Marketing Plans: Should You Be Buying What They’re Selling?

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I’m not sure why this trend this year, but 2023 seems to be all about marketing and self-promotion. I’ve sampled three different courses/plans.

In the first, a leading author whose indie books have been on the New York Times best sellers list showed how to boost your backlist to help make sales. Her thing is to look at your backlist and determine which books are doing great, which are doing pretty well, and which are doing badly.

Her advice it to pick one of those stinkers and first update the cover. Then update the description. Last but not least, check you price. Then she runs an ad or takes part in a promotion. Do one at a time because that way you can see if it worked and how well. The cost of her session was $0.

Next I saw webinar from someone who helps other writers market their books. He says that social media ads are pointless. They don’t work at all. Instead he advises writers to find a way to connect with “100 little Oprahs.” Find 100 social influencers with some success, and ask them to feature your book in some way. The session that I saw was $0 but he offers a detailed plan on how to do this for . . . I don’t remember. It was thousands of dollars.

Last but not least, I read a piece about success with social media ads. They offer a seven day free sample and two classes, one on Facebook ads and one on Amazon. Each class is about $175. He tells you to promote your best performing book to have even better sales.

Three different webinars or articles. Three different methods that to an extent contradict each other. So who do you believe?

There are a lot of variables when it comes to promoting your books. What works for one author may not work for another. Times change. What works in one genre may not work in another. And you have to know how to find the person who will buy your books. Note: I didn’t say where to find your reader. When you write for children, your buyer and your readers aren’t always the same person. Talk to people whose work is similar to yours in genre and audience. See what has worked for them.

Part of it will also depend on you. You may not be comfortable reaching out to 10 people let alone 100. But if you don’t have money to spend on advertising, and you have an ebook, reaching out to 100 people may cost you time but doesn’t have to cost you a dime.

There are a lot of places to go to find information on this topic. Look around and find something that makes sense to you. And don’t spend a lot of money on a class if you aren’t going to follow through.