Book Launch Case Study with Mike Sahno

Book Launch Tips with Mike Sahno

I met Mike Sahno on Twitter and was impressed by his book launch success. So I asked him to share his experience so that you could learn his tips. Here is our interview.

When did you start writing? And what was the experience?

I wrote a lot of poems and songs in high school and college. Everyone knew me as Class Poet or Editor-in-Chief of the literary magazine. I was a real literature fanatic. I tried my hand at a few short stories in college, but I didn’t really know what I was doing. It wasn’t until I finished graduate school that I started writing my first novel, Brothers’ Hand.

I’ve always been in love with the experience of having written. The actual writing time is often torturous.

How long have you been using social media to reach your readers?

I didn’t even know how to enroll readers at all until 2016 when I started my own publishing company to publish my first three novels. I’d been on Twitter for a year by then, but again, didn’t know what I was doing.

Which platforms do you use regularly?

Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, and YouTube. I also have a LinkedIn profile for my publishing company, but I don’t expect to get many fiction readers on that platform. You never know, though.

Soon after you launched your book, Whizzers, your Amazon ranking in your categories was phenomenal. (Mike’s rankings for his categories were in the low one hundreds.) Please detail every step you took in terms of prelaunch, presales, and formal launch. What did you do and what was your approach? Did you release any advanced reader copies?

Mike Sahno Amazon Rankings

I certainly didn’t do it alone! One challenge I’ve faced all along has been my unwillingness to join the KDP world on Amazon. I’m sure I’ve paid the price by going wide, but I’m not comfortable with Amazon “giving” me an ISBN or having any control over when I can publish my books on other platforms. I’ve read some negative feedback on their POD service, too, and that was a deal-breaker. I’m a stickler for high-quality print for the paperback versions of my books, and IngramSpark has been solid in my experience.

Whizzers by Mike SahnoFor Whizzers, I put more time, effort, and money into the entire launch process than I had with the other novels. I’d learned lessons about how hard it is getting book bloggers or reviewers, so I reached out to well over a hundred to set up a blog tour to run from 7/19-7/31, with the actual publication coming towards the beginning of the tour, on 7/21. I also invited a zillion people to an in-person launch event on 7/20. Lastly, as a follow-up to the initial launch, I’m running a marketing campaign to get Whizzers into as many libraries as I can.

At writer’s conferences, experts encourage writers to form a VIP list or street team and dedicated readers who will spread the word online about our new books. Do you have a street team?

I do, and here’s where I answer the rest of the previous question! I went through my contacts list, including some fellow authors I’ve connected with on social media, and invited many people to join my launch group. That group is a separate segment of my email newsletter list, so they’re getting my regular emails and special messages just for them, with unique content. I also created a private Whizzers VIP Launch Group on Facebook.

 I made ARC’s available to the entire launch group, and I put the novel up for pre-order a good month before the publication date.

 There were a few glitches: for one, I tried to roll out a cover reveal in stages on social media to build interest in the book. By the time that got underway, IngramSpark had already sent the book data to Amazon, so Amazon was already listing it. If someone wanted to see more than, say, 2/3 of the cover, or whatever I was revealing, all they had to do was find it on Amazon!

I hear some authors complain that readers are unable to leave reviews on Amazon. Has that been a problem with any of your readers?

So far, so good, but the jury is still out. A couple of people have messaged me that they submitted reviews, but they’re not up yet. However, Amazon hasn’t sent them an email indicating it rejected their reviews.  I find Amazon’s review process to be wildly inconsistent. Sometimes a submitted review goes up within hours; other times, it takes days.

Do you think that your master’s degree in English helped you to become a better writer?

Absolutely. I know it’s common now for folks to become very successful with little to no formal post-secondary education. But I familiarized myself with much of “the canon,” plus a good deal of lesser-known European literature, around 30 years ago. Balzac, Proust, those kinds of writers. People can read all this stuff on their own, but I benefited from those lively discussions with professors and other students. Also, I’ve worked full-time as a writer since 2001. I think that, for me, there’s a real benefit to that combination of education and practical experience.

We hear that it’s essential to publish a lot of books as quickly as possible. How do you feel about that advice?

