Just like Blake Shelton on The Voice pointing at himself to get picked to be on his team. As indie authors we have to put our hand over our head and point at ourselves to get readers attention. The key is to be charming as Blake Shelton but maybe not as drunk. In the past, we needed a publisher to shine a light on us, now we can do it ourselves. Unfortunately, I believe for many authors this is counter intuitive to their nature. As writers we want to sit in a room and be alone with our characters and stories. Now we have to out there and talk about ourselves, basically it’s pimping our selves and lets face it there’s only a small amount of people who can be Huggy Bear. (Starsky & Hutch reference look it up.) This is a necessary evil and it actually will make you a better author.
As someone who just published her first book, INSTANT CONNECTION VOL. 1 this summer, I am finding my way trying to discover the new frontier of self-publishing and promotion. Luckily I come in with a marketing and PR background in video games so I understand more than most about pricing, social media and promotion. Yet I am still learning the new and important lessons and trying learn from mistakes.
The great thing about the new digital frontier is that none of us are dependent on big publishers to publish our books. These are our stories, we own them, we decide the price, promote them and the freedom to do what we like. However, like Spiderman with that comes great responsibility in marketing and promotion our books. This is a entire other job that we must learn and maintain as well as write our 5,000 words a day.
Here’s what I’ve learned and what are the common mistakes we are making in promoting our books and ourselves. Take it or leave it.
THE WORD OF THE DAY IS DISCOVERY
The most interesting discovery I’ve made while working on building my platform over the last year is that almost everyone one of us has a story to tell. The biggest challenge for any of us isn’t writing the story but having someone discover us and this is true in games, music and other media now. How do our readers find us?
There are SO many authors out there promoting their own stuff it makes it hard for readers to find us even on the convention platforms-Blogs, Twitter, Facebook, Amazon Top 100. As we know most people use the Amazon top 100 to buy their books, if you aren’t in the top 100 then no one can find you. This is exactly the same in video games. I now use bloggers reviews and social media to make my book decision not Amazon.
The challenge is to make yourself, stand out while everyone is out there trying to tell their own stories too. As an avid reader I can tell you so many people are out there writing some great stories that aren’t getting discovered because they don’t know how to market and promote themselves in this new frontier. There’s no perfect way to do this but there are more efficient ways to do it. Trust me I am not expert either however, here’s some of the valuable tips I’ve learned in the last year.
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