From Author to Authorpreneur: Six savvy steps to success
by Angie Waikel
In the saturated world of indie publishing, it’s not enough anymore to just write a book, submit it, and wait for the money to roll in. Smart authors have to treat their books as they would any business. This may sound a bit off-putting to some, but in fact, it’s not as intimidating as you think. There are only six main steps to becoming a savvy authorpreneur:
1. Build a Brand
You do this by starting a blog and building a social media presence.
If your specialty is in Non-fiction, such as Business, Self-Help or How-To books: Building your brand is easy, just write about what you know!
If your specialty is Fiction, or other books in a variety of genres: YOU become the brand. Use the unique tone and style you write your books with and carry that value into your other writings.
2. Establish Your Online Presence
First and foremost, you need a website. The shift of consumer consciousness has dictated that businesses who have no website cannot be trusted.
Not only is it a matter of trust, but as like any other business, authors are judged by their website – so make sure yours is clean, up to date, and engaging.
3. Know Your Audience
One of the key components in successful marketing is knowing where to find your audience, and then knowing how to connect and engage them to build that relationship and trust.
Your time and money is precious, so only advertise in areas where your targeted audience would hang out. It helps to put yourself in their shoes – where would you go or what would you search for?
4. Invest In Yourself
When it comes to book publishing, you can only go so far on cheap services. For example, don’t make the rookie mistake of thinking $10 for a cover is a good deal. I assure you, it is not – and about 35% of my clientele have come to me only after learning this valuable lesson.
Remember: You are in business to sell a product, and how your product is presented can make or break a sale.
In order to have a book armed for success right out of the gate, a book needs the best care applied to it. Invest in professional editing, design, formatting, etc. to create a high-quality product.
If you don’t invest the money into your book, people will notice that. And if you don’t care about the way your product looks, why should they buy it?
Luckily there are options such as crowdfunding, a brilliant concept which has been a godsend to many authors who need a little financial boost to get their book funded and attract readers at the same time.
5. Pre-Promotion / Pre-sale
Many new authors fail to take advantage of this valuable asset and end up missing out on all the momentum and excitement-building, potentially leaving a lot of money on the table.
Months or weeks ahead of time, announce the new release of your book and offer a pre-sale, perhaps including an excerpt of the first few chapters, with or without a discounted price. This will entice your audience to pre-buy, and start building a buzz around your book.
6. Maintain Your Reader Relationship
Keep your audience engaged with valuable content whether it’s sending out a weekly or monthly newsletter or updating your social media with fresh content at least one to two times a week.
It’s important to treat your writing as a business! This does require a lot of time and effort, but it has its rewards. You will be taken more seriously, which means you will enjoy more success.