Wednesday, July 27, 2016

Slow Writers and Marketing

Photo courtesy of TopRank Marketing

One advantage to being a slow writer is that I have lots of time to learn about marketing and the best ways to promote books. I figure that’s a good thing, because based on everything I’ve read, it’s takes lots of time to figure this marketing stuff out, especially if you’re an indie writer. 

I’ve bookmarked hundreds of links on the subject, some of which you may have seen listed in my Friday “Seven Writing Links” posts. Media kits, tricks to get reviews, writer platforms, mailing lists, Facebook ads—the list just keeps growing. I’d hoped to be an expert by the time I released my first book, but I no longer believe that’s going to happen. 

The problem is that book marketing is a constantly changing landscape. Tricks that worked a few years ago, no longer work. Heck, techniques that were successful six months ago are already out of date. Blog tours, for example, once considered a requirement for book releases, no longer seem to be in favor. Opinions keep changing over the best way to use Kindle Unlimited and KDP Select. The usefulness of social media for selling books seems to ebb and flow with the seasons. I suspect half (at least) of my bookmarked marketing links are now obsolete. 

So what’s a writer like me to do? Keep up with the current trends, I guess, so that when my book does come out, I’ll know what’s working at that particular moment. But deep down it’s hard for me to watch all these marketing tricks come and go without ever getting a chance to use them. My biggest fear is that all the marketing tricks will be used up by the time my book’s ready. 

Thanks for stopping by.


P.S. The one marketing tip that seems to have stood the test of time is the following:  Write a lot of books, so that readers can buy more of them after they've read your first one.  

Rats! The one marketing tip we slow writers can't use.  


  1. You're right that so much of what once worked no longer does. And yes, us slow writers are screwed.

  2. Yup. A lot of marketing advice is obsolete. And even when you try what's supposedly working, it might not work for you or your book. (My The Fall and Rise of Peter Stoller is a case in point.) It's frustrating, for sure, and I'm one of the slow writers, too, that can't just keep putting out content. It takes me about a year on average to write a book, and Peter took three! Sigh.

  3. Don't worry, there will always be new tricks for you to try. Publication is very competitive, but worth it. I'm with you, building up a body of work will work for us in the long run. I'm a slow writer too, but don't give up.

  4. Just try keeping up with it as a publisher. Some things are stable. Send out review copies and pray for lots of early good reviews.

  5. LOL, I have the exact same worry. And your one true fact I think is maybe the only true fact in the end. Here is hoping when we both get there there will still be plenty of tricks to get ourselves seen and readers to buy. Great post.

    Juneta @ Writer's Gambit

  6. Marketing is a pain. I've been working my butt if Marketing with hardly anything to show for it. And I know a lot about marketing too and different things to do. :\

    1. If ypu and Diane are having trouble, then us newbies are really in for a rough time.

  7. Great post, Ken. Marketing is an entity to itself and I don't think it's meant to be understood - LOL!! It's a bit like the lottery - we can strategically choose the numbers but when those balls come out... nothing. If I come up with a formula, I'll write a book about it and share it with the world - now, how do I go about marketing that? LOL!! Have a great week and thank you for the links on your last post. Keep the faith and keep writing :)

  8. Lol! Love this post! Especially the tip about writing a lot of books. Supposedly a good pace for self-pubs is 3-4 books a year (I've heard). Here's where I snort a laugh because my snail turbo charge couldn't even pull that...not in a million years. So it's off to game plan #2...whatever that might be :)

  9. I'm sad to hear about blog hops--that's the core of my debut novel marketing effort. Well, I'm doing a Kindle Scout campaign also which is just about over. I do agree--I don't really know what to do. I run online classes--last year they were wildly successful. This year, they limped along. Marketing was exactly the same. Sigh.

  10. This sort of explains something for me. I feel like a lot of the marketing advice I get is contradictory. Maybe that's just because some (or most) of the advice I get is already out of date.