Monday, September 03, 2012

Marketing Advice for Authors and Others

"The math of finding your audience isn't linear, and even if you read to only two people, one of them might host a radio show, or be an influential blogger, or fall in love with your book and buy copies for friends." 
     --- Alethea Black, author of "I Knew You'd Be Lovely," published by Broadway Books; talking about promoting the book in the July/August 2012 issue of "Poets & Writers" Magazine

This is a fundamental truth about marketing, that escapes many people who have considerable experience in the field. Yes, numbers are great, but they don't tell the entire story.

If you can get 200 people in a room who will all go out and talk about your book (or whatever), that's wonderful. But the likelihood is that's not going to happen. Just filling a room with 200 people who have no interest in your product is useless - a total waste of your time. The same can be said for Twitter followers or any other marketing strategy you can come up with.

The morals in this story are:
1. Give your all to anyone who makes an effort to see you. If they're the only person in the audience, they still went to the trouble to be there and they are thrilled to meet you.
2. Target your audience as much as possible to find those people who are likely to spread the word about your book.
3. Consider other ways to find your audience - "non-linear" is a great way to think about - and it makes it a wide open prospect.
4. Treat everyone with respect. That blogger who showed up and wants to interview you may well have more people who are devoted and pay attention to everything he does than your local radio station does.
5. Be thankful for the experience. We learn through everything.

As a side note, I absolutely love "Poets & Writers" magazine. It's completely different than "Writer's Digest." I can tell Poets & Writers is a subscription I will keep up for a long time to come. Click on the photo to see ordering information.

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