Free Book Promotions, Testing Book Ideas and Social Media for Writers

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This week’s roundup is truly a wild mix of posts. I’ve included an article on the best book promotion sites, on whether lowering book prices is a good idea and another one on how to test market your book idea. In the social media for writers arena, there is a wonderful post from HubSpot on how to optimize your blog and a list of what mistakes you should never make on social media. I hope you enjoy them as much as I did.

Top 10 Free Book Promotion Sites from Angie’s Diary: First and most important is the debate about paid for and free sites. All the websites in my top ten are free to use – but that doesn’t mean paid for sites aren’t worth considering. Some offer a lot for quite a small initial outlay. I’ve considered joining the AuthorMarketing Club, for example, as it’s recommended by Joanna Penn and helps save time by extending your author platform to a wealth of other sites. They advertise ‘Free book marketing resources and tools’ but to really benefit you need to consider their premium service. Another site I’ve looked at is the Independent Author Network, which is very affordable and claims that “over 10,000 readers visit IAN each day to find great books by our talented authors.”

25 Pieces of Advice You Need to Build an Awesome Facebook Page from SteamFeed: During the last couple of months we’ve all read a steady stream of complaints about Facebook’s most recent changes and how they affect business Pages. Yet anyone who pays close attention to what’s happening at Facebook shouldn’t be terribly surprised.

Who’s Afraid of Very Cheap Books? from Let’s Get Visible: A common meme in publishing is that cheap books are destroying the world or literature, and that low prices are undermining the viability of publishing or writers’ ability to make a living. I’ve long thought this position is nonsense – a narrative which plays on misplaced fears of change and a confusion of price and value, which is also based on flawed assumptions and analog, zero-sum thinking. And, if anything, the opposite is true.

15 Blog Optimization Stats from HubSpot: You’ve probably heard many times before that if you want to create and sustain a successful blog, there’s a lot you need to do. You’ve got to create exceptional content. You’ve got to optimize your posts for search engines. You also have to create catchy titles, inspire social shares, and determine the best times for publishing your posts, among a thousand other things.

10 Social Media Mistakes You’re Probably Making from All Twitter: This visual from Daily Genius proposes 10 social media mistakes that you’re probably making.

10 Ways to Test Market Your Nonfiction Book Idea Before You Publish fromThe Book Designer: Writing and publishing a full-length nonfiction manuscript represents a big commitment in time and effort, let alone money. The fear that the book may flop, meaning never sell, stops many aspiring authors in their tracks. But it shouldn’t.

 



About the Author: Frances Caballo is a social media manager for writers and author of Avoid Social Media Time Suck: A Blueprint for Writers to Create Online Buzz for Their Books and Still Have Time to Write, Social Media Just for Writers: The Best Online Marketing Tips for Selling Your Books and Blogging Just for Writers. Presently, she is the Social Media Manager for theWomen’s National Book Association-SF Chapter, the San Francisco Writers Conference, and theBay Area Independent Publishers Association. You can find her on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, and Google+.

Practical Tips for Marketing Your Books on the Social Web

 

 

Photo credit: Nicole Yeary via photopin cc

Curation, Kickstarter, Getting Visible and Hummingbird

5-30-14 Frances Caballo

This week’s Roundup includes a potpourri of articles from different corners of the blogosphere. Search Engine Watch posted a great article on content curation tools while MemeBurn did an excellent job of explaining Google’s changes to its algorithm. In between, you’ll find a post by Social Media Revolver, Copyblogger and David Gaughran. I hope you enjoy these!

26 Free (or Free-to-Try) Content Curation Tools from Search Engine Watch: Content is still king, but it isn’t always practical or cost effective for marketers to produce brand-new, meaty, thought-leadership level content pieces on a regular basis. That’s where curating content can come in handy.

NoiseTrade: Build Audience While Boosting Your Mailing List from Let’s Get Visible: What if I told you there was a cool new way to share your work with the world that could help you build audience, boost your mailing list, and make money at the same time?

A Warts-and-All Guide to Kickstarter: What Works and What Doesn’t (Plus Where We Royally Screwed Up) from Copyblogger: These are the lessons we’ve learned so far while promoting our own in-progress Kickstarter campaign. It’s been very successful … but that’s happened in spite of some serious blunders on our part.

25 Quick Tips How To Use YouTube, Vine, Instagram, Reddit and Flickr In Your Marketing from Social Media Revolver: If you are thinking about adding videos to enhance the visibility of your website, then you have an array of options to choose from.

Memeburn presents: the ultimate guide to promoting your content online from MemeBurn: With the release of Google’s Hummingbird came a great change in the world of SEO. Although many digital agents consider that the changes were to be expected, it has become quite difficult for businesses to promote themselves online. The SEO landscape is not the same as it was ten years ago, and this basically means that companies have to work harder, and invest more time and money in expanding their online credibility. The Hummingbird and Panda algorithms love high-quality, compelling content that truly adds value to the World Wide Web.

