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message 1: by Neil (new)

Neil Ostroff (httpgoodreadscomneil_ostroff) | 255 comments I’ve been reading a lot of threads and forums lately dealing with the topic of marketing your book. It seems there are a lot of “newbies” out there in this relatively virgin explosion of indie publishing and many can’t understand why their book isn’t selling. When asked if they market and promote their books most say yes, but complain that they have limited time, maybe a few hours a week.

These authors wonder why they have little or no sales. Well, here’s a hard truth. To be a successful indie author you have to market your books as much if not more than you spend time writing them. It takes a lot of work to get noticed in a publishing sea that now includes a million new published books yearly. Competition to get readers’ attention is ten times harder than it was just three years ago. But it is not impossible.

With the internet, the exhaustive task of promoting is now accessible to even the most introverted writer. No longer must writers sit in nearly empty bookstores peddling their signed wares or go out on long book tours just to get a little recognition, that recognition can now be achieved at home. It can be done. You can get noticed. But it ain’t easy.

Internet marketing does sell books. I’m living proof. A complete unknown two years ago, since then I’ve sold thousands of books to absolute strangers. I also spend an average of two hours a day marketing. It’s tough to find the time, believe me, but I do it. I used to pay for sponsorships with mediocre results and placed samples of my books on all those hundreds of author sites that promise tons of exposure. They worked to some degree, but not worth the hours of drudgery downloading in comparison to sales. Then I discovered the secret to gaining an audience.

Blindly spamming and pushing your book over and over on social media only turns readers off. You come off seeming desperate for anyone to buy your book. The proper way to promote is to build a readership through online book discussions and joining groups. Respond when a reader emails you. Get involved in discussions other than about your own work. Get people interested in you by being interesting online. Your audience will grow in time. It will! Yes, marketing on the internet will sell your book, but you have to do it properly. And have patience, if you can tell a great story the readers will find out about you.

To read more about me and my books please check out my blog: ALWAYS WRITING

Click here to read my blog!
http://www.neilostroff.blogspot.com


message 2: by Laurel (new)

Laurel Rockefeller (laurelarockefeller) | 144 comments Neil wrote: "I’ve been reading a lot of threads and forums lately dealing with the topic of marketing your book. It seems there are a lot of “newbies” out there in this relatively virgin explosion of indie publ..."

Absolutely agreed. This summer I attended two marketing seminars from SCORE and one from CreateSpace -- all three seminars agree with you.

I also fell for one of the marketing scams before attending those seminars.

http://peersofbeinan.wordpress.com/20...

Please read this and then STAY CLEAR of the scam!

There are no magic results. Use your head. If something promises quick results or a short cut -- run, do not walk, away from it.

Even on LinkedIn I was approached by something of this nature. The idea: pay people to buy your books on Amazon. This is different from the giveaways such as on GoodReads (which I did trice before I realize less than 10% of people receiving those expensive hard copies were reading/reviewing).

Essentially the guy is having you join a group where people sign up to buy your book on amazon, then you pay them back, the idea being that each one shows up as a direct sale and your search results improve on amazon.

Who actually benefits from this? AMAZON because, as you know, amazon takes a pretty decent cut on each book sold.

Without looking up the exact numbers on one of my books (four books in seventeen editions), let's say that your book sells for $10 and you publish through CreateSpace. Of the $10 sample retail price, the book costs $3.50 to actually make. Amazon royalties average in the 10s%. So of $10 you must pay back to the person buying the book, $3.50 comes out of production, you get back about 1.50, and amazon takes the other $5.

So to artificially inflate your amazon sales rating, you just paid Amazon HALF of your retail price and MORE than the cut CreateSpace takes to physically make your book. Paying out $8.50 per person means that to get TEN such sales, you spent $85!

For that $85 you have ten sales. Ten books will not help your ratings that much. In fact, I'm estimating that getting ten reviews through a GoodReads giveaway (where you buy your books at cost and then mail them to the winners)not only costs less, but increases your presence on Amazon far more!