I think it depends on your goals. For me, I would say the opposite is true: take the time required to create the best possible lasting work of art. It might be two years. It might be seven. Each of my first three novels took around seven years since I was working full-time when I wrote them. If someone wants to churn out a product quickly to make a buck, that’s their prerogative. But if I want to create novels that will outlive me, I can’t write them that fast. 

Have you considered writing a series? It seems as though your books are quite disparate.

It’s a great business model for a writer, especially when you can hook a reader with a freebie to introduce them, and they’ll want to buy all the others. But I don’t have it in me to write that way. I could crank out some genre fiction, and I’d probably make more money, but I’d hate every minute of it. My models are more like John Gardner, who wrote Grendel, John Fowles, of The French Lieutenant’s Woman fame. William Styron. I’m not saying I’m in the same league as those guys, but I aspire to that kind of greatness.

Do you already have an idea for your next book?

I have two works in progress, and they’re about as disparate as you can get. Once the dust settles on this Whizzers launch, I’m going to play around with them and figure out which one it will be. Whatever it is, it’s going to be different!

Mike Sahno: I’ve always been in love with the experience of having written. The actual writing time is often torturous.

 

 

Want to know all of my best social media marketing tips? Get a copy of Social Media Just for Writers.

Social Media Just for Writers 2nd Edition

Well written, well researched – well thought out. This book is a must have!

Ryshia Kennie 

 

Born in Bristol, CT, Michael J. Sahno began writing stories at an early age. He obtained a Master of Arts in English from Binghamton University, Binghamton, NY at the age of 24, going on to become a full-time professional writer in 2001.

Since founding Sahno Publishing in 2015, he has gone on to achieve national and international recognition, gaining over 20,000 followers on Twitter and publishing and selling four novels both in the U.S. and abroad.

Sahno has ghostwritten books for entrepreneurs in the U.S., and continues to electrify audiences with his story and his natural gift for entertaining while informing. He is available for professional speaking engagements upon request.

Frances Caballo

Author of this blogFrances Caballo is an author and social media strategist and manager for writers. She wrote several social media books including 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 and building their platform. Her clients have included authors of every genre and writers’ conferences. Not sure how you’re doing online? Sign up for her free email course. And follow her on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook.

Online Book Marketing Strategies for Writers

Indie Author Weekly Update – August 2, 2019

Indie Author Weekly Update 8-2-19

This week’s Indie Author Update has so much super information to help you succeed as an indie author. Be sure to check out master blogger Anne R. Allen’s advice on author blogs. She has a stellar blog herself. David Penny also has some advice that makes so much sense for the indie author. Well, just read all of them if you can.

Elevator Pitches

Razzle-Dazzle: The Art and Craft of the Elevator Pitch by Ruth Harris: “What works on Broadway in the hit musical, Chicago, also works for selling a book because you do want a reaction that will be passionate.”

Indie Author Book Promotion

Put Readers First – an Essential Ingredient of Successful Book Marketing – from Alliance of Independent Authors: Self-Publishing Advice Center and by David Penny: “When I started self-publishing historical novels in 2014, I connected on social media with a frenzy as I attempted to persuade people to buy my books. Oh, I was a good social member and didn’t spam my titles, but I had made a big mistake with who I was connecting to.”

5 Best Book Promotion Strategies for Romance Authors by Penny Sansevieri: “Romance writing is such a unique market. We know it’s busy and popular, but your readers are also veracious. They read a lot, and they love discovering new authors. Romance authors have been given a wonderful opportunity to really speak to readers on a very personal level, and every element of their book promotion must reflect this. Every time they purchase one of your titles, they’re inviting you into their lives and admitting their (sometimes very secret) fantasies and desires!”

Amazon Advertising

Amazon Advertising Insights with Black Books – Podcast by Joanna Penn and with Russell Blake: “Surf the changes and get to grips with Amazon Ads — or outsource them if you’re ready to. Some hard talking — and encouragement — with Russell Blake today, as well as tips from Michael Beverly.”

Author Blogs

Blogging Is a Potent Tool for Author Platform Building – from BookWorks and by Anne R. Allen: “If you tell your non-writing friends you’re thinking of starting a blog, somebody is sure to tell you that blogging is “totally over.” Just give them an indulgent smile. People have been declaring blogging dead pretty much since it started. Google “blogging is dead” and you’ll see thousands of entries. But it turns out the blog is a pretty resilient medium.”

