By k | March 20, 2017 - 6:00 am - Posted in Marketing

I LOVE Best Of… lists.
Not because they’re truly
the best.
Usually they aren’t.
However, they usually are
the most popular.

And they’re an easy way
to find out
what is currently popular.

Want to know
what your target market is listening to?
Listen to the top 20 songs
for the week
for that target market.

Want to know
what your target market is watching
on TV?
Look at the ratings for that demographic.

Yes, some hot new shows or songs
or books or whatever
will be missing
from that list
but it should give you a general sense
of where the market is
and that will help you shape your promotions.

Best Of… lists
are a great cheat
for staying current.

By k | March 19, 2017 - 6:00 am - Posted in Marketing

Readers,
when deciding upon a book,
usually go from broad information
to detailed information.

They look at the cover,
a single image giving them
a feel for the story.

If they like the cover,
they read the back cover blurb,
a 150 word description of the story.

If they like that,
they’ll read an excerpt,
4 or 5 pages of the book.

If they like the except,
they usually buy.

The thing is…
if I give readers the excerpt first,
most people won’t read it.
It is too much,
too big of a time investment
in a story
they might not like.

This is the same
for website content.

David Langton,
President of
Langton Creative Group,
shares

“Even though
you have endless space online,
your reader may actually spend
less time reading online.

So you should strive
to write copy
that is succinct and tailored
to the needs of a reader
who wants to glimpse content
and spend less time
bogged down in details.

You can craft your messages
with links to longer content
in what we call “progressive disclosure.”
The key is to let the reader
choose to read more.”

Don’t give casual visitors
detailed information.
Reel them in,
layer by layer.

By k | March 13, 2017 - 6:00 am - Posted in Marketing

When I was in new product development
at a major beverage company,
one of the questions we would ask
about each new product
was
what brand does it fall under
(if any)?

Each brand made a promise
to customers.
One brand might have
‘fun’ fruit-based drinks.
Another brand might have
more ’serious’ fruit-based drinks.

Ensuring the new product
was in the right brand
was key,
not merely for the new product’s success,
but for the success
of the existing products
in the brand.
Adding a ‘wrong’ product
could destroy the brand.

Bella Andre,
New York Times Bestselling Author,
shares

“Fulfilling the promise
to your reader.

This is
the #1 most important thing
I do,
all day every day,
as a writer
–and also the “brand manager”
of my “Bella Andre” brand.

I am very clear about
what my promise is to my readers
(emotional contemporary romances
with deep family bonds at the heart
–even my Maverick Billionaires
while not technically related by blood
are a close-knit family),
and after 50+ books,
when I’m writing/editing
I know when the promise is there
and when it isn’t
and needs to be rewritten.”

If your possible new product
doesn’t fulfill your existing brand’s promise,
consider launching it under another brand
or not at all.

By k | March 11, 2017 - 6:00 am - Posted in Marketing

We all know that
making a difference
in the long term
is a constant effort,
the ‘drip.’

But many of us,
myself included,
think one time exposure
is enough to make a substantial difference
in the short run.

It often isn’t.
What is needed
is a combination of pushes.

Seth Godin
shares

“In the short run,
drip by drip rarely puts people on alert.
It’s the thunderclap,
the coordinated,
accelerating work of many people,
that causes those in power
to sit up and take notice.
Do it a few times in a row,
or fifty, or a hundred,
each with more impact,
and you can successfully intervene.”

Once is not enough.

By k | February 28, 2017 - 6:00 am - Posted in Marketing

Many readers buy
based on key words.

Amazon knows this.
They have a key word section
on their product loading page.

Harlequin has known this
for decades.
That’s why they have titles
like
‘Billionaire’s Secret Baby’
and
‘The Cowboy’s Marriage Of Convenience.’

Yet, every second day,
a writer complains to me
about low sales
and I look at
her blurb/book description
and see there are NO key words.

The blurb is well written.
I can tell she has invested
quite a bit of time
into crafting it.
But it doesn’t have
what the reader wants.

I see this happening
in every industry.

The orange juice package
that isn’t predominately orange,
the color orange juice buyers look for.
The library with no books visible
from the outside.
The club with no line up
outside the building.

Know what your target
is looking for.
Give that to her.

By k | February 27, 2017 - 6:00 am - Posted in Marketing

The recent big viral hit on Facebook
is the live camera
on the pregnant giraffe
at the New York Zoo.
Viewers are waiting
for her to give birth.

This might seem trivial, silly,
a viral fluke.

It isn’t trivial
and it isn’t a viral fluke.

This pregnant giraffe
is giving people
what they desperately need
right now
–hope.

It is a source of light
in a dark, stressful time,
a hope for rebirth
for many of us.

Could your product,
your marketing
do the same thing?

Could you give
people hope?

By k | February 26, 2017 - 6:00 am - Posted in Marketing

While building the book business,
I’ve tried a gazillion marketing programs.

What works for me?

Consistency.

If I post on Facebook twice a day
for a year,
for example,
it is more effective for sales
than posting
on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, etc.
twenty times in one day
once a year.

If I send my newsletter
once a month
for a year,
it is more effective for sales
than sending it three times a year.

Promoting consistently
is easier if you enjoy the promotion,
if it is something you find natural,
fun.

Promote consistently
on a few platforms.

By k | February 24, 2017 - 6:00 am - Posted in Marketing

I see this all the time
on social media.
A writer talks about her books
and then doesn’t leave
a buy link for those books.

She doesn’t want to seem
‘pushy’
or a ‘promo whore.’
She thinks it is a good thing
not to leave a buy link.

It isn’t a good thing.
It is a pain in the reader’s ass
not to leave a buy link.

The reader has to search
at the bookseller
for the book
and hope she is purchasing
the right one.

Do your prospects a favor
and give them
the buy links.
Make their lives easier.

By k | February 22, 2017 - 6:00 am - Posted in Marketing

I had a book release
in February.
I have another book release
in March.
That’s one month apart.

It isn’t long enough
to promote the second book
properly.

If momentum holds,
it will have half
the sales of the first book.

Not because it isn’t as good.
Not because I didn’t spend
as many resources in its production.
Not because it didn’t appeal
to readers.

Because I didn’t have time
to market it.

Don’t make my mistake.
Leave yourself enough time
to promote your product
before releasing
the next one.

By k | February 9, 2017 - 6:00 am - Posted in Marketing

Being a romance writer,
I sell love.
So when I talk with readers,
I openly show the love.
I tell them
I love them.
I virtually hug them.
I listen to them

Mike Michalowicz
shares

“In Robert Cialdini’s book
Pre-Suasion,
he explains a critical concept.

Consumers are far more likely
to buy from people we like,
which isn’t a huge surprise.

What is surprising is
the degree to which
we place subconscious importance
on whether we believe
the person selling likes us.

If we perceive that
the salesperson likes us,
we are far more likely to buy,
at least in part
because we believe that
people who like us
will look out for our interests”

Don’t be shy
about loving your customers.