That feels like a scam.


message 3: by Heidi (new)

Heidi Peltier | 71 comments "The proper way to promote is to build a readership through online book discussions and joining groups. Respond when a reader emails you. Get involved in discussions other than about your own work. Get people interested in you by being interesting online. Your audience will grow in time. "

I have heard this a lot since I began this journey a few months ago. But can you give specific examples? I mean, my books are YA fiction. OK, so should I focus on groups that are just YA readers and try to get in on their conversations? And are we talking just Goodreads or other places as well? Goodreads to me is just overwhelming because when you join a certain number of groups, all the discussions and conversations just get lost in the mix. I may never find this one again! Don't get me wrong, I think this is good advice. I just don't know how to go about it!


message 4: by Mary (new)

Mary Filmer | 119 comments Mary Sumeridge Beginnings by Mary Filmer
Hi I must admit it is hard to get into the different discussions on Goodread. I would love to know who to do this right too. Any other advise you can give would be great. Mary Filmer Children's Author


message 5: by Laurel (new)

Laurel Rockefeller (laurelarockefeller) | 144 comments Mary wrote: "Mary Sumeridge Beginnings by Mary Filmer
Hi I must admit it is hard to get into the different discussions on Goodread. I would love to know who to do this right too. Any other advise you can..."


we are in a discussion. it is as simple as that. be part of at least one group where what you post has nothing to do with self promotion.


message 6: by Mary (new)

Mary Fonvielle | 17 comments Heidi wrote: ""The proper way to promote is to build a readership through online book discussions and joining groups. Respond when a reader emails you. Get involved in discussions other than about your own work...."

In forums like these where anyone who reads your postings has the option to view a profile, I often find myself drawn to checking out what another person might be reading, who their favorite authors are, whether they've written anything, etc. so I think that as long as you are giving thoughtful responses you are increasing your potential for exposure, no matter where you are. Being involved in genre-specific groups is probably a good idea, but you never know who is reading stuff in the general sections!


message 7: by Laurel (new)

Laurel Rockefeller (laurelarockefeller) | 144 comments Mary wrote: "Heidi wrote: ""The proper way to promote is to build a readership through online book discussions and joining groups. Respond when a reader emails you. Get involved in discussions other than about ..."

Be careful about spamming people on GoodReads. One person who noticed me in discussions promptly sent me a "buy my book, review my book" spam message. When I replied no to him (in the message, his entire rational was "I noticed you read fantasy" with nothing in there designed to entice me to even check out his profile), he replied he was new and didn't know that spam was wrong.

The only reply back I would give him is links to a couple recent blog posts about common mistakes made by independent authors (can post those if there is interest).

The golden rule applies here. Before you send a private message, think about how you would feel if a stranger about whom you knew nothing sent it to you. that keeps you grounded and helps you avoid trouble that damages your brand.


message 8: by Abby (new)

Abby Vandiver | 124 comments I don't see anything wrong with sending private messages to ask for reviews especially on a site designed to promote authors. It's not spamming. I like the idea of building readership by getting involved in groups, but at some point "marketing" has to involve letting people know you wrote a book.


message 9: by Laurel (new)

Laurel Rockefeller (laurelarockefeller) | 144 comments Abby wrote: "I don't see anything wrong with sending private messages to ask for reviews especially on a site designed to promote authors. It's not spamming. I like the idea of building readership by getting in..."

Approach matters. If the only reason you give someone is "I wrote a book," then it won't work. There are MILLIONS of independent books. There has to be a "because" that is personal to that individual. Otherwise it is begging and that is a turn off.

So often what I see from folks is ego-centric. I NEED THIS, I NEED THAT from you. So I should read your book because of what YOU need?

What happened to the customer here?

When you ask someone to read your book, you are asking them to make a commitment of time, energy, and oftentimes money as well. These are precious and very limited commodities to people, especially in this deep recession. No one just gives that of themselves without at least a good upfront reason why.

The reason has to be about THEM -- not you!


message 10: by Andrew (new)

Andrew Lawston (andrewlawston) | 227 comments My "marketing" such as it is, basically consists almost entirely of hanging around the internet talking about books. Which is what I used to do before I'd published anything anyway. The only difference is that now people clicking on my profile will find a little link to my book.

