If you are an author who wants to get published, you need a website, blog, Facebook, LinkedIn, Twitter, YouTube, and other social media platforms. Publishers expect the author to play the primary role in social media marketing. You can hem and haw, but most book professionals are going to insist you build your author brand online. Luckily, Swenson Book Development, LLC assists authors with their platform development. We can design, develop, administer, and manage your social media platforms for you and teach you how to use them effectively so you can spend less time learning technical code and more time writing.
There is a catch. If you want to publish and sell books, you have to learn the language. Read, research, and listen. Pay attention. Learn about potential market resources. Authors create the success of their book in sales.
So today I want to talk about a growing resource for authors, agents, publishers, booksellers, and readers. I’m talking about tapping in to a different audience, an under-appreciated audience. Take a break from reading and start listening.
It’s an emerging forum for connecting book lovers to one another. It creates topical or fan-based communities connecting writers, readers, and publishers. Blog Talk Radio Books is a host for podcasts (they call them “shows”) all about books and book-related topics. You can listen to shows online or you can host your own. It’s easy to get started; just click through a list of hosts or recently aired shows. Shows range in content because hosts can talk about anything they want for an hour. The show can review, interview, rant, rave, query, recite, or advise.
Big house publishers have shows. So do independent presses, acquisitions editors, authors, literary agents, Average Joe and Average Jane, and your favorite bloggers. Instead of reading words on a webpage, you listen to the words from one.
The advantage of Blog Talk Radio is, unlike other community-driven forums, you don’t need a username and password in order to participate. There are no strings attached. But there are certain benefits to joining formally, like active participation.
Blog Talk Radio is a creative concept offering users endless opportunities. As with all other social media platforms, it depends how you use it. It can be a valuable resource or an enormous waste of time. If you spend the time seeking or putting out quality content, you will reap the benefits.
For writers seeking publication, you can listen to acquisitions editors discuss effective proposals and learn how to pitch a better query. Authors can host their own podcast and give pitches or excerpts or interviews. Shows reveal levels of traffic and interest; even if no one is listening at the onset, a radio show is a forum for your topic or book to be discussed. And, data aside, there are many shows geared towards helping writers get published and authors increased publicity and sales. Shows become webinars, how-to-guides, advice columns, and informal editors. They can be shared across all platforms through an easy “embed this episode” button.
Right now, I’m enjoying the wisdom of the Publishing Insiders. They discuss the importance of using social media to create an author brand, the pros and cons of e-books and self-publishing, how to get your book reviewed, and the importance of search engine optimization (SEO). Past special guests include publishing insiders like current publisher CEOs and literary agents as well as marketing gurus like Seth Godin. Though the hosts circle around the subject occasionally, I suggest listening to early shows like “Branding: The Secret to Selling More Books” and “How To Maximize Book Reviews.” I’ve included one below for your listening pleasure on author self-sabotage:
“Why (Some) Authors Fail” [click ahead to minute 25:13 to hear Arielle Ford discuss the issue]
Let Swenson Book Development, LLC hear your feedback in our comments section. If there’s a Blog Talk Radio Books show you think we should hear, post the link below!
Six or seven years ago my advice to aspiring authors of nonfiction books was to build an audience platform by blogging. An example of how critical blogging could be to securing a publishing contract can be found in the case of Ann Marie Ackermann, author of Death of an Assassin: The True Story of the German Murderer Who Died Defending Robert E. Lee. After an initial assessment of her manuscript, I had recommended she start a historical true-crime blog, and she did. In fact, the editor of the ideal book series at Kent State University Press became a fan ofRead more…