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.”

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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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Want in on a secret? Email marketing rocks!

Rock your readers' world with email marketingWould you like to know a secret? One that social media managers might not freely reveal?

Here it is: Email marketing is in some ways more effective than social media.

Really? Let me backtrack a bit.

Admittedly, they are two different animals. If you send too many emails to your list or the information isn’t relevant to your audience, you’ll lose your subscribers fast.

But, if you send promos, freebies, and relevant information, they will love every email you send.

Social media can refer traffic – it certainly sends traffic to my website. But what social media is best at is engagement. By its very nature social media is social so if you’re not making time in your day to socialize with your readers, well, you’ll losing out on a huge benefit of the social platforms.

Social media is best at engagement - email marketing at traffic referralClick To Tweet

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Author’s Guide to Email Marketing plus 3 Best Practices

Author's Guide to Email Marketing plus 3 Best PracticesThere’s a piece of advice that authors everywhere are receiving that you can’t ignore: start your email marketing list and grow it.

As you can tell from the abundance of blog posts on this topic, I’m not the only one who agrees with this advice.

Moreover, email is the fastest, cheapest, most powerful way to engage with your readers at scale. No other service (not even social media) is as personal as email, and if done right, you’ll sell way more books through email than you could any other way. Tom Morkes

As effective as social media is for engaging with your readers – not to mention discoverability – there’s nothing that quite compares to a robust email marketing list.

There’s nothing that quite compares to a robust email list Click To Tweet

Right about now you probably think that it’s an excellent piece of advice but just how can you accomplish this goal? That’s exactly what this post is about so lean back, take a sip of your coffee, tea, or tequila (or bourbon or wine), and keep reading.

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Indie Author Weekly Roundup September 23, 2016

9-23-16-indie-author-updatesThis week’s Indie Author Weekly Roundup includes six posts. You see, I just couldn’t cut the list any more. Each post is chock-full of information that indie authors need to know to be successful in today’s market. And that is the purpose of this blog; to help you attain your goals.

On another note, if you missed Wednesday’s webinar with Joanna Penn, well, you missed a real treat. She revealed great tips that have helped to fuel her success. We also discussed her new course, How to Write a Novel. I’ve reviewed the course and plan to use it when I return to my novel. it’s awesome.

My next webinar will feature Joel Friedlander. The date for that webinar is October 4.

Indie Author Updates

Unusual Ways to Promote Your Book from Alliance of Independent Authors: “Each month we step away from mainstream marketing ideas and highlight creative, fun and sometimes downright wacky ideas that our members have dreamed up to help promote their self-published books to more readers. Here’s September’s top tips, with thanks to all the authors named (and the one who prefers to remain anonymous) for generously allowing us to share them here.”

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Indie Author Weekly Roundup – August 19, 2016

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I spent last week in Monterey and normally I have a lovely time in this coastal community where I was born but the smoke-filled air was a constant reminder of the dangers of the Soberanes Fire in Big Sur and Carmel Valley. There are numerous fires in California right now and we’re constantly reminded of the danger as dry, brown hills cover the state and surround my community. I can only hope that the fire crews remain safe, no more lives are lost, and that the winter brings plenty of rain. I hope you’re having a safe summer. Oh yeah; I hope you enjoy this week’s Indie Author Weekly Roundup too!


Working With Cover and Interior Designers from Joel Friedlander and by Jennie Nash: “Almost every publishing professional advising self-publishers says the same thing: focus on editing and cover design. Those are the two most important elements of your book, the ones that will make the biggest difference in how your book is re-ceived and how it will sell. We’ve already discussed how working with a good editor can help make or break your book, so now let’s take a look at the importance of good design, both inside and out.”

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