I very occasionally update the author threads on the various Goodreads groups I've joined, but I stopped bothering with them much when I realised that I never bother reading anyone else's author threads so why did I think anyone was going to read mine?

I have to say that my approach has not been spectacularly successful, with 130 sales in about 15 months... but at the same time I don't think I've annoyed anybody.


message 11: by Chris (new)

Chris Dietzel (chrisdietzel) Great post Neil.

I see tons of authors on here and other book forums who think effective marketing means posting the same description of their book on ten different threads, as if spamming boards in place of becoming part of the community will sell copies of their books. Hopefully, they eventually realize they are alienating themselves from potential readers.


message 12: by Jenelle (new)

Jenelle Also, there are many, many appropriate places where you can post about your book. A group I am involved in (a YA) does a "read to review" - where authors line up and offer a certain number of e-versions of their book along with a blurb about it and readers line up to receive and review said book. There are threads in almost every group I'm involved in called "Authors, Promote Your Books Here" and "Authors, Add Your books to our Shelves Here" - other than that, I find that it is better to simply engage with people on discussion threads, discuss books I've read, take part in writing competitions, write reviews, and recommend books (OTHER than my own). I didn't always get it right (as I only just discovered GR about a year ago), but it's not hard to learn the ropes.

The only time I "break" the rule of not recommending my own book is if someone outright ASKS for a recommendation and my book happens to fulfill their requirements. But I always make sure that I recommend at least three other books NOT by myself (which isn't hard, as the book I wrote is also in the genre I most frequently read), so that they know my recommending my book is only because it actually does fit the criteria of their request and isn't just spam.


message 13: by Laurel (new)

Laurel Rockefeller (laurelarockefeller) | 144 comments Jenelle wrote: "Also, there are many, many appropriate places where you can post about your book. A group I am involved in (a YA) does a "read to review" - where authors line up and offer a certain number of e-ver..."

I take the same approach to facebook, twitter, and even my own blog (where I feel a little more entitled to write about my own work).

For a while, I was on those twitter share tweet groups where the idea is you add your buy book tweet to a spreadsheet and everyone has to tweet everyone's tweets.

I stopped because it was taking me HOURS to schedule everyone's tweets while receiving tweets from others less than 25% of the time. Incidentally doing that opened me up to spam, including from horror and erotica authors/books. My books are either YA or YA-friendly; the last thing I want is a book cover featuring sex flowing across my facebook wall and twitter feeds!

If you write YA you have to be VERY PICKY with that since your brand has to stay within the boundaries of appropriateness for your YA audience.


message 14: by Joe (new)

Joe Donahue | 30 comments I've been researching marketing indie books A LOT lately. That's part of what led me to sign up here at GR. I'm in the process of doing the third revision of my work in progress novel and hope to self publish it sometime in the next couple weeks. There's a lot of information out there on the best way to advertise an indie released novel if you're willing to do the research. I have signed up for Facebook, Twitter, here, I've set up a blog and I've signed up for google authorship. I love participating in online communities anyway so that part is fun to me. I haven't really done much here on the GR forums yet, but I hope to be doing a lot more in the coming weeks. I also plan on trying to do a blog tour where I'll send postings to be put up as guest blogs where the POV will be from one of the characters from my book talking about whatever that blog usually talks about. I know nothing I have said here is new or ground breaking, but I thought I would go ahead and throw my two cents in on what I've been doing to market for the novel I'm about to release.


message 15: by Michelle (new)

Michelle (michelleabbott) | 86 comments I love the idea of blog posts from a characters POV.


message 16: by Kristen (new)

Kristen Elise (Kristenelisephd) | 11 comments I totally agree with what others are saying here and can also testify to it. I have been involved in several discussions on goodreads that had nothing to do with my books, but somewhere along the lines someone comes in and says "hey, Kristen, your books sounds interesting ... checking it out now." Then the next thing I know that person is reading my book. I only released it a couple of months ago, but I definitely see a positive trend between sales and goodreads conversations :)


message 17: by Kristen (new)

Kristen Elise (Kristenelisephd) | 11 comments Someone should also add this point: It might seem like a big "duh," but don't just be involved in author's corner. Get involved in groups that relate to your genre. That's where you'll find readers that are interested in the kind of book you write.


