Sunday, March 06, 2011

Finding a Balance Between Writing and Marketing

Fauzia Burke wrote a terrific article in The Huffington Post about the six essential elements for successful book marketing. In a nutshell these are:

. website
. e-newsletter
. blog
. Facebook
. video
. Twitter

She talks about why each of these elements is important, and especially notes that using all six is the best marketing strategy to promote your books. Burke also states, however, that these things take time and attention. In my opinion, that’s where most of us fall down, not intentionally, but due to real life/family/day job circumstances.

When I was working a day job, all of my free time was spent writing and catching up on household chores. Although I knew the importance of promotion, the idea of putting in time each day to promote was laughable. This became a worrisome obstacle, however, and I eventually concluded that the only way I could add regular promotion to my week’s long to-do list—and write a little more—was to cut back my working hours.

Now that I’ve been writing full time for six months, my creative output has improved as has my promotion to some degree, but it still needs work. I have to confess that I only do two out of the six steps, blogging and Twitter, with any regularity. I have a Facebook page, though I don’t visit it daily, which I should. My website is a work in progress at the moment, but once it’s updated, it will also be a useful tool. My publisher is working on a book trailer for The Opposite of Dark, so the video aspect is covered. Funnily enough, a colleague recently mentioned that since I’m writing a mystery series, a newsletter might be a good idea, so I’m thinking about that too.

I’ve been writing a long time, but—introverted wallflower that I am-- it’s only in the last year or two that I’ve come to fully accept the importance of marketing oneself. Happily, all of the steps Burke listed can be done from home but, even as a full time writer, the question still remains, how much time should I spend on marketing versus writing, especially when putting out a book a year? I'm one of those who can only produce polished work after multiple drafts, and each one takes time. It’s a question I don’t have a clear answer for yet. Maybe I will in another year.

You can find Burke’s article at



Julie H. Ferguson said...

Get a FB biz page in the title of your book immediately and then ask all your FB friends to "like" it. Then you're on your way.
There are 500 million on FB and some are readers and writers ...!

Rex Jameson said...

Has the video trailer worked for you well in the past? I was looking at a couple from links at kindleboards, and some of them only had like 200 page views! I have one in mind, but if the exposure is going to be so limited, I'm not sure how much focus I should put into it.

Also, you didn't mention the book cover, and I tend to think, as a reader, that this is actually the most important - along with a real strong tagline / pitch.

As for me, I am still in the editing phase of my first book, so I only have an author facebook and blog going so far.

P.S. Checking out author blogs at kindleboards.