Sunday, May 15, 2011

Marketing your writing

Promoting and marketing takes as much time as writing. To succeed, it’s important for a writer to have a clear plan on how to keep the writing in front of readers. Here are some ways to do that:

1. Brand your writing. If you write in a certain style or a certain genre, study the customers or enthusiasts for that style or that genre. This will tell you who you need to target and it will give you a clue on how you need to target them. For example, when selling a book on fishing, you might not want to concentrate all your efforts on selling it in a bookstore. On any given day, there may not be too many fishermen in the bookstore. Instead, you should sell it in sporting good stores and even bait shops might be a better venue.

2. Once you have identified where to sell your book, keep it out there and bring as much attention to it as possible. Continuing with the fishing book example, you should establish a look for your written materials that correspond with the fishing theme. If the cover of your book has a particular look, use that look on you business cards, postcards, and book marks.

3. Use your paper materials (bookmarks, business cards, etc) to tell readers where they can obtain your book or books. Allow for the possibility that someone will accidentally drop your business card on the ground and an avid fisherman picks it up. Have ways to obtain the book on the card, so the second owner of your business card will not have difficulty finding it.

4. A website is a must for writers. If you have several types of writing (e.g., magazine articles, books, fiction, non-fiction, etc.) you can have separate pages on your website that address each of these. You website should be professionally done and represent you professionally as a writer. There’s nothing as off-putting as someone trying to gain attention to their writing with a website full of errors. Be sure to have your website edited by a professional to ensure that it is perfect
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5. A blog is one way to attract attention to your writing. Perhaps include excerpts from your book on your blog from time to time. It's a good way to promote and market your writing.

6. Concentrate on generating a good professional image and promoting your writing through word of mouth. This is easiest done by joining writing guilds where you can network with other writers. Public speaking also brings positive attention to your writing and will go a long way in promoting and marketing your writing.

In all cases, remember that you’ll need lots of energy for promoting and marketing your writing. It is a job that needs continuous attention.

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