Quote of the WeekQuote: the best writing advice is also the best life advice_ remember that nobody else has any idea what they’re doing, either.

 

 

Want to know all of my best social media marketing tips? Get a copy of Social Media Just for Writers.

Social Media Just for Writers 2nd Edition

Well written, well researched – well thought out. This book is a must have!

Ryshia Kennie 

Frances CaballoAuthor of this blogFrances Caballo is an author and social media strategist and manager for writers. She wrote several social media books including 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 and building their platform. Her clients have included authors of every genre and writers’ conferences. Not sure how you’re doing online? Sign up for her free email course. And follow her on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook.

Online Book Marketing Strategies for Writers

Indie Author Weekly Update – July 12, 2019

Indie Author Weekly Update - July 12, 2019

Here’s another Indie Author Weekly Update for you. There are posts on book marketing, book launches, and book sales. I hope that the tips you glean from these posts help you in your own book marketing efforts. Enjoy!

Software

The Top Software for Writers of 2019 + [Coupons and Extra Resources] from Dave Chesson: “By now, you’ve probably realized the advantages of using professional-grade software. Pro tools can give you a timesaving edge throughout your entire writing process. But how many programs do you really need? And which ones are the best?”

Book Marketing

Book Marketing: How To Make Your Blog Work For Books And Author Brand with Amy Shojai and from Joanna Penn: “Your author website is the one piece of internet real-estate that is entirely under your control. Amy Shojai shares how to make the most of the blog on your site to attract new readers, build your author brand, and sell more books.

Attraction Marketing And Tips For Creative Business With Andre Chaperon from Joanna Penn: “Many authors are introverts and prefer creation to marketing, but what if you could use your words to attract your perfect target market? In today’s episode, André Chaperon gives some valuable tips for building a sustainable creative business.”

Book Launches

How to Run a Book Launch for Maximum Sales from BookBub Partners and by Diana Urban: “When you’re preparing for a book launch, there’s a massive amount of book marketing tactics you can choose from — but which will make the biggest impact on sales? Which will give you the best shot at hitting a bestseller list? And if you’re a traditionally published author, what can you do in tandem with your publisher to become a bestseller?”

Book Reviews

A Short and Sweet Beginner’s Guide to Securing Amazon Reviews from Jane Friedman’s blog and by Penny Sansevieri: “Reviews can be a tremendous help in driving the sale of a book. In fact, a marketing survey company found that 61% of online purchases were made after reading a review. Reviews on Amazon can also help your book turn up more often in customer searches.”

Quote of the Week

Talent is insignificant. I know a lot of talented ruins. Beyond talent lie all the usual words_ discipline, love, luck, but most of all, endurance. James Baldwin

 

Want to know all of my best social media marketing tips? Get a copy of Social Media Just for Writers.

Social Media Just for Writers 2nd Edition

Well written, well researched – well thought out. This book is a must have!

Ryshia Kennie 

Frances CaballoAuthor of this blogFrances Caballo is an author and social media strategist and manager for writers. She wrote several social media books including 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 and building their platform. Her clients have included authors of every genre and writers’ conferences. Not sure how you’re doing online? Sign up for her free email course. And follow her on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook.

Online Book Marketing Strategies for Writers

Indie Author Weekly Update – June 28, 2019

Indie Author Weekly Update - June 28, 2019

It’s Friday so that means it’s time for a new Indie Author Weekly Update. You’ll find posts on blogging, book marketing, creativity, and author websites. Be sure to take a look at the websites profiled in the post from BookBub Partners. When planning yours, or even updating one you have, you’ll definitely get some ideas from the author websites profiled in the post.

Blogging

We’re all Bozos on this Bus: 10 Lessons from 10 Years of Blogging by Anne R. Allen: “Ooops. I seem to have missed my 10-year blogiversary! I posted my first attempt at blogging on Friday, March 13, 2009. Yes, Friday the 13th. Apparently I have a need to tempt fate.”

