By Josh Wardini
In an era heavily dominated by technology, it is not so surprising to find the publishing world gradually moving into online selling, whether it is print, ebook, or audio books. As an integral part of independent publishing, marketing is even more imperative in the digital era. Readers tend to do their research online, from new releases to the authors they love.
For independent authors who want to promote their books and build an online following, it is important to establish a strong online presence. But where do you start? How do you create a solid strategy that will help launch your personal brand and grab the attention of your prospective readers?
To begin, developing a marketing strategy that considers the current digital trends can lay down the foundation of a successful branding and publicity campaign. This step involves several factors:
- Identifying your unique personal brand. What sets you apart from other authors? What genre are you specializing in?
- Defining your target readers. Think of your audience. Are you writing for adults, teens, or children? Are your books geared towards women?
- Setting your goals and priorities. What is your purpose of having an online presence? Do you aim to connect with your readers, sell more books, or both?
Once you have identified these important considerations, it is time to determine which particular digital channels can help you reach your goals.
Launch a Professional Website
If you want total control of your digital channel, the best method is to design and launch your own professional website. It is mostly independent of outside factors, unlike social media platforms where algorithm updates can hamper your ability to expand your audience reach. With your own website, you write your own rules.
This is a place where you can showcase your works and even directly sell to readers. Make sure to optimize it for search engines so your readers can easily find you online.
Develop a Content Strategy
Maintaining a blog on your website can be of great help in establishing your online presence. Readers want content that can help them learn more about your works and your life as an author. Sharing news and updates will keep them engaged.
However, you cannot simply write whatever comes to your mind. You also need to make sure that the content you are putting out there is relevant and valuable to your readers. This means you should not only focus on selling but also informing and educating your audience.
Use your writing skills in creating blog posts that can help your readers understand your works better. If your work is a self-help book for women who aim to be empowered, you can produce content related to your theme.
You may also share your journey as a self-published author as well as writing tips that can guide them through the process.
Create Social Media Pages
Social media is more and more prevalent in today’s world. Your potential readers must have joined many major social media platforms like Facebook and Twitter. If you want to expand your reach further and promote work more effectively, creating own social media pages can help a lot.
Many authors, both traditional and independent, harnessed the power of social media for marketing purposes and communicating with their readers.
Paulo Coelho, for example, has millions of followers on Twitter. It is an effective platform that lets you give regular updates to your audience without taking so much time. You may also run ad campaigns on Facebook to market your book to a segmented audience.
Consider Email Marketing
Although social media is popular nowadays, a lot of people are still using emails for communication. Take advantage of this platform by running an email marketing campaign before the launch of your book.
You may send regular email newsletters that offer exclusive updates and even coupons for your books. This can create a buzz and help spread the word to your intended audience.
The diverse publishing landscape means you need to work extra hard as an author to get yourself noticed and heard by prospective readers in the online world. Your digital presence can change the game for you and usher in a wealth of benefits.