Wednesday, November 5, 2014

There is no excuse. #writing #marketing

I know you've heard the book marketing promises about "fool proof" plans and "guaranteed" techniques for selling thousands of copies. The ones where you publish on Friday and are rolling in cash by Sunday night. It's a nice idea, but let's be real. Writing isn't a 'get rich quick' scheme. For most of us it's a constantly shifting system that generates a decent return only after years of effort. Of course, it's much harder to sell a marketing book with that for a title.  

I've tried a few of the guaranteed methods and talked to authors who have tried others. After more than a year of discussions and presentations and pod casts I've reached a conclusion. There is indeed a guaranteed method for marketing success and it's very simple. 

You have to put in the time. 

I don't know many authors who enjoy it, but I do know that no excuse will change the rules. Complaints about limited time and limited funds won't miraculously produce shortcuts. You either do it, pay someone to do it for you, or your sales will suffer. It really is that simple. 

I read an article recently that said 78% of books fail to sell more than 100 copies during the life of the book. I can believe that. There are a lot of authors out there and the competition gets more intense every year. Traditional publishing houses used to be the gatekeepers. Books didn't hit the market without someone's stamp of approval thus limiting the number of titles. As indie publishing gains popularity, the number of books pouring onto Amazon increases and we all face the daunting task of making our offering visible in the deluge. That will take more than a snappy title and a professional cover. It takes an organized business plan and at least a rudimentary knowledge of marketing techniques.

It's a depressing truth that we have to sacrifice writing time to market what we've written, but it's a fact authors can't afford to ignore. Writing the book isn't enough. We also have to sell it. I guess that's the downside of the Indie Era. It's easier to get your book on the shelf and harder to get people to realize it's there. As the competition increases, success will go to authors who really do see their writing career as a business and their book as a product.

You have your writing life nailed down but what about your business plan? Have you plotted your two-, five-, and ten-year goals or are you leaving your success to chance and hoping for the best?

Catch up with the Saving Liam series! Available now.

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