twitter.

Tailwind

Use this app to schedule images on both Pinterest and Instagram. You can get started on this application for free and decide whether or not you like it. You can also use this application to discover content to post. A real plus.

Chrome Extensions for Pinterest Make Pinning Effortless 

If you navigate to Chrome’s extension store, you’ll find these tools. 

Pinterest Save Button

When you add this extension to your Chrome taskbar, you’ll be able to save any idea or image you fine on the web so you can easily get back to it later.

Pinterest Chrome Extension

Enjoy using Pinterest Chrome Extension. This app will launch the Pinterest official website.

Pinterest Sort

Use this Chrome extension to sort Boards, create board groups, and do it all “automagically.” The extension promises you less clutter and more pinning.

ShotPin

It’s a simple Chrome browser extension to make it easy to take a screenshot of any web page then share it on Pinterest.

Want to learn more about using Pinterest to drive traffic to your blog and landing pages? Get Pinterest Just for Writers for $5.

 

Frances CaballoAuthor of this blogFrances Caballo is an author and social media strategist and manager for writers. She’s a regular speaker at the San Francisco Writers Conference. In addition, she’s a contributing writer at TheBookDesigner.com, and blogger and Social Media Expert for BookWorks. She’s written several social media books including the 2nd edition of Social Media Just for Writers and The Author’s Guide to Goodreads. Her focus is on helping authors surmount the barriers that keep them from flourishing online, building their platform, finding new readers, and selling more books. Her clients include authors of every genre and writers’ conferences. Not sure how you’re doing online? Sign up for my free email course.

Practical tips for marketing your books on the social web

 

 

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Indie Author Weekly Update – December 1, 2017

Indie Author Weekly Update

This week’s Indie Author Update ranges in topic from social media to book marketing to Facebook. I hope you enjoy the range in topics!

The Writer’s Guide to Social Media Organization from Writer Unboxed: “Today’s writer is busier than ever, and social media can be demanding. Writers have established goals, developed a brand, and know their readers. The best way to stay on top of our career is to incorporate organizational skills into social media. I continue to explore methods to use social media effectively and efficiently. I believe social media can be handled in thirty minutes, leaving us free to do what we do best for the rest of the day—write. Here are 7 ways I’ve learned to categorize social media into a manageable—and enjoyable—process.”

12 Holiday Book Marketing Ideas for Indie Authors by Penny Sansevieri: “On the first day of Christmas ….we all know the song. Most of us are ready to tackle holiday sales, so let’s talk book marketing! In the spirit of the season, I want to share 12 book marketing tips and recommendations indie authors can implement in order to get more holiday sales and definitely more exposure before Christmas.”

67 Top Tools for Writers and Bloggers in 2018 from Write to Done: “It’s often been said, you’re only as good as your tools. And even though a keen mind and an even keener pen (or computer these days) are still the main tools of a writer or blogger in 2018, there are others out there. Which is the problem. ​How do you know which to use? If you tried them all, you’d never write or publish a thing. And if you ignored them all, well, that’s not a smart move either. The serious writer or blogger of today needs to know where the advantages are, what the competition is using.”

How To Get More Facebook Likes: The Beginner’s Guide from Blogging Wizard: “2 billion. Yes, billion, with a B. In June of 2017, that is how many active users Facebook exceeded according to Statista. That amount is staggering, and the awe tends to compound when you hear that over 65% percent of that amount use Facebook daily. Wouldn’t you like a slice of over 2 billion users? Just imagine: 1 percent of that amount and you’re looking at more than 20 million users.”

Increase Engagement in Your Marketing with Visuals from Joel Friedlander and Frances Caballo: “You know the saying that a picture is worth 1,000 words? It may be true but what’s proven is that a photo is better than text when it comes to social media engagement. As much as you may think that you prefer text over visuals, perhaps because you’re a writer, your brain can process images 60,000 times faster than text.”

The Complete Guide to Ebook Distribution by Ricardo Fayet and from Reedsy: “At Reedsy, our goal has always been to help authors through every stage of the publishing process, from the actual writing down to the marketing and promotion. However, if there’s one thing our marketplace can’t do, it’s the actual publishing of the book. By that, I mean pressing the button that puts your book up for sale on Amazon — and other retailers.”

News from Goodreads: The Book Giveaway Program Expands in January 2018: “We’ll be introducing our new Goodreads Giveaways program on January 9, 2018, offering even more powerful book marketing benefits that authors have been asking for. Our new Goodreads Giveaways program includes two packages, Standard and Premium—you can learn more about them below. And for the first time, Kindle Direct Publishing authors can run giveaways for Kindle ebooks—a feature previously only available to traditional publishers.”

