Indie Author Weekly Update – December 22, 2017

Indie Author Weekly Update

Today’s Indie Author Weekly Update contains a potpourri of topics and bloggers. Publicity, Twitter threads, and book marketing strategies are just some of the topics covered. Enjoy them all!

Don’t Get Rolled by Bad Publicity from Writer Unboxed and by Porter Anderson: “If the answer from your potential or existing publicist/PR person/press agent is no (“office secret,” “tricks of the trade,” “private information”), run away. They can withhold those journalist’s contact info from you. In fact, I’d prefer they did, for the sake of my inbox. But they need to tell you who’s getting the paper goods and why.”

On email optins: They are the lifeblood of your business as an author. From Shawn Manaher and Book Marketing Tools: “Welcome to the 142nd episode of The Author HangoutIn this episode, Shawn Manager explores what it takes to make the perfect optin, to get people onto your mailing list. Nearly every guest on The Author Hangout has mentioned the importance of mailing lists, and the optin is the make or break moment for your mailing list.”

Twitter officially launches ‘threads,’ a new feature for easily posting tweetstorms from Tech Crunch: “Twitter today is announcing the launch of a new feature that will allow people to more easily post tweetstorms – that is, those series of connected tweets that have grown to become a popular workaround for getting past Twitter’s character count limitation in order to share longer thoughts. The company confirmed last month it was testing the feature – which it’s now calling “threads” – across its iOS and Android apps.”

18 Rock Solid Book Marketing Strategies for 2018 from Penny Sansevieri: “We all want to be better at book marketing and we all want to sell more books. The problem is, it often feels like book marketing strategies are changing all the time and how is an eager author supposed to keep up with that? The reason for this article is to not only share some insight into marketing in the new year, but give you tips for long-term success, not just will work in January. The book marketing ideas I’m sharing in this article, are geared to success the whole year through, and I hope you’ll use all (or as many of these) as you can!”

How to Use Facebook’s New Snooze Feature from Lifehacker: “This week Facebook rolled out a new Snooze feature that allows you to essentially temporarily mute people or pages in your feed.”

A Look Back at 2017 Publishing Headlines: 5 Issues Raised for Authors by Jane Friedman: “At the end of November 2017, Barnes & Noble released their latest earnings report. The news was entirely predictable: the store’s losses grew, driven by a 6.3 percent decline in comparable store sales against last year. (Absence of a new Harry Potter book makes up half of that decline.) The declines have been going on for six or seven quarters now, with more declines expected. Still, B&N has been meeting its profit goals as a result of cost cutting.”

Bonus Items

Award and Content Ratings by the Alliance of Independent Authors: “ALLi is willing to work with any service that wants to improve its offerings and bring them in line with current best practice for authors services. Contact the Watchdog Desk at any time if you would like to inform us about a contest or award, or discuss a rating. Please use the form on this page.”

Writer Emergency Pack: “Writer Emergency Pack is your portable tool for story resuscitation (or simply creativity rejuvenation). Each pack contains 26 illustrated idea cards, 25 detail cards with helpful suggestions and specific tips, and instructions for individuals and class use, plus a bonus story game.”

Quote of the Week

Burnays quote

 


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

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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 – 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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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.”

[Read more…]

Indie Author Weekly Update – September 29, 2017

Indie Author Weekly Update

This week’s Indie Author Update includes posts from Adam Connell, Joanna Penn,  Ali Luke, Buffer, and Writers in the Storm. I hope you enjoy the selections.

Well, we are firmly into fall, my favorite season. How does your writing change with the seasons? I’d love to know!


Indie Author Updates

How To Launch Your Own Facebook Group And Get Loyal Fans  from Adam Connell: “Facebook groups are powerful. They’re a perfect place to start real conversations about things that matter to you. And because your audience members are already on Facebook (Facebook addiction is a real thing, people), they are far more likely to engage with you and your brand in Facebook groups than they are on your blog. With Facebook Live, you can now do live training right inside of your group.”

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Indie Author Weekly Update – August 25, 2017

Indie Author Weekly Update

Today’s Indie Author Weekly Update includes posts from Jane Friedman, David Baer, Hugh Howey, Social Media Examiner, and the Alliance of Independent Authors. Topics range from Facebook to email marketing to tools for writers.

The eclipse is over and summer is nearing its end. What are your goals for the fall? Whatever they might be, I with you the best with your writing.

23 Powerful Ways To Connect With Your Audience on SocialMedia from David Baer: “Perhaps you’ve suffered from thinking “Who cares what I had for breakfast?” – or maybe you’ve just wanted to retain a sense of privacy and not share the small details of your life with the world.”