message 18: by Justin (new)

Justin (justinbienvenue) | 2189 comments Isn't ironic that the best advice to promote and market yourself is to not promote and market yourself? It seems totally silly but seems reasonable and valid. Here on GR it's good to have one folder dedicated to your work where you can post all things related to it and what not. However there are some people that just don't know any better any make tons of folders or constantly talk about their book in each thread they become a part of. More times then most we find this to be spamming. A small simple post can go a long way so keep it to one folder. Then go about the rest of the topics in the group discussing the topics related. You can get into some good discussions and meet some great people and fellow authors just by sharing your thoughts. There really is no need to post 5 different folders in the same group on the same thing..its not necessary and makes you a bit annoying. I've found that another good thing to do on here is if you see a topic that interests you on here but it hasn't been discussed about in months, make a comment anyways. You may get the thread lively again and discussions can begin.

Theres plenty of groups and tons of threads to get in on so theres no worries about not finding the right one. Someone mentioned getting in on groups and discussions related to your book which is a good idea just don't sit there and gloat about your book in every thread, again keep it brief. It's okay to perhaps mention your book if it's related to the topic but even then relate it to the topic, don't write it as a promotion type thing like you usually do. You want to come off as informative and relatable not spammy and redundant. I think while it seems odd its definitely true if people do it right.


message 19: by Abby (new)

Abby Vandiver | 124 comments Well, I've never heard of a marketing plan that didn't involve mentioning your book. Certainly, if you enjoy joining groups to "hang out" and meet new people, you wouldn't just post about your book. However, if your intentions are to promote and market your book, you should discuss that at every opportunity.

And the only thing, I think, to "approach" is being polite. 99% of the people read because they like to read, so when you make an offer for them to "read," what they like to do, then it helps them. Also, it makes them a better author, I believe. I am proud of my book and I mention it often just as people do with their kids and pets. And it's fine with me when other people do it. If I don't want to read it, I won't. If I wasn't interested in reading and marketing my book I wouldn't be on goodreads. And if I wanted to make friends or spend time with them I certainly would not be sitting in front of a computer.


message 20: by A.L. (new)

A.L. Butcher (alb2012) | 848 comments There is a lot of contradictory advice about. I read a blog post which recommended mentioning your book as often as you can to whoever you can. Personally I think this a way to get yourself in a heap of trouble.

Network, chat about other books, subjects maybe even unrelated to writing and people might check out your book. Now I don't check people's profiles on GR to see if they are an author, so a brief mention they are is helpful, to me at least. That said mentioning "BUY MY BOOK" is annoying if it is all the time. I would certainly recommend checking out the promotion guidelines for groups. Some don't allow authors to promote, some do in certain places. The former is fine, interact as a reader. A lot of authors like to read, I know I do and I read in a far wider group of genres than that in which I write. Some of the discussions are useful, fun and enlightening.

I have also seen advice saying never mention you are an author, advice saying spam all your contacts, advice saying do this and do that and mostly it is contradictory.

There are so many groups on GR, both reader only and reader and author it is easy to find some to suit. There are few I rarely visit now but I went a bit mad and joined tons so I think interacting with a few select groups works better than trying to spread yourself too thinly. People talk between groups anyway.


message 21: by A.L. (new)

A.L. Butcher (alb2012) | 848 comments Joe wrote: "I've been researching marketing indie books A LOT lately. That's part of what led me to sign up here at GR. I'm in the process of doing the third revision of my work in progress novel and hope to s..."

There are several threads offering author and character interview in several groups. Googleplus has a selection of author and reader groups as well. Try AskDavid.com (if you are on Amazon) as they promote your book for free as they are an affiliate but it is not often. AuthorsDb is ok, although not great.


message 22: by A.L. (new)

A.L. Butcher (alb2012) | 848 comments Joe wrote: "I've been researching marketing indie books A LOT lately. That's part of what led me to sign up here at GR. I'm in the process of doing the third revision of my work in progress novel and hope to s..."