Quote of the Week

Doris Lessing

Want to save time with social media? Get Avoid Social Media Time Suckfor FREE.

Social Media Time Suck

 

Frances CaballoAuthor of this blogFrances Caballo is an author and social media strategist and manager for writers. She’s a regular speaker at the San Francisco Writers Conference. In addition, she’s a contributing writer at TheBookDesigner.com, and blogger and Social Media Expert for BookWorks. She’s written several social media books including the 2nd edition of Social Media Just for Writers and The Author’s Guide to Goodreads. Her focus is on helping authors surmount the barriers that keep them from flourishing online, building their platform, finding new readers, and selling more books. Her clients include authors of every genre and writers’ conferences. Not sure how you’re doing online? Sign up for my free email course.

Practical tips for marketing your books on the social web

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Social Media Tips for Writers (And Reluctant Marketers)

Social Media Tips for Writers (And Reluctant Marketers)

The biggest resistance writers have to jumping into social media is that they fear they will need to spend countless hours in front of their computers posting, tweeting, updating, uploading images, and of course, and leaving comments or replying to someone’s message.

I refer to this as the “time suck factor” because if you let it, social media can suck precious time from your day and your writing.

But, news flash, marketing doesn’t have to be an ugly word. And it doesn’t have to be a task you accept grudgingly.

We’re not conducting robocalls or telemarketing. And we’re not creating direct mail appeals – junk mail – that people toss without even opening the envelopes.

We’re in the era of social media marketing, and the beauty of it is that it’s not interruption-based marketing. Your message is waiting for people when they choose to navigate to Twitter or Facebook or other social media networks.

But you’re still afraid that if you start to use social media, you’ll lose track of time and spend hours in front of the computer when you should be writing or going to the gym. Am I right?

Nonsense. Fitting social media into busy schedules is easy and takes disciple. That’s right, discipline to not turn a quick internet research for your book into a foray into your Facebook newsfeed, which, by the way, I’ve done.

So I speak from experience.

Over the years I’ve learned that you can manage your social media marketing and still have time to write, cycle, relax with a novel, or soak up suds in a tub by following a simple four-point plan.

  1. Curate your posts.
  2. Schedule your social media updates.
  3. Be social because the essence of social media is engagement.
  4. Measure your results so that you’ll know how to improve your engagement.

By spending as little as 30 minutes a day, you can grow your contacts, further your brand, sell more books, and stay in touch with colleagues, readers, and friends.

Here are my social media tips for writers that will help you to better manage your time while marketing.

Curate Stellar Content

There are applications and websites that can help you to find great content in your niche. These are a few of my favorites.

Scoop.it

Enter your keywords, and this application will scour the Web for you. You can discard or keep the articles and posts that Scoop.it suggests and even create your own customized “magazine.”

AllTop

Not an application but a website, this is the top online source for the hottest trending information on the entire blogosphere from A to Z. Find information on a range of topics from writing to social media to romance novels.

Blogs

Subscribe to the top blogs in your niche. I curate information from the blogs I subscribe to and doing so provides a shortcut to my curation.

Twitter Lists

Create lists of the top thinkers and writers in your industry. Creating Twitter lists helps me to stay on top of my industry, get through Twitter more quickly, and efficiently curate information to retweet.

Schedule Your Posts in the Morning

There are numerous applications to help you plan your day. Here are a few for you to consider and use at the start of your day.

bufferBuffer

The free version allows you to post four tweets daily while with the paid version – starting at just $10/month – you can post as often as you’d like.

HootSuite

HootSuite offers a great free plan that allows users to tweet and post as often as they’d like. The paid version will allow you to also post to your Google+ pages, a range of social media platforms, and the paid version offers analytics.

SocialOomph

This application is a scheduler on steroids. You can schedule recurring tweets, track keywords and hashtags, check your incoming feeds, and analyze your click-through-rates to your website. They offer a 7-day trial plan that’s free. Note: SocialOomph works best for Twitter and LinkedIn only. It is limited in the breadth of social media platforms it serves.

Tweetdeck

Tweetdeck is a free application that enables you to manage your Twitter feed, schedule tweets, and monitor and manage unlimited accounts.

You Don’t Have to Be a Party Animal to Be Social

It’s important to schedule time in your day to be social. What does this mean?

At the end of your day, right before or after dinner, spend some time on social media.

