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Monthly Archives: November 2018

Guest Post: The Key to an Effective Social Media Strategy for Writers


Whether you’re a writer of nonfiction — blogs, articles, technical and nonfiction writing — or an author of books and fiction, you know how important it is to be active and engaged on social media. It might seem like a headache or a chore to keep up with so much when you’d rather be spending your time working on your writing, but there are some easy ways to make your social media efforts both efficient and even fun. Here are some tips for a successful social media strategy.


Writers: 3 Tips for Better Promo on Goodreads from @ChrysFey

Promo Tips

Man holding phone in front of a Chrys Fey, @ChrysFey 

Back in June Elizabeth graciously had me as a guest on her wonderful blog for 3 Things You’re Probably Not Doing on Goodreads that You Should. Shortly after that post went live, I thought of 3 more things you could do on Goodreads and wanted to do a follow-up post here. So, are you ready for 3 additional tips that are easy to do and can be beneficial to you and your books?

Well, here they are!



Ahhh! Book release! Time to do all the things and still somehow get a reasonable amount of sleep at night. Or during the day. No judgement, fellow vampires.

I don’t know about you, but book releases really sneak up on me. (It sure did this year. I, uh, have a book out tomorrow. Yay!) I always feel like no matter how much preparation I do, I’m always forgetting something. This year, I tried to be a bit smarter. I had help making a plan, and I kept to-do lists. 

It’s really important to know what your publisher is doing in advance, that way you don’t cover the same ground. If your publisher is going to do a preorder campaign, for example, then you don’t need to worry about doing that work yourself and you can focus your efforts elsewhere. 

Keep in mind that even if your publisher isn’t doing much in the way of promotion, you don’t need to do it all yourself. You can hire someone or find an enthusiastic friend to get you organized. For me, outside help was key this year. I ended up accomplishing a lot more than I would have otherwise. (I work with YourBookTravels, but there are lots of people out there who can help with a variety of things for a variety of prices.) 

No matter how you go about it, make this as easy for yourself as possible. And remember: you don’t have to do everything. You can say no to requests. You can delegate. You can eat cookies until release and let the Bookscan numbers fall where they may. Do what works best for you.

So with that in mind . . .

Everyone’s release duties are unique, but here are a few things to consider putting on your to-do lists: 



by Edie Melson @EdieMelson

It’s October and in honor of Halloween, I just couldn’t resist a tongue-in-cheek post about something scary. After spending the year traveling and teaching writers about blogging, I have plenty of fears to share. Lest you think this is me pointing fingers, let me reassure you. EVERY single one of the things listed has been something I’ve done/struggled with at some point.

Remember, none of us is born knowing how to do this stuff. So lets laugh at our phobias together!

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Less Common Interview Questions for Blog Author Interviews: @ZoeMMcCarthy

image by kimono
Releases tomorrow.

For The Putting Green Whisperer releasing tomorrow, I had a stack of interviews for which I answered bloggers’ questions. At first, I liked the common questions, but was ashamed at the reason. I could copy those answers from other interviews and get the interview job done.

After I’d worked on answering a few unusual questions, I realized they revealed more about me and my story. Below, I list some less common interview questions that may tell more about an author and the author’s book.

Less Common Interview Questions About the Author

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Why readers aren’t reviewing your books

by  •


reviewing books

When my first book was published in the dark ages – the 1990s – I didn’t have to think about online reader reviews.

Amazon was only starting to sell books when WHY CAN’T A MAN BE MORE LIKE A WOMAN? was released in the spring of 1995; Barnes and Noble was still a strictly bricks and mortar business.

That meant that reader reviews came in the form of good, old-fashioned, word-of-mouth  recommendations among friends. If you liked a book, you told someone: “You will love this book.”

It was a pretty simple process.

Reader reviews have power

In today’s publishing environment where the Internet lets us recommend books to anyone, online reader reviews have become powerful and influential. In fact, most readers rely on them to make purchasing decisions.

Whether they should or shouldn’t doesn’t matter. The fact is that they do.

This can be frustrating. Unless you’re at the same level as authors who are household names — think John Grisham, Jodi Piccoult, Carl Bernstein — you probably struggle to get reviews.

No matter what you do, and no matter how popular your book seems to be, getting reviews from fans can be a real challenge.

Is that your fault?

Are you doing something wrong?


But maybe not.

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Every Author Needs Visual Marketing



visual marketing

In the past, I theorized that we were moving closer to visual marketing.

Guess what? We’re there. We’ve arrived.

According to this awesome blog post by Hubspot, there are many reasons why you should be focused on visual marketing on your blog and in your social media posts.

Let’s review a few of them.

