How Big Should Your Author Platform Be?

When it comes to a writer’s social media following, how much is enough?

How Big Should Your Author Platform Be?Unless we’re a big name A-list author, publishers want us to have a humongous platform from which to sell books. They expect us to have a large following. Even though the publisher will make some effort to sell our books, this largely falls on us. And if we self-publish, the marketing and promotion of our books is all up to us. We need a platform to do this, the bigger the better…  read more>>

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Put the Reader First or Risk Losing Them

Write for your audience, and don’t try to impress others with your skill

Put the Reader First or Risk Losing ThemI recently read a nonfiction book. My assessment was that the author wrote to impress more than to educate. Though I did learn from her words, I’d have gained much more had she gotten out of the way and put me, the reader, first. I didn’t care how educated she was or about her sometimes sassy style. I wanted her to teach me.

Whatever we’write, we need to put the reader first and…  read more>>

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How to Build a Fan Base

Every writer needs avid supporters to help get the word out about his or her books

How to Build a Fan BaseWhen it comes to marketing our book we need a group of loyal followers. They are apt to buy our books and will be excited to tell others about them. We need a platform.

Most writers cringe at the word platform. That’s probably why some people use other words. One person says tribe and another prefers community, while others say street team. I prefer the word fans, which is short for fanatic. Yes… read more>>

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Should You Use Video to Grow Your Platform?

Video may be the next step in connecting and engaging with an audience

Should You Use Video to Grow Your Platform?With advances in technology, and the power residing on every smartphone, it has never been easier to record a video and start a vlog. A vlog is a video blog. I’m a huge proponent of blogging and in the past tried the audio version of that: podcasting.

Moving a blog to video is the next evolution in communicating with our audience. Some people, such as Michael Hyatt… read more>>

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How Building a Platform Almost Ruined My Writing Career

The more I focused on platform building, the less I enjoyed writing. I almost quit.

How Building a Platform Almost Ruined My Writing CareerA few years ago, when I was still looking for an agent, I received some unexpected feedback. The agent liked me and my writing. He thought my book had merit. But despite all that he chose not to represent me. His reason was direct: “You have no platform.” Ouch!

He didn’t say, “Your platform isn’t big enough,” “We want to see a bigger following,” or even “Your platform is too small”…  read more>>

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Avoiding a Spectacular Podcast Crash

Avoiding a Spectacular Podcast CrashTwo weeks ago we talked about the benefits of podcasting to grow an audience for our books. Then we discussed possible downsides of podcasting and how podcasting isn’t right for everyone. Today we’ll look at one more consideration: the crash and burn.

I listen to a lot of podcasts. Some are monthly, others twice a month or weekly, and a few are more often. Three had epic fails… read more>>

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My Experience With Podcasting

My Experience With PodcastingLast week I mentioned four benefits of having an author podcast to build our platform. The reasons are compelling. But before jumping in, we need to consider if podcasting makes sense for us.

I was an early adopter of podcasting. Though I don’t have the dates, it was shortly after I started blogging, so around 2009 or 2010. Those podcasts are no longer online so I can’t verify when…  read more>>

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The Power of Podcasting: Four Reasons to Have an Author Podcast

The Power of Podcasting: Four Reasons to Have an Author PodcastIt seems people are jumping on the podcasting bandwagon. They want to grow their audience and build their platform in order to sell their books (or whatever other product or service they have to offer).

This makes sense. Look at the recent surge of interest in audiobooks, with people who read books by listening to a recording. They do this during their work commute, as they exercise, or when they attend to…  read more

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3 Ways to Create Top of Mind Awareness

3 Ways to Create Top of Mind AwarenessMarketing can have one of two goals: make sales or create awareness. Although marketing can do both of these, it will only do one well.

This post will discuss ways to create awareness – and when done right, top-of-mind awareness. That is, having our author brand be what a reader first thinks of when he or she considers what book to read next. Awareness, which some would call branding, is built…  read more>>

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5 Benefits of Using Online Advertising to Sell Books

With an online ad, a book sale is one click away

5 Benefits of Using Online Advertising to Sell Books

I once shared columnist Andrew Brenneman’s thoughts on the benefits of print advertising. It is, by the way, a compelling list that includes things we take for granted or overlook. Print advertising is the medium of choice to meet certain marketing objectives.

He also shares the benefits of online advertising. Consider these when marketing your book using…  read more>>