Creativity

Creation Is Messy–And That’s Okay from Writer Unboxed and by Julie Duffy: “Late last summer I ran down to the basement to throw on a load of laundry before meeting a friend for coffee…and stepped, ankle-deep, into my own private paddling pool.”

Book Marketing

Book Marketing from a Standing Start as an Indie Author from Alliance of Independent Authors and by Alastair Crombie: “The longer you’re in an industry, the more knowledge and information you build.  It’s hard to remember those early days of no readers and single-sale days. But there’s a huge number of debut authors publishing every day. ALLi experience shows that it can take up to seven years for an indie author to earn a living from their books. Author member Alastair Crombie has just launched his first book and explains what book marketing from a standing start is like in the current market.”

A New Book Blurb Could Revolutionize Your Sales from Alliance of Independent Authors: Self-Publishing Advice Center and by and by Adam Croft: “One of the main advantages of being an indie author is being able to be flexible and adaptable. We can make small, immediate changes and alter entire strategies by turning on a sixpence. But what if I told you the most powerful change you can make is free and will take less than an hour?”

Author Websites

45+ Author Websites with Stellar Designs from BookBub Partners: “Many successful authors have websites that are the hub of their online marketing activity — they provide a central platform for everything from blogging to book sales and email newsletters. But what should you include in an author website?”

Quote of the Week

Indie Author quote

 

Want to know all of my best social media marketing tips? Get a copy of Social Media Just for Writers.

Social Media Just for Writers 2nd Edition

Well written, well researched – well thought out. This book is a must have!

Ryshia Kennie 

Frances CaballoAuthor of this blogFrances Caballo is an author and social media strategist and manager for writers. She wrote several social media books including 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 and building their platform. Her clients have included authors of every genre and writers’ conferences. Not sure how you’re doing online? Sign up for her free email course. And follow her on Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook.

 

Online Book Marketing Strategies for Writers

Indie Author Weekly Update – May 3, 2019

Indie Author Weekly Update - May 3, 2019

Here’s another edition of the Indie Author Weekly Update. Think social media has gone to the dogs? Well, not yet. Take a look at this week’s posts and you’ll find new ways to market your books.

Indie Author Weekly UpdateBy the way, my dog Paisley (pictured to the right) now has her own Instagram account. I’d love it if you’d follow her on her very own Instagram account. You can also follow me here. See you on the ‘Gram!

Book Marketing Tips

Let’s Get Meta by David Gaughran: “When should you cut names from your mailing list? Why should you do it at all? How to you actually go through the process of doing it? Are there any risks involved? We’ll cover all that today using this list as an example. Told you it was meta!”

5 Marketing Tips from Amazon that Deliver [Infographic] by Meg Carpenter: “Looking for marketing inspiration? Look no further – the team from Talkwalker have pulled out 5 marketing tactics from one of the top 10 most valuable brands in the world: Amazon.”

Book Promotion: Do This, Not That – May 2019 by Amy Collins: “When a store turns us away when we offer them a book for sale, that is not usually a solid “no.” It is an answer to our first question. Perhaps we are not asking the right question. We were asking them to give us money in exchange for our books before we have proven that our books will make them money in return.”

News from Books2Digital

Introducing Reading Lists from Books2Read! by Kevin Tumlinson: “When we created Universal Book Links, we change the game — giving authors a tool that lets them send readers to everywhere a book is sold online …”

Author Websites

Step By Step Tutorial: How To Build Your Own Author Website In 30 Minutes  by Joanna Penn: “I currently write under three different author names, including one new pseudonym that I demonstrate in these tutorials. I’ve built a multi-six-figure business off the back of my author websites, so I know how important your site and email list are. Whether you’re just starting out with your first book, or you want to improve your existing author platform, this tutorial should help you along the way.”

Twitter

Twitter for Authors: How to Connect with Readers and Writers from BookBub Partners and by Julia Hansen: “Social media sites like Twitter are great for helping writers build and interact with a loyal, enthusiastic following. When used effectively, these platforms can help you expand your reach and boost engagement. Before jumping into the fray, it’s important to know how to effectively use Twitter to promote your books, connect with readers, and build a community (hint: it’s not all about marketing). So here are some of our top tips for making the most of Twitter!”

