Publishing and Marketing Nerds

Shouting into the Void

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  • #119539
    Zee
    @zee

    As a recently (self) published author, I’m still trying to get my head around the concept of promoting/marketing my books.

    Yes, I’ve sold a few books, but I don’t have a clear plan for how to go about getting them into the hands (or rather, onto the screens) of more readers. So far, all that I have done feels a bit like shouting into the void.

    Anybody out there with fresh ideas? Or willing to share a moment of commiseration?

    #119802
    Daeus Lamb
    @daeus-lamb

    @zee A novel I self-published several years ago was kinda like that. 😄I’ll just name drop my favorite resources on marketing and self-publishing.

    . Absolutely anything by David Gaughran.

    . Kindleprenuer.com

    . It’s been a long time, but I remember Tim Grahl’s book’s standing out.

    . The Novel Marketing Podcast!!!

    And this is something going on this week that looks pretty cool: https://fictionmarketingacademy.com/?affiliate=cslakin

    😀
    👕👍
    👖 🐢🐢🐢🐢🐢

    #119836
    Sarahfi
    @sarahfi

    @zee I feel similar. I’m not published, but marketing feels so nebulous and impossible- shouting into the void. Exactly.


    @daeus-lamb
    Thanks for the resources!

    What you sow does not come to life unless it dies.
    -1 Corinthians 15:36b

    #119862
    Zee
    @zee

    Yes, thanks for sharing, @daeus-lamb. Every little bit helps. What’s the name of your novel? Is it still available?

    #119896
    Daeus Lamb
    @daeus-lamb

    @zee No, no. 😄I took it down.

    😀
    👕👍
    👖 🐢🐢🐢🐢🐢

    #119913
    Zee
    @zee

    Oh. It couldn’t have been that bad, could it? Better luck next time, I hope.

    #123882
    MyClipboardIsMyViolin
    @myclipboardismyviolin

    Hrm. The first step to stop shouting into the void is to realize that you are not in a void. You need to go out and grab some people. This is why I like Twitter because I can just follow and retweet and respond to the people I want, and then find out from them what social media content to produce to keep them around.

    But who should you invite to your book? For a novel, there are two key determinations:

    1. What is my novel’s theme? What is its message that I want it to convey? What are my beta readers telling me is actually the theme of my novel?

    2. Who is the main character of my story? Age, gender, race, belief system, political stance, insecurity, etc. Get out the attribute list. People who enjoy your novel are people who can relate to your main character.

    In short, what is the theme of your novel and who needs to know the theme? Mismatch between theme and audience is the #1 reason why novels fail, other than plain flat bad writing. For example, conveying messages about human reproduction would likely fail badly with a child protagonist who isn’t even old enough to experience that problem, and kids don’t need to know about that for years.

    So you need to extend the ideas behind the novel into your platform. For example, let’s say that you’re wanting to convey an anti-suicide message with your novel to men between 18 and 25. You would make a social media platform centered around the theme of your novel, why suicide is a bad idea, what to do if you feel like doing it, etc, and invite a bunch of young men to your platform and see what they like. If you can’t convey that message to your target audience on social media and have them resonate with it, you won’t be able to sell them your novel, because your novel is you doing exactly the same thing.

    In selling your message, you need a little bit of creativity and artfulness. For example, in my suicide example you don’t want to start posting statistics. You want to be more empathetic, talking about the pressures that people face that lead them to the edge.

    3. Sometimes the genre of your novel can also be leveraged. For example, Shadiversity’s target audience for Shadow of the Conqueror could be described as “fantasy fans” and so he built his platform to appeal to that group, talking about swords and medieval weapons and history, etc, stuff that fantasy fans care about. His book was a big success. The theme of redemption in Shadow of the Conqueror is one that fantasy fans tend to like.

    The standard trick of appeal to genre works if you add VALUE to the audience. For example, fantasy fans become better writers if they know how medieval combat works. You can’t just sit around and talk fantasy without adding value because then there is nothing to buy. What do you have to add to the genre? Build on that.

    ——————————————————————————————–

    Poetry is different. The best marketing approach for poetry is to build the show around the author’s own persona and sell that as valuable to the audience. There are no characters, so there’s no insulation.

    Poets could learn a bit from bands because the principles are the same: poetry readings (shows), and chapbook/book (albums). So it’s more direct: I wish to convey this message to these people. Who do you want to be around? Who is this message for? It’s just an extension of your identity in Christ.

    Who are we telling the Gospel today? That’s the bottom line.

    Sarah, Miss S, Sierepica_Fuzzywalker

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