 

About the Author: Frances Caballo is a social media manager for writers and author of Avoid Social Media Time Suck: A Blueprint for Writers to Create Online Buzz for Their Books and Still Have Time to Write, Social Media Just for Writers: The Best Online Marketing Tips for Selling Your Books and Blogging Just for Writers. Presently, she is the Social Media Manager for theWomen’s National Book Association-SF Chapter, the San Francisco Writers Conference, and theBay Area Independent Publishers Association. You can find her on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, and Google+.

Practical Tips for Marketing Your Books on the Social Web

 

 

Photo credit: TheSeafarer via photopin cc

Queries, Press Releases, MindMaps & Email Marketing for Writers

Queries, Press Releases, MindMaps & Email Marketing for Writers

I am veering slightly from my normal compilation of social media-related posts because the information presented in my selections below are important for writers. Let’s start with email marketing: every author needs to start using MailChimp, ConstantContact, AWeber or some email marketing program and growing a list. Once you have one, you’ll realize how easy it is to maintain it and how wonderful it is in connecting with your readers. I also liked Kristen Lamb’s blog about offline promotion. I can sometimes neglect that part of my marketing plan so her post served as a good reminder. Jane Friedman’s post about query letters is comprehensive and outstanding. These are the types of posts we love to read, right? I’m also intrigued by mind mapping. Thanks to my friend and colleague, Nina Amir, I’m finally getting the hang of a mindmap tool I use and am using it to plan my next book. I hope you enjoy the articles by Roger Parker and David Gaughran.

5 Things I Wish Everyone Knew About Email Marketing from Social Media Today: Email marketing professionals often battle misconceptions, misunderstandings and misanthropy in explaining what we do and why we do it. From defending our email campaigns, to the CFO who thinks we “send free letters,” to convincing our moms that we aren’t those evil spammers, it seems the email marketer is often maligned from every side.

What Makes a Media Release Effective from Kristen Lamb’s Blog: What makes a media release effective? It gets you the attention you’re looking for. A great media release puts cheeks in the seats, gets coverage, gets the interview. It’s that simple.

15 Ways To Improve KDP – Progress Report from Let’s Get Visible: The London Book Fair is underway again which makes it a perfect time to review the list of suggestions I presented to KDP last year. As regular readers will know, I crowd-sourced a list of feature requests, bug fixes, and common problems via my blog and the most popular self-publisher hangout, Kboards. The KDP reps at the Fair spent a great deal of time going through your list of suggestions. They asked for clarification at various points and I was able to follow up with them by email afterwards. At the same time, a parallel effort led by Marie Force, Laura Florand, and Diana Peterfreund presented a similar list of suggestions at NINC in October last year. There were probably more such efforts too.

MindMapping Shortcuts for Writing a Book from Published & Profitable: Map Parts save time by providing a structure for your book research and planning. Consistency: Map Parts help ensure you include all necessary information when analyzing competing books and creating a table of contents. Ease of use: It takes just seconds to create a map part and add it to the Map Parts task pane, accessible from the lower right of the MindManager screen. Once created, Map Parts can be easily added, by dragging and dropping, into the Content Dashboard map you’re currently working on.

The Complete Guide to Query Letters that Get Manuscript Requests from Jane Friedman: The query is so much of a sales piece that you should be able to write it without having written a single word of the manuscript. For some writers, it represents a completely different way of thinking about your book—it means thinking about your work as a marketable commodity. To think of your book as a product, you need to have some distance to see its salable qualities.

 

About the Author: Frances Caballo is a social media manager for writers and author of Avoid Social Media Time Suck: A Blueprint for Writers to Create Online Buzz for Their Books and Still Have Time to Write, Social Media Just for Writers: The Best Online Marketing Tips for Selling Your Books and Blogging Just for Writers. Presently, she is the Social Media Manager for theWomen’s National Book Association-SF Chapter, the San Francisco Writers Conference, and theBay Area Independent Publishers Association. You can find her on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, and Google+.

Practical Tips for Marketing Your Books on the Social Web

Photo credit: RLHyde via photopin cc

3 Essential Tools for Writers: Marketing, Twitter and Blogging

You write your book, find a cover designer and graphic artist, and send that novel or anthology out into the world. But wait, now you have to market it. And use Twitter. Oh, yeah, you have to start blogging too. If you are still learning how to maximize social media to broaden your readership, then these posts on marketing, Twitter and blogging are essential reading. Besides, they’re written by some great pros in the industry. Enjoy them!

The Hidden Secrets of Marketing from State of Digital: Definitely the Pandora’s box opened by Edward Snowden about the massive espionage, that the NSA did of millions of citizens around the world, has been – and will be for many months – one of the hottest news, and it has ironically made more popular among the public the (bad) practices that the big Internet companies (Google, Facebook, et al) follow regarding the use of our private data.

