Marketing: The Agony that Can Lead to Victory

Yahoo Image Search

What do you do after publishing a book?  You promote until you get sick of the following terms:

  • Social Media
  • Retweet
  • Blog Tour
  • Banner Ad
  • Word of Mouth

That’s only a short list and I’m sure everyone will have their own.  My own thoughts on marketing is that it is always changing and the best thing you can do is put out another book.  If you don’t have another then interviews and guest posts to promote your book is the best option.  Tweets get lost in the shuffle a lot and Amazon promotions require a lot of research and work, but even then it might not work for your genre.  You have promo sites, but many of them closed up shop last year and the ones that survived are engorged with new books.  So, you have a lot of saturation to fight through.

In fact, the biggest cause of saturation is finding something that works.  One author finds a great idea and proves that it works, but then you have everyone rushing to use it as well.  Remember 99 cent books?  Great way to promote or get people into a series, but you had a wave of people churning out 99 centers with no editing to make quick money.  That hurt the 99 cent brand.  Perma-Free gained a stigma as the author not having faith in their own work, which is not necessarily true.  You had authors releasing 99 cent excerpts to entice people and that backfired when people tried putting out entire books in 99 cent increments that came off as money grubbing.  After all, paying 99 cents for every chapter of a 20 section book will be more than paying $3.99 for the full thing.  So, you always seem to have a group that sees a useful marketing move as a way to make cheap money and running it into the ground.

One thing I have worried about with marketing is that I become part of the background for various sites.  Having a long series, I show up on many sites and do a blog tour every 4-5 months.  That’s not counting Bedlam and Ichabod Brooks, so it’s almost like I’m always there.  You know how people get sick of celebrities that are always in the news and seem to have a new movie every few months?  That’s what I always fear happens to me, but without the adoration and fame and ability to buy pizza without guilt.  You need to come up with some variety, which is tough when you don’t have unlimited sites and blogs to promote on.

I also have the issue that I’ve written about so much to promote my books that I’m not sure what to write about.  I’ve explained every character, gone into my world-building, and analyzed every tidbit that I can think of.  Usually for my own blog, but I used to do a lot of guest blogs.  I still get the urge, but I can never think of a new topic these days.  So, you can run into marketing burnout.  It’s a tough balancing act too.  You can do limited marketing and expect people to flock to your book because you know it’s good.  Yet, there are so many good books out there that you can’t depend entirely on your blurb and cover art.  On the other hand, you can’t scream about your book everywhere until you’re blue in the face.  It can come off as being too pushy and people might tune you out.  So, you need to find balance, which is unique from author to author.

To this day, I find marketing to be the hardest part.  Doubt I fully understand it or know what I’m doing because I’m too in love with the creation side of things.  I’ve been told that I turn off when the work side of things get too rough and slip back into my imagination until I feel normal again.  That makes marketing the tougher part of the author path for me and it gets more difficult every time I use a topic or site.  Hopefully things reset with a new series though, but that’s next year.

So, what do you think about marketing?  Any tips for other authors?  What do you think about marketing as a reader?

About Charles Yallowitz

Charles E. Yallowitz was born, raised, and educated in New York. Then he spent a few years in Florida, realized his fear of alligators, and moved back to the Empire State. When he isn't working hard on his epic fantasy stories, Charles can be found cooking or going on whatever adventure his son has planned for the day. 'Legends of Windemere' is his first series, but it certainly won't be his last.
This entry was posted in Thoughts and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

15 Responses to Marketing: The Agony that Can Lead to Victory

  1. I always enjoy learning something new about book worlds and characters I like, so your background snippets are tasty snacks to me.
    Plus, your fantasy/magical salesman articles are great.
    If you’re running out of ideas, recycle, and/or, adapt your older posts 😎

    Liked by 1 person

    • Looking forward to stepping back into the freedom of behind-the-scenes stuff. I figure I can do character introductions for the cast of the next series and delve more into the vampires. 😀

      I’ve revisited posts in the past and might do it again down the road. Be interesting to look back at the early ones and see how far I’ve come. To be honest, September through November has been at least planned out for posts. December is in the air for the finale though.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. L. Marie says:

    Sigh. Marketing is tough. A friend hired a publicity person to do her marketing for her. But a lot of us don’t have that kind of money.

    Like

  3. Marketing sucks. It sucks out the soul and makes me want to die. I like drafting new material the best. I do what I can, and I doubt its enough. I have to make room for my slice of happiness in there too. When I quit having fun, I’ll give the whole thing up. If I did much more marketing, that’s what would happen.

    Liked by 2 people

  4. I hate marketing. I consider it the only part of writing that is real work. I mean, I’m not saying there’s no work involved in the other stages, but I enjoy them – especially the actual initial writing stage – enough that it doesn’t feel like work. Marketing, on the other hand, feels like work. Unfortunately, it’s something you can’t skip, even if you keep it to a minimum. Most of my time is taken up with marketing related tasks right now, and it sucks! I’m sort of enjoying the challenge of coming up with slightly different content for all the blogs promotion will be happening on, but would still rather be doing some actual writing.

    People getting sick of hearing my name is a worry for me with my plan to produce all my backlist in audio. I want to make people aware of all the books becoming available in audio, but I also don’t want people to say, “Oh, it’s just her again,” and ignore the posts.

    Liked by 1 person

    • It’s the hardest part to get a lot of fun and freedom from. You can have fun, but you’re expected to be serious a lot. Freedom is tougher since there are guidelines people throw about. A lot more of my time is marketing too. A necessary return to reality in a way.

      Oversaturation and overexposure is a big problem. You hit a point where things are working and then you push just a little further into disaster. Many don’t even realize when they’re part of the scenery. Happened to me on a few sites.

      Like

  5. The marketing conundrum is a doozy. I think the only way to reach readers cheaply is through some kind of mailing list. The problem there is getting dedicated folks to sign up. Very hard.Throwing money at the issue is not the answer either.

    Like

    • Mailing lists are popular, but do they sell books? They’re reminding me of blog tours and cover reveals. Everyone is doing them, so just become static and routine. Sadly, I’ve seen people get further by buying expensive promo packages.

      Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s