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I’ve been pushing my book down various avenues in the last few months and overall been quite disappointed with the results. Everything in life is a learning curve and it does take a while to see what gets results and what doesn’t.
Here are some of the things that have brought success and what hasn’t.
1)      Book Signings – This was tricky at first but now worked out the secret to getting this right. First thing I’ve learnt is that book stores like to do signings whether you’re known or not. This is because it gives the store something to focus on for a day and generate interest. So don’t be shy about going down to any store and asking. I would be surprised if they turn you away. Also on the day make sure you have something to give people to provide information. A leaflet or even some sweets or chocolates. Anything to generate interest and get people talking. People are often shy of approaching an author therefore finding a way of getting the conversation going is essential to sealing the deal.
2)      Facebook Advertising – This is an interesting but ultimately tricky task. I tried a few different ways. The key to it is identifying target groups, like people who like reading. Well firstly that’s all well and good if people indicate on their facebook page that they like reading. Some do but probably there are many readers out there who don’t. Having said that you don’t pay for how often your ad appears but how often people click on it. I found more success out of targeting local markets rather likes/dislikes. The other trick is that people might click on your page but it doesn’t mean they will click on to buy. Whatever you direct them to, make sure how to buy and what you are selling is clear, otherwise they will disappear before you know it.
3)      Google Adwords – A bit like facebook advertising but even more of a minefield of targeting the right market place. I tried to get my kindle marketing going with this because I dropped the price to £2 to generate more interest but haven’t yet found the combination that really works. Genre specific headings or book writing in general can result on many clicks, but still not people buying. I know others have had much more success in the e-book market and I need to spend more time on this and how they did it.
4)      Print Media – This is the golden calf of advertising but difficult to achieve. After a few challenges with my local newspaper, which had little to do with me, they have finally got round to printing a story on me. I’m hoping for some success from this, but really want to get more regional papers to take an interest. I have tried sending books directly to them but so far I’ve been ignored. I will keep trying.
5)      Blogging and social media- This is very time consuming and intensive. It’s very difficult to keep the momentum on this one but I think I’ve some more ways to do it but it doesn’t mean that everyone chooses to read what you have to say.
Interested to know others success/failure stories with marketing. It’s a very big and scary world out there but do believe who people know who you are and they like you, then they will buy your book.

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Comment by Steve Norris on December 26, 2011 at 4:43pm

Lori - you raise an interesting point. I tend to agree that just because people find you doesn't make them exchange money.

It's always going to be difficult for a new author especially in such times of extensive competition. Frustrating I'm sure, especially when you are proud of the work you've done.

The only way is up, I say. Learn what works for you and your genre and build on that. Every book is different and requires the authors passion to pass to reader in some way. Wish I knew the answer to that one for my own work never mind yours.

Good luck with it.

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