Of Note

36 Writing Contests in May 2019 – No entry fees

Quote of the Week

Writing is like painting with words, the paper is the canvas, the pen is the brush

 

Want to know all of my best social media marketing tips? Get a copy of Social Media Just for Writers.

Social Media Just for Writers 2nd Edition

Well written, well researched – well thought out. This book is a must have!

Ryshia Kennie 

Frances CaballoAuthor of this blogFrances Caballo is an author and social media strategist and manager for writers. She wrote several social media books including 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 and building their platform. Her clients have included authors of every genre and writers’ conferences. Not sure how you’re doing online? Sign up for her free email course.

Online Book Marketing Strategies for Writers

Indie Author Weekly Update – April 5, 2019

Indie Author Weekly Update

This week’s Indie Author Weekly Update includes posts on Audiobooks, marketing, and information on how to secure book reviews. Enjoy them all!

Audiobooks

Why Indie Authors Should Publish Audiobooks – and How To Do It – Alliance of Independent Authors: Self-Publishing Advice Center by Amy Shojai: “Don’t yet have your books on audio? Wondering whether it’s worth the investment of time and money? ALLi Professional member Amy Shojai,who writes fiction and non-fiction on animal themes,  makes a persuasive case for taking the plunge into audio and suggests different options.”

Brand Protection

Author Brand Protection: Monitoring Your Online Reputation by Dave Chesson: “Over the course of my author branding series here at BookWorks, I’ve explained and explored the importance of creating a powerful author brand that accurately and beneficially represents you and your writing. Now, you’ll want to maintain that sterling reputation, by monitoring your online presence and interactions for author brand protection.”

Get Those Book Reviews

Ways to Get Book Reviews: The Power of Recommendation by Penny Sansevieri: “Personal recommendations account for 95% of all book sales. That’s a powerful statement, and it really speaks to the fact that people like what other people like. So, when authors ask me if book reviews are still a great way to sell a book, I always say ‘yes’ because great book reviews really tap into the power of the personal recommendation. Which brings us to the inevitable—how to get book reviews?”

Book Marketing

Book Marketing: World Book Day Visits for Indie Authors from Alliance of Independent Authors: Self-Publishing Advice Center: “In today’s post, British children’s writer Sue Bough shares her first experience of marking World Book Day in a local school, where she had great fun gathering feedback from young readers, learning important marketing lessons for future reference, and working alongside bestselling children’s authors on an equal footing.”

Start with Your Accordion Mostly Closed from TheBookDesigner.com and by Beth Barany: “When I was starting on my path as a novelist, I just dove right in, but I had no idea what I was doing. It was scary but I was determined to stick with it, no matter what. Soon I found roadmaps of sorts to guide me along my way. I didn’t know if these “how to” guides would get me to The End but I persisted.”

Quote of the Week

Write about only three things_ what you love, what you hate, and what you’re deeply conflicted about.

 

Want to know all of my best social media marketing tips? Get a copy of Social Media Just for Writers.

Social Media Just for Writers 2nd Edition

Well written, well researched – well thought out. This book is a must have!

Ryshia Kennie 

Frances CaballoAuthor of this blogFrances Caballo is an author and social media strategist and manager for writers. She wrote several social media books including 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 and building their platform. Her clients have included authors of every genre and writers’ conferences. Not sure how you’re doing online? Sign up for her free email course.

Online Book Marketing Strategies for Writers

Are You Ready for Book Marketing? Take This Quiz

Are You Ready for Book Marketing? Take This Quiz

Book marketing involves so many steps.

When people come to me, they erroneously think that all they need is social media marketing.

Au contraire.

Social media alone won’t cause your books to start flying off the proverbial bookshelf.

So, take this quiz and see if you’re ready to tackle book marketing on your own.

Did You Write the Best Book You Possibly Could?

Yes, book marketing starts with your book. If you wrote a historical fiction novel, how well did you research it? Did you hire the absolute best editor you could afford plus a copyeditor?

And did you attend writing workshops to hone your craft?

Who Created Your Book Cover?

book coverIt’s best if you don’t rely on Fiverr for your cover. And it’s best if you don’t use a photo you took.

Subscribe to TheBookDesigner.com. Every month, Joel Friedlander, a book designer, judges submissions from writers.

