February 11th. 2017

There are two phrases I often hear: “Power dressing” and “Power nap”. I’ve tried neither, but I do have a new phrase: “Power promoting”. Before 2017 dawned, my idea of promotion and marketing was never really based on a firm foundation of experience, but more a kind of subjective approach which sometimes resulted in a few book sales. I’d listened to the experts, watched the videos and believed I could eventually master the game, but the trouble was it left me little time to write. So as the New Year dawned and I had finished my latest book, I decided it was time to get “down and dirty”. Not a buzz phrase, but something all military pilots would recognise. So, with that killer instinct burgeoning inside, I started paying more attention to the good results others were coming up with, and not always by paying through the nose.

I started with BookBub and came unstuck, which is unusual for what is generally recognised as the Holy Grail of advertising. I also used eReader News Today (ENT), which helped a little, and also submitted my book to Kindle Scout. I promoted that as best I could, but compared to the numbers I could see on the top books in ‘Hot & Trending’, I didn’t know squat (another little buzz word). There were authors ripping people like me apart with their statistics, and I had no idea why or how, but assumed they had more reach in the game and worked hard at it; they had built up a following, a readership, call it what you like, but they had more access than me.

Then along comes Paula Wynne, a very successful woman in the business of marketing, and promotion. She managed to get her first novel well up into the higher reaches of Amazon and attract some sterling reviews and maintain a healthy ranking. I wanted some of that, so when the opportunity came up to team up with her, I grabbed it. And that’s when I discovered the real meaning of time consuming, repetitive and sometimes numbing work at the keyboard. Write a book? I don’t have time! But in my own defence, I know that as I become used to following the diktats Paula hands down to me, the easier it will become (please).

It isn’t just Paula Wynne and working with her that has upped my game. I have teamed up with a couple of moderately successful writers to do some cross-promotions. And I have opened a new list on Mailchimp to collect the names of those who subscribe as a result of my new direction. I have joined instafreebie and I am also taking part in a Romantic novel promotion for Valentine’s Day with Chindi authors. All this means more visits to Twitter, Facebook, and countless other groups that I never knew existed. And there I find the new world of cross-promotions and authors helping each other, plus countless offers to boost sales, help you to become a best-seller. It’s like the iceberg: my involvement is at the tip, while below the surface there are thousands of us at it. And no doubt more will be jumping on the bandwagon.

Well, we all deserve a chance and hope to reap what we sow. But will all this work? I’ll know later in the year. At the moment my daily sales are moving along at a better rate than they were two weeks ago, but I have to put that down to the follow-on effect of the BookBub promotion. Hopefully my “Power promotion” will turn out to be a winner.

Here’s a couple of links that might interest some of you. Find out more about the Chindi Romance competition at www.chindi-authors.co.uk. Paula Wynne can be found at www.bookhub.online, and another author I’m working with is Paul Caselle who’s latest release is at http://amzn.to/2lu1SkC 

I’ve begun toying with an idea for a new novel, but ‘toying’ is exactly that: I don’t really know where I will go with it. I’ll try anyway. Wish me luck!

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