Author marketing is changing. Many authors believe that you don’t need a website, and the argument for and against author websites rages whenever new authors get together. The “for” group of authors maintain that a website is essential. The “against” authors believe that creating a page on Facebook is not only easier, but it’s more effective too. Why go to the trouble and on-going expense of your own website?
The biggest challenge with a website is getting traffic to your site. Facebook makes it simple to get traffic — all you need to do is advertise.
So, do you even need an author website?
Author marketing and your website: do you need a website?
Yes, I know. Facebook now has two billion subscribers. However, your own website has these advantages over Facebook:
- You control the website; you’re not dependent on a third party. When you rely on a global giant, your website can suddenly vanish, if the global giant changes the rules. Back in the day, authors built Myspace profiles and blogs… Then suddenly, it was over.
- Your website is on the web. Facebook is a gated network. Your Facebook pages can’t be seen on the web, but you can use Facebook to promote your website and get traffic to it.
- You have more options with a website: you can promote your website anywhere you choose, and can design it in any way you choose.
Let’s assume that you’ve decided on a website, or you have a site already, and you need traffic. Consider these three tips.
1. Make use of others’ audiences to drive traffic to your website
Guest blogging has been around for years. However, it’s not a magic bullet. Many authors launch their books with a blog tour, and that tour either ends up successful, or it can be a lot of work which doesn’t pay off for the time and energy which you invest.
Develop a strategy for guest blogging. You might write a guest post once a month, for example. Over months, your traffic will build. Be sure that you have content on your own website, so that the traffic stays, rather than bounces away immediately.
2. Use some of your profits to buy advertising, beyond Facebook
Facebook doesn’t have a monopoly on advertising. Recently, authors report success with Amazon ads. Amazon has opened up its advertising beyond authors who are in Select.
The huge benefit of Amazon advertising over Facebook is the state of mind of the audience. When you’re on Facebook, you’re chatting with friends, and making plans. You’re watching funny videos. Amazon however is a vast online shopping experience: people are there not for amusement, but to buy.
That buying intention means that if you get your ads in front of people who like your books, you’ll make more sales.
Other advertising options include:
- Google AdWords;
- Twitter ads;
- LinkedIn ads…
The advertising options for authors are huge. Experiment.
3. Leverage social media: build followers on your favorite social media websites
You want traffic to your website. Ideally, you’d like your visitors to buy a book. Sadly, most will not, for any number of reasons. However, you can build your traffic if you get visitors who’ve visited once to return.
Create a mailing list as a matter of urgency, so that you can build a list of people who are interested in what you write.
Next, consider that social media is filled with potential buyers of your books. When you build your followers on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest and other social media websites, some will visit your website, and they’ll join your mailing list.
Author marketing: consistency counts in getting traffic
I often hear authors complain about their marketing efforts. However, marketing works: you’ll make sales of your books.
Use the tips. Not only will you get more traffic, you’ll make more sales. Good luck. 🙂
Lady Saville’s Lover, A Regency Romance
She’s gorgeous, but hot-tempered, and Scottish heiress Bess Fleming takes the ton by storm. She’s refused six proposals of marriage — will Lord Darius make number seven?
Lord Darius Saville is the second son of a duke. Bess considers him a a wastrel, a gambler, and a womanizer.
He doesn’t have good words for her either. Bess overhears him call her “uncivilized.” She’s not likely to forgive him.
However, when Bess finds herself at the center of a scandal, Lord Darius offers her sanctuary. He suggests that they pretend to be engaged. That will calm the gossip.
Bess discovers that there’s more to Lord Darius than she expected. Will he save her reputation, but break her heart?