5 Reasons Authors Need To Think Offline
Welcome guest writer, Sarah Butland.
With electronic publishing making it easier today than it ever was to author a book it is interesting to see who decides to write what. It is still not an easy way to make money though it is definitely easier as an avid writer can generate a lot of content and have it available in just a few minutes for people to download.
But like anything, there needs to be a balance for it all to work out for the best. There are some great authors out there with awesome ideas, the passion and skill to write a book many will love and yet they are being buried online by those who are just writing on a whim to see what happens.
Balancing the writing with the marketing solely online can truly be a challenge yet a lot of us cringe at the idea of hosting a book launch or signing. It can be disheartening to go through the trouble of scheduling an in person event and have no one show up but it can also be the key to unlocking your future.
Writing can be such a solitary career which may be why many people choose it. The idea of having their picture taken or presenting to an audience can be terrifying for those who would rather hide behind a keyboard and simply write. Facing your fears can put you above the rest even if the masses are terrifying or non-existent for a while.
Here are five reasons you need to go offline:
#1 Stand Out
Not everyone is brave like you and while hiding behind a screen can help you write the erotica or murder scene that will make your parents blush you can easily get lost in the crowd. Connecting with bookstores to host your signings or launches will help you network with those in charge of ordering new books.
#2 Readers Still Buy Hard Copies
Ebooks definitely have their place and their fans and can be a fast way for you to get your story out. Think outside the speed though and know that fans still like to buy hardcopies, especially around the holidays so they can gift them to friends. Being approachable and having the ability to personally sign your book will encourage many buyers to check with you first.
#3 Your Book is Your Business Card
Going offline for book marketing allows many more options including passing out bookmarks and honestly, if you don’t have a paperback version of your book handing these out just won’t make sense. You can leave your paperback in a doctor’s office for waiters to get hooked on a chapter and remember your name to be able to buy later. Be sure to include a sticker on the cover so it stays in the office and people can know you’re local and how to contact you.
#4 Book Clubs
Book clubs may be harder to find but they do still exist and love reading books by local authors. Yes, there are plenty of online book clubs throughout social media it’s just difficult to near impossible to stand out there and get commitment from readers. Members of the online clubs would love to download your free ebook but they download everyone’s free ebook and may get to them whenever they feel like it.
Being in person at the book club, gifting a host a free copy, encourages them to actually read your book before your planned visit and think about it to be able to ask you intelligent questions about the characters. This will also allow you to encourage online reviews and ask them for their opinion on a new storyline or which character they’d like to know more about.
Social media is the online queen of networking tools yet it still has its limits. An abundance of Facebook friends or Twitter followers is a great thing, don’t get me wrong, but having a personal team of supporters can be much better. Friends you meet on a regular basis will love to support you and even if they can’t afford your book right away they will be sure to talk to their other friends about your book. Word of mouth is the best and most cost-effective advertising method so take advantage of it.
Among the ever growing amount of new authors, if you want to sell your books or simply gain readers it’s important to be seen. While everyone finds it easy to “be” online it is easier to get noticed if you go offline. Be different, be confident and get out there in front of the crowds.
Sarah Butland was born in Ontario, the year was 1982. She now resides in Nova Scotia, Canada with her high school sweetheart and son.
The creator of BananaBoy and author of the Adventures Of Sammy series beginning with Sending You Sammy, her first published children's book, Butland dreams big and starts small. Brain Tales – Volume One and Arm Farm added to her in print collection of books among her blog (www.SarahButland.com), articles for magazines and many other forms of writing.