There are several threads offering author and character interview in several groups. Googleplus has a selection of author and reader groups as well. Try AskDavid.com (if you are on Amazon) as they promote your book for free as they are an affiliate but it is not often. AuthorsDb is ok, although not great.


message 23: by Kathleen (new)

Kathleen | 6 comments My experience trying to find information about marketing an indie book is that there's lot of vague-ish advice like "try this" but very few chronicles like "here's what I did and here's how it worked out".

A few authors have give specifics on their efforts (M. Louisa Locke comes to mind), and I really appreciate it. I recently launched a segment on my blog (keepyourkneesbent.net) where I've decided to report on what I call an "Indie Roadmap" - my actual marketing experiences good, bad and ugly - so others can see what I'm doing and what results I'm getting (or not). We'll see how it goes!


message 24: by Carmen (new)

Carmen Amato (authorcarmenamato) | 33 comments There is no lack of social media platforms that an indie author has at their disposal. Twitter, Facebook, Google+, etc are all free and can easily be used to project your author image/brand. And virtually every indie author I know uses these platforms with some degree of success to get noticed and gain exposure.

What I don't see many indie authors doing, however, is approaching book sales as a business. Segmenting their audience, figuring out what motivates each segment, driving guest blog posts or advertising on targeted blogs, etc. Think about the whole image you are projecting from the book page on amazon (is it as visually attractive and informative as it could be? How does it compare with the bestselling books in your genre?) to the way your Twitter profile is set up.

As many in this thread have said, engaging with readers is essential in this day and age. But by being professional about the image you and your books project, you make it easy for those readers to know who you are, what your books are about, and what to expect when they engage with you.


message 25: by Justin (new)

Justin (justinbienvenue) | 2189 comments It's one thing to use all social media outletss that you can and you may see likes but as I've stated in prior threads liking someones page doesn't always guarantee a sale. It means your getting support but more than likely its that persons agenda to like you in order for you to like them. But that's a discussion for another time and place. I think we would all like to know the reason someone bought our books, what drove them. Heck, if I knew the reason I'd try that marketing all day long but everyone is different. Its said use Twitter and Facebook but don't spam your followers with posts. Its said post about your book but don't spam. Clearly there is a huge contradiction here but its all about management and how you manage your postings. I actually have a Twitter schedule that recommends to me what I should post on certain days and how to go about it. All to often people post so much content on social media thinking oh if I dont post a ton of stuff no one will see it. Thats simply not true. Yes its annoying when you post something and it goes unnoticed but oh well, just wait till the next chance you get and try to get it then. They say an hour in between Twitter posts. Or if your going to make multiple posts that they should not be identical or similar make them completely different. Media marketing is odd and slow at results but it just takes time as I have heard.


message 26: by Arabella (new)

Arabella Thorne (arabella_thornejunocom) | 354 comments They say when you blog only one in ten blogs should be about your book...readers need to be engaged by your postings,,,they need to be engaged by you as a person it isn't all buy my book


message 27: by Gordon (new)

Gordon Bickerstaff (gfb12345) | 76 comments I hear what Neil and others have said but still it seems like a lot of hard effort working the social media tools. Especially when all you want to do is get on with the next chapter. Like great painters we'll probably only get noticed when we've been dead 100 years.


message 28: by Chris (last edited Aug 22, 2013 03:24PM) (new)

Chris Dietzel (chrisdietzel) Abby wrote: However, if your intentions are to promote and market your book, you should discuss that at every opportunity. ""

On many platforms, that is true. On this site, however, it quickly leads to the writer alienating themselves from possible readers. If you ever have a chance to read the Feedback forum on this site, you will find it filled with long-time members who are frustrated with Indie authors spamming the boards. Authors who constantly mention their own book on this site tend to turn members off, not increase their sales. Obviously, this specific group is geared toward authors interacting with fans, but on other groups, I would venture to guess they appreciate people discussing a wide variety of books, not just one that happens to be written by the person posting.


message 29: by Arabella (new)

Arabella Thorne (arabella_thornejunocom) | 354 comments No free lunches, Gordon! Everything has a price. You worked hard on your book, but you can't sit on your accomplishment. You have to swim up stream with the rest of us authors and hope you're seen out of all the others.If you were trad published..Thepublishing house might do some fundamental PR for you. But you're Indie.YOU have to put on the feathers and bells and get the Attention. Social media...because it reaches every where is your friend...the road to readers and reviewers


message 30: by Abby (new)

Abby Vandiver | 124 comments Chris wrote: "Abby wrote: However, if your intentions are to promote and market your book, you should discuss that at every opportunity. ""

On many platforms, that is true. On this site, however, it quickly lea..."