By reading his reviews, you’ll learn a lot about good and bad covers, and you’ll glean names of good book designers. Or, you can ask Joel for a recommendation. That’s how I found mine.

Book Marketing Essential: Choose the Best Amazon Categories

Amazon categoriesYou could upload your book to KDP if you’d like and select your own categories. Before doing that, I suggest you conduct some research.

Selecting your keywords and categories is critical to being found on Amazon. So, make your selections carefully. Here’s a post by Kindlepreneur with Dave Chesson on how to find the best categories: Secret Method to Choosing Amazon Book Categories in KDP.

Are You Planning on a Preorder

Preorders are de rigueur these days.

When you schedule a preorder for a month, you are building sales and then when your book is available to download, you’ll have a boatload of reviews.

All those reviews boost your book in Amazon’s search engine.

Can People Listen to Your Book?

audiobookThese days, it’s important to publish your book in as many formats as possible.

You want your readers to be able to read a paperback, download an ebook, listen to an audiobook, or enjoy a boxed set.

I’ve had clients who have only had their books formatted into paperbacks. Guess what kind of book sales they had? Yep.

No amount of social media marketing can help an author who doesn’t take advantage of all the ways that consumers buy books these days.

[Read more…]

How Not to Market Your Book – 12 Rookie Mistakes

market your book

Did you just publish your first book? It’s an exciting time, isn’t it? You’re probably thinking that now it’s time to market your book.

To learn about how to market your book, you’re probably reading blog posts like mine and absorbing as much information as you can.

Writers put so much energy into writing their books that they have little time to think about marketing them until the final edit is done.

That’s when your head tends to come up and when you stop typing. You think to yourself, “It’s time to publish!”

Mistakes You Make When You Market Your Book 

 No. 1 – You Start Too Late 

market your bookThe first mistake writers make is that they focus solely on their writing and not on their marketing while they write a book.

Sure, your writing needs to be top-notch, but if you don’t start to market your book early enough, it won’t matter how well you wrote your book.

As soon as you have an idea for your book and start to write it, start your marketing.

Solution: Find a reputable website developer and build a website. Here’s a post I wrote on author websites. Read it. If you need referrals to website developers, ask me.

No. 2 – You Don’t Blog 

Start a blog. At this stage, you can blog about your writing process, characters you kill off, places where you write, and reasons why you write.

No. 3 – You Think You Don’t Have Time for Social Media 

think about your readers. Who are they? Why would they want to read your book?
Look at Pew Research Centersocial media studies to determine which social media networks your readers use. Start to use at least one social media network that your readers use.

Six months later, learn how to use another social media network that your readers use.

No. 4 – You Exclude Your Publishing to Paperback Books

This is a real problem that I’ve encountered with some clients.

Publishing today, if you want to be successful, needs to include paperbacks, ebooks, audiobooks, and box sets.

The more options you give your readers, the more ways they’ll have to buy what you write.

No. 5 – You Go Wide Right Away

amazonWhen you start out in publishing, it’s preferable not to go wide. In other words, with your first and second books, limit your publishing to Amazon. Doing this will make your books eligible for KDP Select, which will enable you to discount your book to $.0 for five days each quarter.

Also, when you are in the KDP Select Program, Amazon automatically enrolls your book in Kindle Unlimited as well as the Kindle Owners’ Lending Library, a collection of books that Amazon Prime members who own a Kindle can choose one book each month with no due dates.

The KDP Select Program offers opportunities that new authors can benefit from.

Once you write your third book, then go wide. In other words, use a service, such as Draft2Digitalto publish your books on iTunes, Kobo, and elsewhere.

No. 6 – You Think Giving Books Away for Free is Dumb

I used to think that. I figured that after all my research, writing, three editors, designers, etc., that it would be ludicrous to give my book away for free.

Man was I wrong.

As a new writer, you don’t have readers yet. One way to acquire readers is to give your book away for free.

Sign up for KDP Select and use your free promotional days. Send free copies of your books to leaders in your niche and industry. Send copies of your books to bloggers and give away ten copies of your book on Goodreads.

No. 7 – You Don’t Learn About Amazon’s Categories

Before uploading your book to Amazon through Kindle Direct Publishing, learn about keyword phrases and categories.

