Guest Post

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Sunday, January 9, 2022

Marketing, let me count the ways

cj Sez: Re that marketing budget I said I needed to create for 2022? Last week I used $10 of January’s budget. I have to admit, I haven’t yet decided on an upper limit for the year. I’ll most likely let my results determine what the limit is. Kind of fun to test the unknown waters of advertising to announce my name/book titles and then wait and see if anyone noticed. I’ve used Facebook in the past but not Amazon. Any suggestions?

Source: HotSpot

  A primary part of my marketing plan is this blog. I use Blogger which is free, but I have to include the annual fees for GoDaddy hosting and the domain names.

  Lyrical Pens launched on June 22, 2009, when I clicked “publish” on my first post. You can click on the date to read it. Joyce Scarbrough ( ), a prolific author and confederate in the Mobile Writers’ Guild, was my first (and only) commenter. (Thanks, Joyce, although it seems to have started a one-of trend…sigh.)
  The blog started as a marketing tool for three writing/critique-group buddies (Mahala Church, Tracy Hurley, and me) who wanted to “get our names out there” to tempt fans to follow the famous authors we envisioned.

  Mahala and Tracy had just co-founded the Mobile Writers’ Guild, and I had joined them as a charter member and Secretary…or maybe that was Secretary/Treasurer (faulty memory). Go-getter Tracy worked through the technical part of building the website, and it hasn’t changed all that much since it began. Sadly, Tracy died in 2010, and Mahala and I carried on. Today, Lyrical Pens is still a viable marketing tool, but where once there were three authors, there is now one—Mahala retired from the site in 2016.

I offer up two small pieces of advice if you’re thinking about blogging:

  First piece comes with a caveat: “To thine own self be true.” That is to say, identify your goal for the blog and write your posts with that in mind. Do you want to share tidbits of personal data to grow your relationship with fans and readers? Do you want to share professional writing stuff for fellow authors? Maybe it’s a combination of both, which is where Lyrical Pens sits, although it does lean more toward the professional writing information.

  Second, a blog is a great way to build an author brand if you link your posts to your author Facebook page, Twitter, Instagram, Goodreads, et al. Be sure to embed buy links and book trailers. Did you notice I wrote “author Facebook page?” I have two FB pages, one for personal and one for author stuff. Your personal social media followers aren’t there to read your sales pitches; they want to share a conversation with you. Keep the advertising low-key on your personal sites. A new book notice or reminder is fine, but heavy slugs of “Buy My Book” advertising in every post might drive away some of your new Friends.

  Another important marketing consideration: Newsletter or not to newsletter? That is the question. I’m still thinking.


Etcetera and P.S.A.

  Excellent blog for anyone looking to write a publishable novel…


  YOU TOO CAN honor Betty White's 100th birthday ON JANUARY 17. DONATE TO GOOD FORTUNE FARM REFUGE.

  Every dollar goes a long way for homeless animals. Food, dewormer, a warm blanket, a vet visit. Easy-Peasy to help those who help the helpless, and you can do it from the comfort of your home.

  Think about it and put the date on your calendar, please?


  That’s it for today’s post. You-all guys keep on keeping on, and I’ll try to do the same. 

P.S.  The Haunted Bookshop has signed copies of my stories in stock. TO ORDER my author-graphed books or any book of your choice on-line from a favorite, indie bookstore, contact The Haunted Bookshop here:

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