What I’m Doing and How You can Emulate Me
Many of us first-time authors with only one book out are virtual unknowns. Ditto for those of us with two or even three books out. We might grow frustrated and wonder what the hell’s wrong with people and why they aren’t buying our book. But, we always forget our author’s exposure is null and void, and that’s the first step in selling our books.
Think about it. If there’s a new mechanic in town but there are three others who are proven to be good at their job, and a few others who are solid, why would you go to the new guy?
The new mechanic can have all the experience and credentials out there but he’s unknown to the people in town.
He has zero exposure, and so do you.
How do you increase your exposure?
Thankfully, there are a few ways.
Write Shorter Works
While Northern Knights and the entire Lord of Columbia Series are full-length novels, I also upload short works to many different bookstores not named Amazon. Okay, I do have them on Amazon, too, but I have them available for free everywhere else, even Wattpad.
As mentioned in my previous article, these works are on all the other major sites for free plus Prolific Works.
Even if you’re exclusive to Amazon you can still place up to ten-percent of your book on Prolific Works, and can even link the e-book to your full-length novel on Amazon. It’s kind of cool and you will have buyers. Best yet, since Amazon only lets the reader see a few pages of the work, you can allow the reader to preview more of the work by utilizing this strategy.
As for placing shorter works on all the major sites, simply log onto Canva, create an ad for your paid work, and bam, you have even more candidates for potential sales into your paid works. Not just that, it’s literally free book promotion.
Be patient, however, and remember results aren’t going to come in overnight and royalties won’t reach five-figures immediately, especially if you only have one to two works out.
But what I can guarantee is within an 18-24-month timeframe (hey, I tell it like it is), you’re going to see something called progress, and we all love the ‘P’ word, right?
I’ve guest blogged a couple times and I need to get back into it more, but current time constraints at the day job has curtailed this. Come January, it’s something I want to start doing often, at least one guest article per month if I can handle it, maybe more.
You can find numerous sites to guest post on, and all you need to do is conduct a simple Google search. Just type in guest post: site name and you’ll find that you can post on some of your favorite sites.
Word of warning: You will face rejection here, but don’t sweat it. Something I’ve always thought here is rejection isn’t always due to bad writing. Sometimes it’s far from it. There may’ve been a recent blog post on the same subject, the owner of the blog may hold a different perspective, or the article just isn’t something the blog’s readers tend to be interested in.
Persevere through the storm of queries and eventually you’ll get a few accepting your work, which you can even build a portfolio around and will increase your credibility.
Why guest post?
It gives you the opportunity to dip into someone else’s audience, which might do wonders for your book.
Many of these blog owners will share your Twitter handle and Facebook links while even providing a direct buy link to your book.
Those following My Freedom Flame now know I’m a big believer in Wealthy Affiliate, and that’s because I have my own profile on the site, which I’ll provide a link to below.
But in all seriousness, I’m not trying to sell you WA; I’m simply hitting home on its effectiveness. The site, training, and online community works, or else I wouldn’t have invested my hard, and I mean hard-earned money into it.
Free online communities might work, but here’s what’s separated WA from literally everything else:
1. Pay it Forward: Leave a comment on someone else’s blog you’ll get a comment back. This shows Google that your site is engaging and is passing on high-quality information. Google will in turn rank your site higher.
2. Keyword research: The Premium version of WA provides you a built-in keyword research tool through Jaaxy, which costs $49.99 a month if you order straight from Jaaxy.
3. Own up to 25 Niche Sites: You could have a blog for your books, writing, and anything else you can think of. While you have to buy the domains between $13 and $15 per year, the more sites you have and content that’s built on those sites the more likely it is readers will find you and your work.
4. Google Indexing: WA tells you whether your site is indexed into Google and if so, which articles are indexed. For instance, on Get Pro Football Apparel, over half of my articles are indexed.
5. Site Hosting and Security, plus Email: Yes, you get all of this for free with your WA membership.
6. Likeminded Niche Members: Best of all, you’ll find likeminded members who are in the same niche you’re in, which like guest blogging, will help when you trade comments and maybe even promote one another’s site on your own social networking streams. It only grants you more exposure.
Read this article here that I wrote earlier in the week for the full benefits of WA in terms of using it to help build your author platform.
A Word About Social Media
Social media sucks, okay.
Sure, it’s a great way to supplement your exposure but at the end of the day, social media sucks.
Unless you’re willing to pay for ads, and you should at times, social media sucks.
You simply can’t reach a large audience via social media.
Sure, Twitter may come in handy if you Retweet your buy-link a few times per day so more of your followers see it, but still, if you have a few thousand followers, only so many people will buy your book.
I like using social media more for exposing this blog, not bombing it with buy-links from Amazon. Look, if Twitter members see my blog and the image looks interesting, they’ll click through to the site. If they want to buy my book or learn more about it they can click the link on the right-hand side of this article that says ‘buy now.’
See how simple it is?
Engage on social media, make friends, start conversations, but don’t play the salesman.
Again, lead readers to your book without shouting to buy your book.
Use the tools I’ve outlined above and you will reach more people than social media can dream of.
Again, social media has its place, but it’s far more valuable to reach beyond the simple scope of social media, instead looking for other avenues to increase your visibility and author platform. Social media famous is nice, but it’s not true fame; it’s fool’s gold.
Your exercise should be to get out of the social media mantra and start digging into such avenues, like WA, or if you have to take the free route, write some novelettes or novellas and place them for free on other sites along with a few ads to your paid works….and always add the link to your book!
My Wealthy Affiliate Link: https://my.wealthyaffiliate.com/toddmatthews