I published my first book two months ago, but it’s not selling. I’m thinking about building a website. What do I need to know?
I see this a lot in Facebook author groups. Authors are so excited about their books that they rush through everything with the belief that having a book available is the only thing that matters. They foolishly believe the book will sell itself; they just have to sit back and watch.
Can you imagine if a clothing store did that? They just opened their doors with no advertising or promotion, then told everyone what they were selling. It wouldn’t take long for them to go out of business.
No other businesses use the launch-a-product-then-advertise model, and I think that’s one of the biggest problems authors have when it comes to book sales. Authors see themselves as artists (which they are!), but they’re also business owners. If you want to make a living writing and selling books, you have to embrace the ‘selling’ aspect of that equation.
In the next few months, I’m going to share some tips on three things authors must have to increase their visibility and sales—and you need to start these before you release your first book, not after. The three necessary pieces are:
- Your website
- Your newsletter
- Your social media presence
Why do you need to have these before you have a book? Because you want people to be able to find you as soon as your book is available. Because you want to drum up excitement about your book before it’s even released. Because you don’t want people to get excited about your work only to search for you online and not find anything about you.
PLEASE NOTE: Your website comes before your social media presence for a reason—you don’t own your social media accounts. At any time, Facebook, Instagram, or LinkedIn could shut down or delete your account for various reasons. If that happens and you only have social media accounts, your online presence disappears. Don’t let that happen! Build your website first, then worry about social media.
Until then, what questions do you have about author websites, newsletters, and social media? Send them in, and I’ll answer them in my posts.
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