Sunday, April 10, 2011
AUTHOR BLOGS-DO'S, DON'TS, TIPS
For authors, a blog, or two, can be an important marketing tool. It is a great way to build readership and to 'strut your stuff.' There are some do's and don'ts so here are a few tips.
Don't get into people's faces about your book. If your blog looks like an add people will avoid it like the plague.
Don't scatter your posts on a million topics. You can't be an expert in all areas and people will soon discover that you are just filling the pages to get attention.
Don't take on topics if you have no expertise or interest. readers don't like shallow writing.
Don't rant. You don't want to come off as crazy or weird, unless that is your marketing strategy.
Don't fill your blog with tons of adds-if you have any-be selective.
Do find a niche. As a writer, you must be passionate about something. If it is the topic of your book, that is great, so you'll want to post about issues that your book addresses. When appropriate you can insert a reference to your book. You can also write about the art of writing, How To's, and be a place to visit for guidance.
Don't allow open 'ID or anonymous' for comments. This is just me, but it opens the door to massive amounts of spammer messages. If someone has to put a real email address they are less likely to load you up with spam.
Do offer tips. People love free advice and like to hear what others think work or don't work.
Do be honest.
Do have Favorite Links and a Blog Roll. This is where you can link to your web site, your publisher, other authors and sites that might pertain to your topics.
Do write about things that are of real concern to you. It is okay to be passionate.
Do fill in the Labels or Tag section below your blog. These are what SEO's pick up on. BE SURE that your first sentence or two contains words that you use in these Labels or tags. Again, this is for SEO. BE SURE TO PUT YOUR NAME IN YOUR LABELS
Do make sure that you have enabled your blog with SHARE buttons (Twitter, FB, etc)
Do vary the nature of content. Find videos on YouTube that are germane and copy the html embedd code and post on your blog. Have guests blogs. Have some opinions, some straight facts, etc. Post Cinchcasts that are audio reports (Cinhcast.com).
Do make your links live so others just click and go to the link page.
Do post as often as you can.
TIPS FOR TOPICS:
Go to Google Insights and see what is trending and what is a hot topic. You can also see who and where there may be an interest in your topics.
See what is trending for topics on Twitter and Yahoo.
Ask others if they will share a gust blog with you on a periodic basis.
Set up a set of questions (say 10) and invite others to answer them. These can be author interviews, expert interviews, survivor interviews, etc.
Some sites allow and encourage a re-posting of their blog-wider exposure is good.
Search for articles-there are many sites that offer free articles on just about any topic.
The key is to write about things you care about. Be helpful, offer advice and tips, be honest and caring in your topics. Never defame another author or blogger. And, don't be concerned if you don't get tons of comments. People live busy lives and often will not comment on your blog. Post often and try to thank those who comment on your posts.