|My New Business Card|
We click because we think we've written the next bestseller (if you don't think that about your book then why did you publish it?) but we can't figure out how to let people know.
Family and friends, co-workers, Facebook acquaintances, these are all great first steps, but unless you are already famous, you simply don't know enough people for Amazon to notice. Millions, maybe billions, of people flock to Amazon. They buy books, but how do they know your book exists? If it's not on the charts, they won't, unless someone tells them.
Word of mouth is one of the best marketing tools a writer can have, so every new reader puts you one step closer to your goal. Most readers may be surprised to know this, but even the simplest mention of your book (assuming they enjoyed it) sends the author into orbit and makes him or her that much more dedicated to writing something new. Writers are sensitive by nature. We crave feedback. Readers are our lifeblood. They are what make us sit for countless hours driving ourselves crazy for just the right way to make that next sentence pop (that's how novels are born -- one sentence at a time).
Every writer should have a website -- somewhere people can go to get all the information they need about you and your books. Provide an easy way for people to contact you. Facebook is also one of the fundamentals. An author needs not just a personal Facebook profile, but a Facebook Page (the business version of Facebook). Then there's Twitter, Google+, Goodreads, LinkedIn, Pinterest, the list goes on and on.
Over the last few days I came to realize I've been overlooking another basic promotion tool. One of the most basic, in fact. A tool almost as old as business itself. What is it you ask? A simple business card. Yep, I've been trying to sell books since 2012 and have never had a business card. I corrected that this morning thanks to the ease of creating almost any promotional item on VistaPrint. The hard part is coming up with something catchy, which I hope I accomplished.
There is no magic bullet that will rocket your book to the top of the charts. Writing is an art. Marketing is pure business.
What is your marketing strategy?
* * *
Carl Purdon is the author of The Night Train, Norton Road, and Blinders. He can be found most days on Facebook and Twitter.