Like and comment on posts you find in your newsfeed on Facebook. Check your Contact feed on Twitter to see who messaged you or followed you. Reply to tweets by telling users that you liked a quote they sent out. Follow back users who followed you during the day – assuming they are interesting enough – and comment on their blog, website, or Facebook page.

Read a few blogs and leave comments. Check in on one of your groups on LinkedIn and add to the discussion. Check in on your Google+ communities.

In other words, put the social in social media to work but limit your time to about 15 minutes.

Check Your Return on Investment (ROI)

I love this quote:

Social media is like teen sex. Everyone wants to do it. Nobody knows how. When it’s finally done there is surprise it’s not better. Avinash Kaushik, Google Analytics Evangelist

Time is precious, so it’s important to check to see whether your marketing efforts are having any effect. Here are some applications that can help you to make that determination.

Sprout Social

The premium plan comes with a 30-day trial period. Use this application for monitoring profiles and keywords, scheduling posts, and producing reports. The premium level, which is the beginning level, includes ten social media profiles. SproutSocial also measures influence, analyzes your audience, and lets you know whether not you’ve been social enough.

Social Report

With Social Report you can track the performance of everything from your Facebook pages and Twitter profiles, website site performance and blogs. The data from your social channels is downloaded and laid out on a dashboard. And you can track your social media profiles. Pricing starts at $49/month.

Insights

Insights is Facebook’s free and incredibly comprehensive analytics. Once you have 35 or more Likes on your Facebook author page, Insights will reveal your demographics, the best time to post your updates and indicate which posts received the most engagement.

[Read more…]

Indie Author Weekly Update – November 24, 2017

Indie Author Weekly Update

This week’s Indie Author Update ranges in topics from Facebook ads to self-publishing to how to build a media kit. I hope you enjoy all of these posts.

Make Your Own Self-Publisher’s Survival Kit by Joel Friedlander: “Raging wildfires. 500-year hurricanes. Earthquakes triggering mudslides. Sea-level rise. It’s enough to make you want to bury your head under the covers. Both the occurrence of these disasters and the detailed and extensive reporting on them have fueled a growing interest in preparing for the worst. Ads for survival kits, water purification systems, underground vaults, and home protection schemes pop up regularly.”

Boosted Posts vs. Facebook Ads – When to Use Each Type – Andrea Vahl by Andrea Vahl: “Are you using Boosted posts on Facebook?  Wondering when you should boost a post and when you should create a Facebook ad using the Facebook Ads manager? In this post, I’ll talk about some of the pros and cons for Boosting Facebook posts and how to know you are boosting the RIGHT posts as well as when you should use the Facebook Ads manager to create your ad.”

Currently reading: How to Build a Rocking Author Media Kit: a 7-Step Template from Reedsy: “Picture this: you’ve just self-published a book and are gaining some traction in your publicity rounds. Then, out of the blue, a journalist asks you for a headshot, bio, and sell sheet. Don’t panic. By the time you’re done with this post, you’ll be ready to compile an all-purpose key to book publicity: your author media kit. A good media kit is one of the most straightforward ways to win over the press and everyone else who matters during your publicity rounds: book reviewers, bloggers, and indie bookstores.”

The Angsty Relationship Between Writing and Sales from Jane Friedman: “I have an uneasy relationship with sales, partially because I really do wish I could just do this work for free—or barter. I’m always up for a barter especially if it involves angora rabbits. But I also have an uneasy relationship with sales because I came to writing through academic means, and academics still live, oddly, with an idea of meritocracy as the way people get recognition for what they do.”

Using Book Promotions Sites to Launch Your Book from Dave Chesson: “In today’s episode, we learn about book promotion sites, how they actually work, and how authors can use them in order to get their books to a large number of readers.  They can be a powerful tool for book launches, as well as a steady drip of sales over time.”

Top 10 Ways Your Website Leaves Readers, and Leads, in the Dust by Joan Stewart: “Regardless of how long you’ve been writing or publishing books, I’ll bet you’re making at least three of the Top 10 mistakes I see often at author websites. These missteps are so prevalent that I now do a quick review of every website when authors hire me for consulting – even if they don’t ask for my opinion. What good are my book marketing recommendations if the website falls short of the minimum standards a journalist or visitor will expect?”

Quote of the Week

Tolstoy

Want to save time with social media? Get Avoid Social Media Time Suck for FREE.