Writing Insights Part One: Becoming a Writer from Hugh Howey: “I started writing my first novel when I was twelve years old. I was thirty-three when I completed my first rough draft. That’s twenty years of wanting to do something and not knowing how. Twenty years of failure and frustrations and giving up. A big part of the problem is that I didn’t know what I didn’t know. I didn’t know which questions to ask, much less who might have the answers.”

How to Set Up a Creative Facebook Cover Video from Social Media Examiner: “When users visit your page, your Facebook cover photo is one of the first things they’ll notice. For new visitors, your cover photo can help represent your brand and portray your story in just a few seconds. It only makes sense that a short video can accomplish this better than a still photo.”

Best Tools of the Self-Publishing Trade: Running An Author Business from Alliance of Independent Authors: “What tool is indispensable when it comes to running your author business? Jay Artale consulted with ALLi members to find out the writing and self-publishing tools they couldn’t do without. Here’s her roundup of the software, tools, and services they use and recommend.”

MailChimp Alternatives for Authors from Jane Friedman: “When authors ask me for marketing advice, one of my first questions for them is: “Do you have a mailing list?” Too often, the author will say no. So my first piece of advice tends to be: Sign up to MailChimp and set up your mailing list.”

5 Ways to Use Facebook Pinned Posts to Hook Fans from Chris Syme: “Facebook pinned posts are the most underused piece of real estate on your Facebook page. They have the ability to entice people to walk in your door. But let’s start with why. It’s all about the numbers.

Quote of the Week

Yehoshua

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

Avoid Social Media Time Suck

Get a free copy of Avoid Social Media Time Suck from Smashwords!

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Indie Author Weekly Update – July 28, 2017

Indie Author Weekly Update

This week’s Indie Author Update includes posts from Chris Well, Penny Sansevieri, Buffer, Social Media Examiner, Book Riot, and Authority Pub. Topics range from email lists to using Facebook as a substitute for a book club to Amazon ads. The topics are diverse this week.

Meanwhile, I hope you’re enjoying the summer and finding pockets of inspiration wherever you are.


18 Experts: Why Every Author Needs an Email by Chris Well: “Despite all the tools available for promoting your books and building your author presence online, it would be a mistake to discount the value of a healthy email list. Building a list of email subscribers allows you to engage with your readers, drive new book sales, and insure your author platform against inevitable changes in search engines and social networks. Don’t believe me? Here are 18 influencers–including authors, bloggers, podcasters, and other online teachers–who explain why you need an email list.”

[Read more…]

Secrets of Successful Book Launches with Howard VanEs

In this webinar, as part of my Conversations with Frances series, I interviewed Howard VanEs about successful book launches. A master at selling books, Howard shared some of his best strategies.

Here are some notes from our conversation:

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Blockbuster Author Kevin Tumlinson Reveals His Writing and Book Marketing Secrets

Kevin TumlinsonSeveral months ago I used Draft2Digital to convert one of my books to an ePub and distribute it to online book retailers. I was impressed by the customer service I experienced and how easy the staff made the entire process for me.

Then, I recalled hearing Kevin Tumlinson of Draft2Digital speak on Joanna Penn’s podcast about eight months ago and decided to invite him to join my Conversations with Frances webinar series.

Earlier this month I interviewed Kevin Tumlinson, marketing director for Draft2Digital and a bestselling author. We had a wide-ranging conversation about Draft2Digital and Kevin’s writing and book marketing tips. Here are some of the points we covered:

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5 Tools Every Indie Author Should Use

5 Tools Indie Authors Should UseWhen I first started using social media, confusion quickly set it.

I read a lot of blog posts and tried every application I learned about. I signed up for more than I needed and registered for apps before they were even available. Some that come to mind are Strawberry Jam and BrandBuilder and its precursor, none of which exist today. I tried out SocialBro, and it doesn’t exist today either.

In fact, sometimes I write about apps, and six months later, well, they’re kaput! It’s an embarrassing at times and can get frustrating.

There are some applications that I know aren’t going to abandon me, and so today I am taking the risk of suggesting that there are five tools that indie authors can’t be without.

Ready to see which ones they are?

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How to Get Going with MailChimp and Email Marketing

A MailChimp Primer for AuthorsEverywhere on the blogosphere writers are hearing the admonishment, “Start an email marketing program.”

Publishers, the experts tell you, want to know that you have an email list. Even if you’re an Indie author and intend to be indie as long as you can breathe, an email list is important to your marketing efforts.

So it’s loud and clear that you need an email list, right? But did you ever notice that there’s little advice about which programs are better and how to use them? Well, I intend to clear that up today.

There are several email marketing programs available but the two most popular ones are MailChimp and AWeber. The pricing plans are similar, however, with MailChimp you can start with a free plan.

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