  • Tweets with images receive 150% more retweets than tweets without images. Okay, the source for this statistic is Buffer, usually rated among the top three blogs in social media so I believe them and so should you.
  • In an analysis of over 1 million articles, BuzzSumo found that articles with an image once every 75-100 words received double the social media shares as articles with fewer images. So, if you want more people to read your entire blog post, include multiple, color images.
  • Users view 85% of videos on Facebook without sound. What this tells me is that it’s the images that mesmerize people.
  • Cisco projects that global internet traffic from videos will make up 82% of all consumer internet traffic by 2021. You can replace the word images with the word video. Whether you post images or video, you need to do one or the other.
  • 80% of marketers use visual assets in their social media marketing. Convinced yet?
  • Video (63%), alone, has also surpassed blogging (60%) in usage as a social media marketing asset. Yeah, video is huge. Just look at how popular Facebook Live is.

Also, several sources indicate that including images with your tweets double the chance of a retweet. So don’t tweet anything without including an image.

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Have You Pre-Sold Your Book?


One of the biggest lessons you can learn when you start to really look at marketing your books is about creating anticipation.

Think of the last big movie you were looking forward to.

You might have heard about it when the film rights were first acquired, that’s common for best-selling books. The announcement of a movie based on the Harry Potter books, or a popular novel like The Fault in Our Starsmakes big news.

Later you’ll hear about who has been cast to play leading roles.

There are occasional updates during shooting, particularly if there are cost overruns, accidents, delays, or celebrity spats on set.

Eventually stars will start to show up on television talk shows, and of course everyone knows that means the opening of the new film is within the week. Time to get excited and book your tickets or make arrangements with friends to go to the show!

No matter where you first encounter this long train of attention-building promotions, you will be drawn into the story around the movie from lots of different angles.

And every one helps to build anticipation for the eventual release.

How About Books?

 How Anita Diversified Her Blogging Income and Depended Less On Page Views


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The post 268: How Anita Diversified Her Blogging Income and Depended Less On Page Views appeared first on ProBlogger.

How a Blogger Expanded Her Income Streams and Engaged Readers in a New Way

As a blogger, do you feel like you’re on a hamster wheel? Do you need to continually feed the machine to keep your blog generating traffic and income?

We continue our Blogger Breakthroughs series with Anita Joyce, who experienced the same problem with her Cedar Hill Farmhouse blog.

Anita was working non-stop on her blog. She didn’t even have time to go to the grocery store or relax with her family.

But the income from her blog was tied to page views, so she needed a breakthrough.

Anita shares what she did to diversify her income streams and engage her readers in a new way. She started a podcast that turns listeners into friends, and a store that provides relevant products and valuable content for her audience.

Anita has some tips to share with you:

Missing? Don’t Market Your Book This Way

Indies Unlimited by Big Al


So here I am, sitting at my desk and scanning Facebook when I should be doing … well, just about anything else. My to-do list is long and only going to get longer if I don’t knock a few items off of it. Then I see the post. In big white letters on a red background is the message “Have you seen me?” Under that is a picture of a teenage girl. Below that is a line with a single word, “MISSING” screaming at me in red. A few more details (“blah, blah, blah”) are outlined after that. I start thinking:

Maybe I should blindly share this. The more people who see it, the more likely someone who has actually seen the poor thing in the picture will spot it and react. I hope she’s still alive. I wonder if she ran away. I sure hope she isn’t a sex slave somewhere. I feel guilty (but only a little) as I thank the Flying Spaghetti Monster that this isn’t one of my grandkids although just the thought of that makes me cringe, imagining what her parents and family must be going thorough.

I wonder if I know anyone in the area she’s from. Maybe I’ll share it and tag them. Hmm. Last seen near “Coal Ridge H.S.” If you have information “contact Coal Ridge P.D.” No phone number, that’s strange. I wonder what state Coal Ridge is in? And what the heck is with this URL to a Facebook page at the bottom? The URL doesn’t seem like it is related to the rest of the post.

When I type the URL into my browser, I discover a page that appears to be related to books or short stories that take place in a fictional town called Coal Ridge. It looks like the missing girl is fictional too. Now I’m pissed. After giving the grandkids hugs and making sure I don’t have any books from this author submitted for review to consider discarding, I storm off (virtually) to a few Facebook hangouts to ask some reader and author friends if I’m overreacting. (I know, you people don’t think I would overreact to anything, but my daughter claims otherwise.) It’s pretty much unanimous; they agree with me. In case you don’t understand why someone might be upset or offended by this, I’ll explain why I and others I talked to took issue with this.

A person seeing this phony post on their Facebook feed could react one of three ways.


read more Missing? Don’t Market Your Book This Way