Social Media Time Suck

 

Frances CaballoAuthor of this blogFrances Caballo is an author and social media strategist and manager for writers. She’s a regular speaker at the San Francisco Writers Conference. In addition, she’s a contributing writer at TheBookDesigner.com, and blogger and Social Media Expert for BookWorks. She’s written several social media books including the 2nd edition of Social Media Just for Writers and The Author’s Guide to Goodreads. Her focus is on helping authors surmount the barriers that keep them from flourishing online, building their platform, finding new readers, and selling more books. Her clients include authors of every genre and writers’ conferences. Not sure how you’re doing online? Sign up for my free email course.

Practical tips for marketing your books on the social web

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Meet Rebecca Vnuk of IndiePicks Magazine

Rebecca Vnuk


Rebecca VnukToday’s blog post is an interview with Rebecca Vnuk, Editor in Chief of
IndiePicks Magazine. Rebecca was most recently the Editor for Collection Management and Library Outreach with Booklist Publications and has an MLIS from Dominican University. Before her editing career, Rebecca worked for a decade as a public librarian, in a variety of positions from Readers’ Advisor to adult services management. She is the author of three reference books on the topic of Women’s Fiction, as well as a best-selling book on weeding library collections.

Please explain why IndiePicks was formed and what it hopes to accomplish.

Our publisher, Naomi Blackburn, is a huge fan of indie authors. She noticed that the review magazines she’d look at in her local library rarely mentioned indies and never mentioned any self-pubbed authors, so she decided she wanted to create a review magazine that would.

Do you see IndiePicks as filling a void in the industry?

Yes–it’s hard enough for librarians and readers to keep up with what the “Big Five” are putting out there, and many times, libraries won’t/can’t order books without a professional review.

Which categories or genres does IndiePicks consider? Are there genres that IndiePicks won’t consider?

Right now, we have started with ten reviewers who cover General Fiction, General Nonfiction, YA, Children’s, Romance, Horror, Science Fiction/Fantasy, Mystery/Thrillers. We hope to grow in the new year to separate out even more fiction and non-fiction categories. We’ll consider any book that’s well-written!

What is meant by the statement that “IndiePicks is a recommended-only resource”?

Some review sources do offer negative reviews, but we’d prefer to use our space to promote only books that our review team would recommend to readers or purchase for their own library collections.

Why don’t libraries include independently-published books? Or, do some libraries carry these books that you know of? Is there a process for considering them?

Some do, many do not. There are a lot of factors at play, from whether or not they are getting requests for these books to whether or not they are seeing reviews for them (can’t buy them if you don’t know about them!). That’s where we’d like to think we come in. Several of our reviewers are actively adding indie books to their public library collections, and that’s part of the reason they’ve been selected to review for us!

Why do you think some libraries are hesitant to include independently published books?

I would wager that it’s mostly because they don’t know enough about them. If they aren’t getting professional reviews, then librarians don’t know if they are any good or not. We are in tough times right now for most library budgets, and many librarians simply aren’t comfortable spending precious dollars on unproven works or unknown authors. It’s a difficult spot to be in.

What is your vision as editor for IndiePicks Magazine?

I hope that we continue to grow and add more reviewers, which equals more books that we can review each month! I also would love to see us branch out into a one-stop shop for indies. Who knows? Webinars? Lists? All kinds of opportunities await.

[Read more…]

Indie Author Weekly Update – November 17, 2017

Indie Author Weekly Update

This edition of the Indie Author Weekly Update is chockfull of helpful tips. From Facebook ads to author websites to cross-promotion, you’ll find information to help you sell more books.

Indie Author Updates

Unpublished Writers and Websites: Should You Have One and What Should It Say? by Jane Friedman: “If you plan to pursue writing as a professional, long-term career, I recommend starting and maintaining an author website even if you’re unpublished. Your website serves as an online home and hub for everything that you do, whether in real life or in the digital realm. You fully own and control it, tell your own story, and connect directly with the media, readers or influencers. It’s hard to overstate its importance over the long term. Consider it the cost of doing business in the digital era, a necessary business card and networking tool.”

Use Your Author Website To Make Readers Care About You As A Writer  from Web Design Relief: “As a writer, your job is to create a narrative that hooks the reader, raises curiosity, elicits empathy, and leaves the reader satisfied. But have you ever considered how these fundamentals of storytelling can be harnessed to improve your author website?”

Email Marketing: The Complete Beginner’s Guide from Blogging Wizard: “If you’re a small business owner doing business online, the thought of not making any conversions can make you lose sleep at night. You work hard at creating your website – or the online version of your brick and mortar business – with a distinct brand and logo. You even heard that blogging can generate up to 67% more leads, so you start your own company blog.”