Here is a list of the BISAC codesyou need to know so you can find your categories.

Also, learn about keyword phrases. This is an excellent postfrom Dave Chesson of Kindlepreneur about how to conduct your keyword research.

No. 8 – You Ignore Goodreads

GoodreadsPlease don’t ignore Goodreads. It’s a social media network for readers.

When you join, don’t use this channel purely for marketing. Goodreads, above everything else, is a network designed for readers. A good number of its users have graduate degrees.

So when you join Goodreads, build your library of books you’ve read and write reviews regularly. Also, join a group and give some of your books away for free.

No. 9 – You Don’t Help to Market Your Colleagues’ Books

As you write your book, get to know writers in your genre. After you publish, continue to meet other writers in your genre. Retweet them, share their blog posts, and help them to be a success.

In other words, build a cooperative gathering of similarly minded writers who help each other find success.

No. 10 – You Talk About Your books and Yourself too Much on Social Media

Too often, writers view social media as advertising channels. They aren’t.

The essence of social media is that it’s social. Ask and answer questions. Find information that your readers would love that you didn’t produce.

Social media isn’t about you and your books and blog posts. It’s about the community you build.

No. 11 – You Don’t Include a Letter to the Reader in Your Book Requesting a Review

Every book needs a letter to the reader. Some people put it in the front of the book, but most people include it after the last page.

Thank your readers for buying your book and tell them how much it would mean to you if they would leave a review, especially on Amazon.

 No. 12 – You Don’t Develop a Street Team

social mediaA writer needs help selling her books. You can hire assistants or people like myself or publicists. Even if you hired those three categories of experts, you would still need a street team t.

Members of a street team receive advance reader copies of your books, they tweet about your books, post on Facebook about your books, and take a picture of your cover and put it on Instagram.

In other words, these readers love your books so much that they talk about them and recommend them. They may even help you get speaking gigs locally.

Do whatever you can to develop a dedicated street team. And treat them well. Give the members of your street team chachkies, free books, a kindle, or an Amazon gift certificate. These are your most dedicated readers, and they deserve your loyalty and special treatment.

How Not to Market Your Book - 12 Rookie Mistakes

 

Want to know all of my best social media marketing tips? Get a copy of Social Media Just for Writers.

Social Media Just for Writers 2nd Edition

Well written, well researched – well thought out. This book is a must have!

Ryshia Kennie 

Frances CaballoAuthor of this blogFrances Caballo is an author and social media strategist and manager for writers. She wrote several social media books including 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, and finding new readers. Her clients have included authors of every genre and writers’ conferences. Not sure how you’re doing online? Sign up for her free email course.

Online Book Marketing Strategies for Writers

Indie Author Weekly Update – January 18, 2019

Indie Author Weekly Update - January 18, 2019

Welcome back to the Indie Author Weekly Update. This week’s roundup has an excellent array of posts from marketers and bloggers on book marketing. Plus, there’s a short video clip from Dave Chesson on Amazon ads. I’m certain you’ll find all of the information below helpful to your book marketing endeavors. Enjoy the posts!

Social Media Throwdown: Facebook Groups by Julie Glover: “So where I have landed in the scheme of social media? Once I passed about a thousand followers on Twitter and followed as many, that platform became overwhelming. I really only use it to share articles, check in on current events, and track certain hashtags. The rest of the time, I default to Facebook.”

A Guide to Getting More Reader Reviews by BookBub Partners: “This guide shares some tried and tested strategies to generate more reader reviews on retailer sites. It will also help you learn what practices to avoid so retailer sites don’t remove them. If you’ve struggled to get reviews or simply need more, check these out!”

Book Promotion: Do This, Not That – January 2019 from TheBookDesigner.com and by Amy Collins: “Another year, another set of chances for you and your book! While I usually focus on authors and publishers in this column, this month, I am the one guilty of committing the errors in DO THIS NOT THAT.”

Amazon has recently updated their Amazon books ads system. Check out this video from Dave Chesson: “And unlike most of their updates, this Amazon book ads update actually has some pretty awesome changes. So, in this video, I will explain all of the changes that have been made to the new Amazon book ads system.”

