THE POWER OF THE BLOG – HOW BLOGGING WILL HELP ME TO PROMOTE MY NEWLY PUBLISHED NOVEL
A guest post by Jo Parfitt
Sunshine Soup is now available from Amazon – see the direct link on this page
As a publisher and author I know the harsh truth – regardless of how darn good a book is, no one will buy it if no one knows about it.
Sure, if you are published by a publishing giant who is prepared to plough thousands of pounds into a publicity campaign you will sell books. But these days, mainstream publishers prefer to publish people with a massive publicity machine of their own behind them – in other words – celebrities.
Well, I don’t know about you, but I am not a celebrity. And so, being the kind of gal who would rather make 100% of the profit from selling a book myself, than the 7% a publisher would offer me, I choose to be a publisher and not just an author.
These days, anyone can be a publisher, but not anyone can sell books. However, thanks to social media, it has never been easier to promote your book online.
As I have just published my 28th book (but my first novel) I decided that it was high time I used the power of social media to promote Sunshine Soup. Here, below, is just how:
Phase 1 – growing a fanbase
1 I have been blogging for a while now, but it was only in the last 15 months that I realized I needed to blog three times a week, if I were to create the kind of following I needed. So, that’s what I did. I also did the Ultimate Blog Challenge back in April, to give my list a boost. It worked.
2 I have used Twitter for two years and use that to find relevant media and connect and share with people whom I hope will read my blog. You can find me @joparfitt
3 I have a Facebook page for my publishing company, Summertime Publishing, where I post details of all the books and authors I work with. My blog posts are all Tweeted and go straight to Facebook and LinkedIn too.
4 I have sent a monthly newsletter for nine years now. The Monthly Inspirer is sent to all those who sign up for my free report How to Write Your Life Stories – The Inside Secrets via my website
5 I post my Monthly Inspirer on my blog too every month.
Phase 2 – getting publicity for Sunshine Soup
1 Now that I have my fanbase I was able to reach out to the 1000 or so who take my Inspirer, the 100 or so who follow my blog, the random 200 or so, who find my blog every day, the 100 or so who ‘like’ my new Facebook page and the 1300 or so who follow me on Twitter.
2 A month ahead of publication I asked everyone who gets my Inspirer to do me a favour… I asked them if I could guest post on their blog during my launch week (17-21 October). I also asked if they would like to review the book, interview me or publish an extract. I suggested they might like to write an Amazon review, tweet a link to the Amazon sales page, mention the book (with a link) on Facebook and generally shout about my book.
3 My Inspirer goes to 1000, remember. I put the content of my Inspirer on my blog, then I tweeted the blog, sent it to my Facebook page and retweeted it a few times.
4 The result was that within 24 hours I had received over 20 offers to promote my book. This was one of them, so too was Zigazag. Over the ensuing days I have continued to receive an offer of help every hour or so.
5 So now I have to write a lot of guest posts!
Phase 3 – during launch week
1 Now I will set up a Google alert for Sunshine Soup and ensure I ‘catch’ every time someone mentions me.
2 I will go to every blog, Facebook page or whatever and join in the discussions.
3 I will thank everyone who mentions me and generally contribute.
4 I will retweet every blog or tweet I receive.
5 I will link every piece of coverage to my own blog.
Without a doubt my blog is key to the promotion of Sunshine Soup. But, if it weren’t for the effort I had made building relationships with the kind folk, like Jo Castro, who have offered to support me, I may never have been so fortunate.
Blogging is brilliant, but it is only when you also build relationships with bloggers that you can really leverage the power of the blog.
Jo Parfitt – author of Sunshine Soup, nourishing the global soul. Out now. Price £8.47 and available on Amazon. Find out more at www.joparfitt.com, www.summertimepublishing.com and www.expatbookshop.com