This week on the Open Book Blog Hop the topic is all about the best way to market our books.
Marketing the books we write seems to be the biggest concern of most writers, whether they are self-published or traditionally published. Unless you are a well known name, even traditionally published authors seem to have to spend a fair bit of their time marketing their books on-line and physically.
My first children’s book, Sir Chocolate and the strawberry cream berries story and cookbook was published into a social media vacuum in August 2016. As it was my first book, it gained a fair amount of interest from family and friends but I knew when I published the second book, that I had to look further for a market.
I started looking into social media. Firstly, I created a Facebook account and that was hilarious. I called it Sir Chocolate and I got a lot of requests for friendship by some rather interesting characters including a platoon of USA military personnel, according to their profiles in any event. I quickly changed it to Robbie Cheadle and my sister showed me how to create a page called Sir Chocolate Books which worked much better.
I created a twitter account and spent a bit of time learning how to use twitter and finding other authors and reading their tweets. I soon realised that all the authors had blogs. What was a blog? I followed a number of the links and saw that WP was a popular choice for these “blogs”. I spend the whole of one Sunday finding WP and setting up my blog step-by-painful-step.
I was very lucky with my blog. I used the search tool to look for other authors and quickly came across Smorgasbord, run by the amazing Sally Cronin. I started following her posts and reading and commenting as I saw other people doing. Sally came over and had a look at my blog and kindly shared one of my posts. It was a Christmas post about how to make a red robin out of fondant. I went over to her blog and thanked her and followed all the links to the bloggers who had commented on her post. I read and commented on a few of their posts and followed them all. That is how I became involved in the amazing writing and blogging community that is my mainstay in this strange social media world. Blogging is different to other social media, it is interactive and you learn a whole lot of fascinating and useful things. You find book reviews that lead you to fantastic new writers and their books and discover historical, scientific and natural wonders shared by bloggers all over the world.
My blog is the marketing tool I use the most. I try not to use it to post to many specially book promotional posts. I like to participate in writing prompts and meet other participants. My books are along the sidebar of my blogs so people who like my writing can find them if they want to.
Another thing I do quite often is write guest posts. These are usually about some historical event or circumstance that I have found interesting or which has prompted a piece of writing. The bit about my books is usually at the end and people can continue to read it if they are interested in it or just read the actual article.
I am not a great marketer, but I do let people know I have books and I try to support my fellow authors as much as possible because I like to and because I think that you need to offer visitors to your social media variety and insights into other peoples books and writing. It is a bit like the marketing psychology that is used in shopping malls when stores that sell similar products are grouped together. You go to a certain section of the mall to buy shoes and another to buy books. In that one place you get to look around and make a selection from all the different products that are on offer.
How to other authors market their books? You can find out here:
- Link your blog to this hop.
- Notify your following that you are participating in this blog hop.
- Promise to visit/leave a comment on all participants’ blogs.
- Tweet/or share each person’s blog post. Use #OpenBook when tweeting.
- Put a banner on your blog that you are participating.