100 Best Writing Websites: 2019 Edition: from The Write Life and by Dana Sitar: “Whether you’re a novelist, journalist, Ph.D. candidate, entrepreneurial blogger, self-help guru writing a book or some combination of creativity at the intersection of multiple ambitions, you call yourself “a writer.” Whatever kind of writer you are, a blog or online community probably exists to help you succeed. Each year, The Write Life celebrates these vast resources available by releasing a list of the 100 Best Websites for Writers, and we’re excited to do it for the sixth year in a row.”

WITS Throwdown: Putting the “Social” in Social Media by Jenny Hansen: “The real title of this post is How To Put the Social in Social Media Without Losing Your Mind or All Your Free Time. That’s a heavy promise, right? Social media does like to suck up valuable family time, writing time, down time. If you think about it as a big vaccuum that gives nothing back, you WILL be resistant to this whole ‘online social thing.'”

Quote of the Week

indie author

Want to know all of my best social media marketing tips? Get a copy of Social Media Just for Writers.

Social Media Just for Writers 2nd Edition

Well written, well researched – well thought out. This book is a must have!

Ryshia Kennie 

Frances CaballoAuthor of this blogFrances Caballo is an author and social media strategist and manager for writers. She wrote several social media books including 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, and finding new readers. Her clients have included authors of every genre and writers’ conferences. Not sure how you’re doing online? Sign up for her free email course.

Online Book Marketing Strategies for Writers

Indie Author Weekly Update – December 7, 2018

indie author

Welcome to this week’s Indie Author Update. If you want to learn more about book marketing, you came to the right place. You’ll find posts from Dave Chesson, Penny Sansevieri, Anne R. Allen, and others. Plus, there’s a link to this year’s Goodreads Choice Awards winners.

You’ve Finished Your First Novel! What to Do Now: 7 Do’s and Don’ts by Anne R. Allen: “Did you win NaNo? Is it a first novel? Congratulations!!! Only about 3% of people who start novels actually finish, so you’re a major winner right there. You’ve done something spectacular. So break out the bubbly and savor the moment! After that…what comes next?”

How to Define and Describe Your Readership: A Confusing Issue for Nonfiction Book Proposals by Jane Friedman: “If you’re pitching a nonfiction book, at some point, an editor or agent will expect you to describe the readership that your book is intended for. Or, if you’re self-publishing, you’ll need to define this for yourself to market the book properly.”

Self-publishing Success Story: Indie Audiobook is Finalist for Voice Arts Award from the Alliance of Independent Authors and by Brad Borkan: “Recently my audiobook narrator Dennis Kleinman and I had the incredible honor of having the audiobook for When Your Life Depends on It nominated as a finalist in the “Best Audiobook – History” category of the Voice Arts Awards. Here’s how our audiobook came to life, and how it came to be competing for a major prize in Hollywood.”

Boost Your Amazon Book Promotion with Pre-Order Strategies by Penny Sansevieri: “The Amazon pre-order option for KDP authors (Kindle Direct Publishing has really helped level the playing field between traditionally published authors and those who have self-published through KDP. Let’s look at how this can benefit your Amazon book promotion!”

How to Use Top Book Blogs to Build Your Author Brand from BookWorks and by Dave Chesson: “In today’s article on author branding, we’re going to look at how to make use of top book blogs to gain additional momentum for your book at launch, greater exposure to a qualified readership, and an evergreen source of external traffic for your book’s sales page. The importance of seeking as many channels as possible to gain exposure for your book cannot be overstated.”

2018 Goodreads Choice Awards: More than 5 million votes were cast and counted in the 10th Annual Goodreads Choice Awards honoring the year’s best books. See who the winners were.

Quote of the week

indie author

 

Want to know all of my best social media marketing tips? Get a copy of Social Media Just for Writers.

Social Media Just for Writers 2nd Edition

Well written, well researched – well thought out. This book is a must have!

Ryshia Kennie 

Frances CaballoAuthor of this blogFrances Caballo is an author and social media strategist and manager for writers. She wrote several social media books including 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, and finding new readers. Her clients have included authors of every genre and writers’ conferences. Not sure how you’re doing online? Sign up for her free email course.

Online Book Marketing Strategies for Writers