How ironic that "marketing" on here alienates reviewers when the group is called "Yes, Marketing Works." What exactly are we talking about marketing?

It couldn't be our books . . .


message 31: by A.L. (new)

A.L. Butcher (alb2012) | 848 comments I find marketing harder than actually writing the books. It is really hard to know how much is too much, or indeed not enough. People have different tolerance thresholds to the hard sell, or soft sell and it is easy to annoy someone unintentionally.

It certainly helps to engage with readers, be they other authors or simply people who might enjoy your book. I have bought and read the books of plenty of other indies, many more so since I have been on Goodreads. There are many threads here and non-GR posts about authors behaving badly, now it MAY be some of these are unreasonable but some aren't. Readers can be influenced by a writer's behaviour and responding inappropriately to bad reviews, for example, is NOT the way to go. Readers talk to each other, they share recommendations and they share opinions, the same as everyone else. To an extent, you the author, need to market yourself.

Interact, chat, network, participate in blog hops, events, author/character interviews and do the same for your fellows and that might reap some rewards.


message 32: by Philip (new)

Philip (phenweb) | 158 comments Alexandra wrote: "I find marketing harder than actually writing the books. It is really hard to know how much is too much, or indeed not enough. People have different tolerance thresholds to the hard sell, or so..."

Couldn't agree more

As a reader, I get the new posts notification and then am fed up to see that it's multiple posts about the same book on different forums. Then a few days later same again.

As an indie writer, yes I have just launched a new book and I have placed a note of that on a couple of groups. Not too many and hopefully not at annoying level. If it is a reader forum I DO NOT mention my book unless asked, and then all the reader has to do is click on my profile. I blog a little bit and announce those blogs on the blog forums.

GR is a Reader's site with a large author presence. We as authors need to remember that!


message 33: by Gordon (new)

Gordon Bickerstaff (gfb12345) | 76 comments Arabella wrote: "No free lunches, Gordon! Everything has a price. You worked hard on your book, but you can't sit on your accomplishment. You have to swim up stream with the rest of us authors and hope you're seen ..."

I hear you Arabella and I know your are right but part of the dreaming is for a magic wand to do the business.


message 34: by C.M.J. (new)

C.M.J. Wallace | 193 comments I think I've talked about my books once in the (nearly) year I've been part of Goodreads, and that was to help another author who was asking about covers and branding. I included pictures of my book covers in the post, as did almost everyone else on that thread, and directed her to my website, where all four covers are together and she could see what I was trying to describe. I don't like talking about my books because when other people talk about theirs, it's mildly irritating. That's just me, but it's why I do what I do. I know it's not a balanced approach, but I subscribe to the philosophy of doing unto others...


message 35: by Chris (new)

Chris Dietzel (chrisdietzel) C.M.J. wrote: "I don't like talking about my books because when other people talk about theirs, it's mildly irritating. That's just me, but it's why I do what I do. I know it's not a balanced approach, but I subscribe to the philosophy of doing unto others... "

Perfectly said CMJ. I couldn't agree more. I just had a blog post the other day where I mentioned how success seems to follow those who support others more than it does the people who merely want to toot their own horn all the time.


message 36: by Heidi (new)

Heidi Peltier | 71 comments OK, so let me tell you about my books.... Oh, just kidding! :)

I'm still not sure what to do. Beyond Goodreads, where do you go to interact with readers?


message 37: by C.M.J. (new)

C.M.J. Wallace | 193 comments Chris wrote: "C.M.J. wrote: "I don't like talking about my books because when other people talk about theirs, it's mildly irritating. That's just me, but it's why I do what I do. I know it's not a balanced appro..."