11 Web Marketing and Social Media Trends That Will Shape 2014 from Social Media Today: Social Media allows small businesses to leverage technology to even the playing field with bigger brands and companies. In 2014, some of the trends we saw in 2013 will continue to rise while others will fall. But it all comes down to how you communicate with your customers, how you leverage relationships, and of course how you share GREAT content.

If You Don’t Enjoy Marketing, You’re Doing It Wrong from Let’s Get Visible: Sometimes marketing can seem like a Sisyphean task. There’s always something you could do to promote your work, and there’s never enough hours in the day. Many writers are already hard-pressed with demands from the rest of their lives and have to battle hard to carve out writing time. The pressure to promote squeezes that precious writing time even further.

How to Use Twitter’s New Timelines from Business to Community: Twitter’s new timeline feature gives users more control over how their tweets are organized and offers some creative alternatives to simply posting to your feed and watching your tweets quickly disappear into the swirling current of handles and hashtags.

8 Smart Tips to Maximize Your Blog Content from Positively Peg: Creating a great article for your blog is a long process and it takes time to craft the perfect headline, write an interesting article and then find a photo. Many bloggers stop working once they hit publish and wonder why no one is coming to their blog or sharing. Cross promoting your blog content across social media platforms sounds complicated but once you put it into your routine, you’ll find that it’s worth the effort.

 

socialmediaforwritersAbout the Author: Frances Caballo is a social media manager for writers and author of Social Media Just for Writers: The Best Online Marketing Tips for Selling Your Books and Blogging Just for Writers. Presently, she is the Social Media Manager for the Women’s National Book Association-SF Chapterthe San Francisco Writers Conference, and the Bay Area Independent Publishers Association. You can find her on FacebookTwitterLinkedInPinterest, and Google+. 

 

 

Self-Publishing Scandal, Brand Yourself & Writing Tips

Fall Leaves

It’s fall and in Northern California that means we have cool mornings and evenings, and warm afternoons with the temperature settling well into the 70s. There’s just a hint of winter in the cool breeze. With this type of weather it’s difficult to stay ind

Bloomsbury Seeks Deal With Author Solutions from Let’s Get Visible by David Gaughran: The publishing world has been turned upside down by ebooks and self-publishing. All the old middlemen – agents, publishers, distributors, retailers – are scrambling to reinvent themselves, trying to remain relevant in a digital world. Self-publishing is big business. By my estimates, self-publishers have captured 30% of the US e-book market. And everyone wants a slice. Unfortunately, many organizations are prepared to do pretty much anything to make sure they get theirs.

Pixar’s 22 Rules of Storytelling from BookBaby Blog by Chris Robley: The animation studio Pixar has produced so many successful films, not because those films are full of fancy visual pyrotechnics (though they often are), but because Pixar’s writers, directors, and animators privilege plot, empathy, and character development above all else. Pixar storyboard artist Emma Coats provides a glimpse into her own creative process and lists 22 rules for sturdy yet surprising narrative construction.

Brand The Author, Not The Book! from Book Promotion.com by Rachel Thompson: At least three people asked me this week the same question: do I brand myself the author or my book(s)? What happens when I release my next book(s)? To piggyback a bit off Lori’s last article ‘Why You DON’T Need A Website For Each Book‘ earlier this week (great article, please read it), I feel strongly the same concepts she spoke about in her article apply to your overall author platform. If you market your book and not you, the author, you risk not only creating all types of extra work for yourself, but diluting your branding as well.

What One of the World’s Great Novelists Learned About Writing from David Ogilvy from CopyBlogger: His novel, Midnight’s Children, won the Man Booker Prize in 1981, and in 2008 the novel was named the Best of the Bookers, the best Booker winning novel since the prizes’ inception. However, before Sir Salman Rushdie was a famous, knighted novelist, he was a copywriter under the suspender-wearing, direct marketing pioneer, David Ogilvy. Yes, that’s right. The great novelist learned from the great copywriter.

In the Digital Publishing Era, Content Trumps Platform from PublishingPerspectives by Edward Nowotka: This past Friday people working in all aspects of digital and online publishing came together to talk about the future of publishing at Rewrite the Web in Berlin.  The day-long think tank covered topics from the publishing house of the future (Dr. Siv Bublitz, Ullstein Verlag) to how we read (Henrik Berggren, Readmill), writing so we can be found (Jens Redmer, Google) and Hybrid Authorship (Joanna Penn), along with collaborative writing with readers (Ashleigh Gardner, Wattpad) and redefining journalism (Bobbie Johnson, Matter).

 

socialmediaforwritersAbout the Author: Frances Caballo is a social media strategist, trainer, and author of Social Media Just for Writers: The Best Online Marketing Tips for Selling Your Books and Blogging Just for Writers. Presently, she is the Social Media Manager for the Women’s National Book Association-SF Chapter, the San Francisco Writers Conference, and the Bay Area Independent Publishers Association. You can find her on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, and Google+.