Category Archives: Promo Tips

Blogging as a Writer

Scrabble pieces spell out 'blog' and the post title, "Blogging as a Writer" is superimposed on the top.

by Elizabeth S. Craig, @elizabethscraig

My first blog post was in August of 2008.  Along the way, I’ve tweaked the content and changed from Blogger to WordPress.  I’ve also played with the number of posts I run a week.  Aside from that, the blog is pretty much the same as it was nine years ago.

But along the way, I’ve seen lots of changes: some writers who used to blog no longer do.  Some folks never started. Some rarely post at all.  Which leads me to this post.  :)   Should writers blog?  If you decide to blog, how do you keep it up?  And how do you get a blog started?

Why should you consider blogging?

One big reason why I like blogging is because I bring traffic to my website (which also lists my books).  As Belinda Griffin put it in her article, “10 Rock-Solid Reasons Why Every Indie Author Needs an Author Blog“:

Regularly updated websites, ie ones with a blog, are crawled more often by search engines and will appear higher up in search engine results, meaning a website with a blog is more likely to be found by someone searching using Google. Continue reading Blogging as a Writer

Writing a Better Reader Newsletter

Desktop picture showing a computer, mouse, keyboard, speaker, and the post title, "Writing a Better Reader Newsletter" superimposed on the top.

by Elizabeth S. Craig, @elizabethscraig

I’ve mentioned before that I always feel a little apologetic when I send a newsletter to readers. I’m so inundated by emails that the idea of wanting more emails seems impossible to me.  But that’s just the thing we need to remember: readers do want to receive our newsletter.  That’s why they signed up for them.

I only send my newsletters when I have a release, which means that I’m sending a newsletter out about three times a year.  My newsletter include buy-links for the new book, a few recipes (I don’t enjoy cooking, but I like passing along easy recipes), and updates on my life and what I’m working on now.

I’m always on the lookout for ways to make my newsletter better. I came across three articles on the same day and saved all of them for future use since each one had at least one helpful takeaway.  I thought I’d pass the information along here in case it helps others. Continue reading Writing a Better Reader Newsletter

Finding Silver Linings in Goodreads Giveaway Changes, and 3 Alternatives

by David Wogahn, @wogahn

It seems like indie authors are under siege. First Pronoun, the free eBook distribution service, closed. Then Goodreads announced their free paperback giveaway promotion tool will no longer be free (as of tomorrow, January 9).

I know how upset some authors are about the latter change. But I imagine there are other groups of authors and publishers who see a silver lining.

  1. Producing a quality paperback is more expensive than publishing in eBook format. For those self-publishers who publish in eBook format only, and who want to get in front of the largest audience of avid readers in the world, a high bar has now been lowered.
  2. One of the arguments in favor of KDP Select is being able to give your Kindle eBook away for free, ostensibly to help encourage reviews and build your audience. The new Goodreads program has no such requirement, only that your book is available on the KDP publishing platform.
  1. The program seems to have lost its effectiveness for some people. As shared with The Verge by Lesley Conner of Apex Publications, “We aren’t going to spend the small marketing budget we have on a service that we’ve already noticed isn’t that effective.”

A couple of years ago I read about one self-publisher’s giveaway strategy in the Independent Book Publishers Association Independent magazine: offer one book and do this continuously, well after the release date. Goodreads would give an offer like this the same marketing push as a Giveaway for a new release offering multiple copies.

Could this be a contributor to the ineffectiveness cited by Apex Publications and many others? I think so and I doubt it was Goodreads’ intention that the program be used this way.

2 reasons why I am not concerned

Continue reading Finding Silver Linings in Goodreads Giveaway Changes, and 3 Alternatives

Creating ‘Best of 2017 Tweets’ Posts

Man standing on mountain top with arms stretched out and post title, "Creating 'Best of 2017 Tweets' Posts" is superimposed on the top.

by Elizabeth S. Craig, @elizabethscraig

I posted on this last year, but I thought it was worth another mention.  If you’re on Twitter, it’s pretty easy to find your best-performing tweets of the year and retweet them (I like to add a hashtag like ‘TopTweets2017′).

There are a few good things about doing this.  For one,  you can revisit content that’s proven popular for your followers on Twitter.  For another, if you share other authors’ posts, it gives you the opportunity to highlight their content again, providing networking, along with goodwill.  It can also be nice to stay active on social media during the holidays without being constantly online…simply schedule your top tweets using a service like Hootsuite or Buffer. Continue reading Creating ‘Best of 2017 Tweets’ Posts

Why You Need an Author Tagline

Dogwood flowers frame an empty notepad and pen with the post title, 'Why You Need an Author Tagline by Laina Turner' superimposed on the photo.

by Laina Turner, @laina_turner

I went to a writers conference years ago, and a panelist was talking about marketing. He said, many great writers never enjoy the chance to earn a living as an author because no one knows how great their books are. They think if they write an amazing book people will buy it, so they don’t put time and effort into marketing.

While writing a good book is a huge part of selling it books won’t sell if the reader doesn’t know it exists. You have to promote what you write.

It’s the business side of authoring.

There are plenty of readers for everyone, but there’s no denying it’s stiff competition. You must make a good first impression and hook potential readers in the split second you have their attention. There are many ways to do that, but today we’re going to talk about the author tagline. Continue reading Why You Need an Author Tagline