Wednesday, June 4, 2014

Marketing 101

by Andrea Merrell

Marketing … promotion … social media—what’s a writer to do?

When I first started writing, I didn’t consider the complexities of getting published or establishing a platform. Fortunately, I was blessed with great advice: “Find a critique group, attend writers’ conferences, and network, network, network.” As an editor, I pass along this advice to my clients and stress the importance of promoting their books—whether traditionally published or self-published.

With the recent launch of my first book, Murder of a Manuscript, I have now moved into the marketing arena. Here are a few suggestions that have produced positive results:

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A Website or Blog where people can “meet” you
This is a must for writers.

Facebook and Twitter
to spread the message
There are many social media options. Talk to other authors and find out what has worked for them.

Guest Blogs
Generate guest blog posts with giveaway
s and links to your book. Don’t be afraid to ask. Most people are happy to have guest bloggers.

Beta Readers
Recruit b
eta readers to post Amazon book reviews. They can also spread the word through their own social media outlets.

Selling Your Book
Sell your book at speaking engagements
and through church and local bookstores. And don’t forget the power of word-of-mouth advertising.

Going the Extra Mile
Hire a publicist or marketing specialist if you can afford the investment.

I’ve found that most people (myself included) don’t like to
self-promote. That’s why networking is invaluable. People willing to help you will have a list of contacts. Those contacts will have a completely different list of contacts. Use this ripple effect to your benefit.

Jabez cried out to God and said, Oh, that you would bless me and enlarge my territory! (1 Chronicles 4:10 NIV). That's what happens when we network and build a platform.

A beautiful devotional, heartwarming novel, or well researched how-to book will not sell without proper marketing.
If you believe God has given you words that will benefit and bless others, get busy and trust He will enlarge your territory. Do your homework and develop a plan. Seek counsel from seasoned professionals in the writing and publishing industry, then do what works best for you.

The most important thing is to pray and seek direction. Believe God every day for divine appointments, connections, and favor. He will give you creative ideas and open doors of opportunity.

Andrea Merrell is Associate Editor for Christian Devotions Ministries and LighthousePublishing of the Carolinas. She has led workshops at the Kentucky Christian Writers Conference, Writers Advance Boot Camp, and The CLASS Christian Writers Conference. Andrea’s new book, Murder of a Manuscript, is available from Amazon. Her next book, Praying for the Prodigal, will be released by Lighthouse Publishing of the Carolinas in 2015.

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  1. Andrea, this is a fantastic, compact post about marketing. Gone are the days of JUST worrying about the writing. Love your thoughts!

  2. Andrea, good advice! And so compact it's easy to remember. I am tweeting your article!
    Elva Martin