Authors and Blogging: Here’s The Deal (Part 2)

Authors who don’t blog are missing out on some really great opportunities to grow their lists, build trust with their readers and networking with other authors. It takes several times of coming in contact with you before enough trust is built up for a sale to be made. This is why those email campaigns are so successful and so many do them.

It’s never a bad idea to give your audience another way to get to know you and your work. Also, when you write guest posts for other blogs, you’re creating links to your own site, called linkbacks. Search engines love to count those up for rankings so every one you can manage will help your traffic grow organically.

So what do you post and how often? That also depends on you. If you don’t feel you have much to say, share from a blog you enjoy reading or offer other authors a guest spot. This will minimize the number of posts you have to write yourself. If you’re unsure if you’re giving too much or too little, ask! Send out a poll and ask your readers what content they care about most and how often they’d like to hear from you.

What to say? There are a few ways to go. You can be the super professional who only posts valuable content that your readers might be interested in, or you can make it super personal and provide inside looks into your writing process or your life as you write your manuscript. Or you can do a combination of both. Your readers will probably just be thrilled to hear from you unless you’re posting several times a day. In which case, that might be a little much. When in doubt, poll your audience.

Authors and Blogging: Here’s The Deal (Part 1)

 

Does an author have to blog? The simple answer is no. Of course not. Writing is a business and it’s up to you to decide what is right for your business. The question keeps coming up and authors ask me all the time whether they should blog and if so, how much should they blog. Here’s the deal…

Blogging isn’t for everyone, nor is it for every business. Many authors don’t have time for blogging and some have time but don’t know what to write. Before you can make the decision, you need to know what your goal in blogging is. I’ve heard too many times, “Because ‘they’ say I have to.” No. You don’t.

Don’t get me wrong. Engaging your audience is critical to your success, but that can come in many forms. If you’ve got a large social media following or a large email list, it’s okay to skip it.

The formula I use on my own social media is to promote others with 50% of my posts and use 25% to promote myself and then the other 25% to engage my audience with interesting stories and updates on my writing or my life. This seems to work well since people appreciate that I share their work and they return the favor when it’s my turn.

I don’t do a standard email list with all the hooks and lures to get someone to buy. Instead, I toss out a newsletter every few weeks which has information on interesting things I’ve found, updates on my current project, usually, a tidbit of my personal life and whatever else I can think of that might help them over the next few weeks until I send out another.

In other words, it’s not a standard campaign and it’s nothing like what everyone else is doing. In fact, I still use the old school style template so everyone knows it’s an actual newsletter and not someone’s landing page. Sure, campaigns have their place, but the whole game is different for authors. We have to think outside the box and not get caught up in norms that are decided for us. In short, only you know if blogging is right for you. But if you don’t blog, have a plan for engaging your readers.

Don’t miss the next post. It’s all about the benefits of blogging and what to do if you can’t think of anything to post!