Pronoun Is Dead: The Ebook Retail Universe Redux from TheBoodDesigner.com and by David Kudler: “I’m bummed. On November 6, Macmillan’s Pronoun, the distributor that I had begun to rely on more and more over the past year, announced that it was shutting down its operations. No new books can be uploaded; Pronoun will remove all existing books from distribution on January 15, 2018.”

The 4 Best Types of Facebook Ads for Authors by Andrea Vahl: “Are you an author who wants to promote your book with Facebook Ads?  It can be overwhelming to know what is going to be most effective.  In this post, I’ll show you the 4 best types of Facebook Ads for Authors and how to approach your marketing strategy on Facebook. The first thing to clear up is that there are different types of authors and different goals for your book.  And once you are clear on the next step a reader should take with you, your marketing strategy becomes clearer.”

14 Ways Authors Can Cross-Promote Each Other’s Books from BookBub: “Many authors cross-promote each other’s books to gain visibility with a relevant new audience of readers. It’s a mutually beneficial way to inexpensively boost book sales and word-of-mouth buzz — and to make new friends and build relationships in the publishing community!”

Awards News

Jesmyn Ward Wins Second National Book Award in Fiction from Publishing Perspectives: “Jesmyn Ward led Wednesday evening’s (November 15) National Book Award honors, for her Sing, Unburied, Sing, becoming a two-time winner of the prize.” Her earlier award came in 2011 for Salvage the Bones (Bloomsbury USA).

Fiction Writing Contests

Fiction Writing Contests Worth Your Time (Winter 2017 Edition) from Writer Unboxed: “Much like editors are looking for reasons to reject work, I want to focus on opportunities worth my time. Thus, my list of writing contests below includes reasons to submit to that particular writing contest. May you find a promising opportunity among this list and spend less time searching for where to send your exceptional work.”

Quote of the Week

Ernest Hemingway

New to blogging? Check out Blogging Just for Writers 

Blogging Just for Writers by Frances Caballo

Frances CaballoAuthor of this blogFrances Caballo is an author and social media strategist and manager for writers. She’s a regular speaker at the San Francisco Writers Conference. In addition, she’s a contributing writer at TheBookDesigner.com, and blogger and Social Media Expert for BookWorks. She’s written several social media books including the 2nd edition of Social Media Just for Writers and The Author’s Guide to Goodreads. Her focus is on helping authors surmount the barriers that keep them from flourishing online, building their platform, finding new readers, and selling more books. Her clients include authors of every genre and writers’ conferences. Not sure how you’re doing online? Sign up for my free email course.

Practical tips for marketing your books on the social web

 

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50 Blogging Topics for Authors

Blogging Topics

Do you struggle with coming up with blogging topics?

Hey, I wouldn’t be honest if I said that blogging is such a breeze, I could do it in my sleep. Or when I’m sleep-deprived.

There are times when blogging topics come to me in bunches. I could be sitting at my desk, and one thought triggers another, and before I know it, I have six or seven or even ten new blogging topics.

I love those times.

But then there are also the other times. You know, when my fountain of creativity has run dry.

There have been times when I’ve followed my advice and set up a blogging calendar. I’ve used Excel to track my topics, an online app, a scrap of paper floating around my desk, or just a Word doc to keep all of my blog topics organized.

But lately, I seem to be a seat-of-my-pants type of blogger. During these times, I tend to write about whatever is up with me whether there’s something new in social media I’m trying to learn or certain issues that keep cropping up.

I know that other authors have this problem too because they’ve asked me for advice on what to blog about.

When we publish our first book, especially if it’s a nonfiction book, we think we’ve said everything we can on the topic. Then we find out that we need an author website and blog. So we wonder, should I write about my cancer, my trip to the Bahamas, or my garden?

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Indie Author Weekly Update – November 10, 2017

Indie Author Weekly Update

This week’s Indie Author Update covers everything from social media marketing to growing an email list to guest blogging. I’m sure that in the posts below, you’ll find some that speak to you right now.

You’ll want to sign up for the Amy Collins webinar this month. The sign-up link is at the bottom of this post. Amy is awesome and a wealth of knowledge.

Indie Author Updates

How to Tame the Social Media Beast by Chris Syme: “When it comes to book marketing, there is no bigger potential time waster than social media. There are approximately 210 social media sites listed on Wikipedia (global numbers). Of those 210, there are about ten that you can probably name and of those ten there are three to five that authors feel they have to be active on.”

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