Welcome to another edition of the Indie Author Weekly Update. Please don’t miss David Gaughran’s post on hacks for Amazon categories. Amazon categories can be maddening and David explains how to get the categories you need and want. It’s necessary reading for indie authors.
I also decided to include on this list I wrote for Anne R. Allen’s blog on social media relationships. It’s a topic I’ve covered on my blog but not to this extent. The whole point of social media is socializing and building relationships so I hope you check it out.
How To (Ethically) Hack Amazon Categories by David Gaughran: ” I get so many emails about Amazon categories and keywords that I thought it would be useful to dig into all the opportunities at your fingertips, and clear up some confusion out there too. Useful for me, that is. Now I’ll have something to point people to! Should be useful for you too, even the old timers, because I bet there’s a least one hack in here you didn’t know about, and smart use of the category system can greatly increase your visibility on Amazon — critical for all authors, doubly so if you are in KU.”
Authors: Are You Building Social Media Relationships with Your Readers? from Anne R. Allen’s blog: “Dan Zarrella, author of The Science of Marketing, said in his book, “I’ve long been interested in the idea that engaging in conversation is the single most important function of social media marketing.” He’s right. And so is David Alston, a startup advisor and TEDx speaker. He said this about social media: “The key is to listen, engage, and build relationships.” And Dallas Lawrence of Levick Strategic Communications said: “Monitor, engage, and be transparent; these have always been the keys to success in the digital space.” Need I go on?”
French Bookstore Invites its Instagram Followers to Judge Books by Their Covers from Colossal: “In addition to laying claim to the title of France’s first independent bookstore, Librairie Mollat has carved a unique niche on Instagram with its #bookface portraits. The Bordeaux-based bookstore regularly features photographs of book covers held up in front of perfectly scaled, dressed, and nose-shaped people (presumably, some are customers, though some repeated faces seem to indicate a few photogenic employees). You can see more from Mollat—and perhaps even get your next book recommendation—on Instagram. If you enjoy this, also check out Album Plus Art.”
Turning Your Book into a 24/7 Book Sales Tool by Penny Sansevieri: “Regardless of what type of book you’ve written, books need to work for you. Less than 3% of readers will review a book they’ve finished without any prompting. Meaning that if you don’t ask for a review, you’re likely not to get one. So what’s the solution to get more book reviews? Better book back matter. What does that mean? It means that your About the Author is good, but not great, a list of other books you’ve written is also good, but again probably not great. Your best book marketing goal is to get them to go from the experience of reading your book, to posting a book review or contacting you directly. And in turn, great back matter and a great reader letter will help you get more book sales.”
Interesting to see what book marketing tactics authors were buzzing about at #RWA18. Anything in here surprise you? from BookBub Partners: “At last week’s Romance Writers of America (RWA) Conference 2018 — one of the biggest annual writing conferences in the US — many sessions and panels covered book marketing and sales topics. We gathered fantastic tips from authors, agents, and prolific book marketers, and we’re excited to share them with our readers! From branding to backlist promotions, panelists were buzzing about cross-promotion strategies, creating launch plans, and optimizing advertising campaigns. Here were our top 10 takeaways from RWA 2018.”
Targeting Readers: Audiences Have Evolved & So Should Marketing by Kristen Lamb: “How many times have we been told we should be targeting our readers, audience, and customers? Am I the only one disturbed by this advice? Targeting seems like it should involve a Predator Drone…or at least a trebuchet.”
Quote of the Week
Well written, well researched – well thought out. This book is a must have!
Author of this blog: Frances Caballo is an author and social media strategist and manager for writers. She’s a regular speaker at the San Francisco Writers Conference and a contributing writer at TheBookDesigner.com. Frances 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.
Practical tips for marketing your books on the social web