Yes indeed. I've started recognizing a few people's names, and for all the wrong reasons. Self-absorption can be a dangerous occupation.


message 38: by C.M.J. (new)

C.M.J. Wallace | 193 comments Heidi wrote: "OK, so let me tell you about my books.... Oh, just kidding! :)

I'm still not sure what to do. Beyond Goodreads, where do you go to interact with readers?"


Heidi, you made me laugh! :)


message 39: by Joe (new)

Joe Donahue | 30 comments I've been working hard on trying to do guest blogs lately. If you do it right it can be a good way to get your name in circles that they normally wouldn't be in. What I'm doing right now is getting people to let me do guest blogs and having it written from the POV of a character from my novel. I have that character introduce themselves then talk about whatever the subject of the blog is like they would if they were the normal poster of that blog. It gives me a chance to get my name out there and give people some insight into one of my characters. I've only done a handful of them so far, but I'm hoping to do a lot more as I get closer to self publishing my novel.


message 40: by Raymond (new)

Raymond Sardella | 6 comments I, as a new indie, have struggled with this tremendously lately. On one hand I don't want to feel pushy and self absorbed when it comes to talking about my book, and on the other hand I would like to get it into peoples hands. I was thinking about giving 5 copies a week away for a month, or free coupons to download at nook and kindle. This way I could receive some reviews. As someone who does not like advertising themselves, do you think this is a good idea?


message 41: by Jonathan (new)

Jonathan Gillespie (jonathancgillespie) | 18 comments The best way to get involved in discussions:

1) Find a group of interest.
2) Be yourself, not a marketer.

Repeat.


message 42: by C.M.J. (new)

C.M.J. Wallace | 193 comments I've received very few reviews for books I've given away (and none for giveaways on Goodreads). My books aren't eligible for giveaways on Amazon because they're not for sale solely on that site, so I can't address whether giveaways are successful there.

And if I've misunderstood and really can give them away on Amazon--without paying for them--would someone please tell me?


message 43: by Lorraine (last edited Aug 23, 2013 09:20AM) (new)

Lorraine Taylor (lorraineT) | 8 comments I found GoodReads when I googled 'Market my own book'. I joined with the intention of promoting my book via joining groups and chatting and since I've joined, I've been like a kid in a sweet shop with all the great books about. I hosted a giveaway for my book and over 1100 people entered with 665 people putting it on their 'To Read' shelf. When I joined an Author Promotions group, several other authors messaged me with the 'Buy my Book' line. I remember feeling surprised and quite put off by the intrusion.

One thing I did find to be very helpful was advertising my ebook for free to anyone who fancied reading it in exchange for a review. This worked so well and I had great feedback from it, as well as chatting with some really lovely people. Since I asked for the reviews to be posted on here and Amazon, I had five reviews up within days of my book being published.

I've also found some new writers on here that have quickly climbed my Fav list :))


message 44: by Justin (new)

Justin (justinbienvenue) | 2189 comments I just wrote an article on a sub topic I took from this thread. It's about How Long Is it Okay To Promote? There were a few responses people made that really got me thinking so thought I'd write a topic about it. You can check it out @

http://www.goodreads.com/topic/show/1...


message 45: by Doug (new)

Doug Oudin | 168 comments After reading every comment on this post, all I can say is whew! I'm guilty of spamming, but only because I'm trying to do the same thing as at least most of authors; gain visibility.
To get away from that, I'd like to find a page where I can interact with people that love the sea; cruising, fishing, traveling the high seas. Any suggestions?


message 46: by Mike (new)

Mike (mcrowl) | 7 comments Much and all as I agree that there's value in getting 'people interested in you by being interesting online,' I'm not sure how this works out in practice. Neil tells us that it did, for him, but talking about yourself, and who you are and other things that don't relate to your book is fine...but how does the book get a look in? That's the bit I haven't been able to catch up with.
Interesting that there's been a big gap in this thread; it's only picked up again since Ryan got involved by the look of it. And actually Ryan has been one of the more helpful authors I've come across on Goodreads. He recommended a list of possible reviewers and I've had some positive reactions there...but...where are the book sales? They're still not happening.
Must be missing something in all this!


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