Category Archives: Marketing And Promotion

How Writers Can Build Audiences Using Newsletters | Web Design Relief

How Writers Can Build Audiences Using Newsletters | Web Design Relief

Social media advertising might seem like a good choice if you’re trying to deliver your writing to a wider audience—but this actually isn’t the most effective strategy. According to a study by McKinsey & Co., e-mail newsletters are forty times more successful at reaching your audience than social media. In 2020, e-mail users will reach four billion worldwide. And unlike the access to your social media followers that changes at the whims of each platform’s algorithms, your e-mail mailing list belongs only to you. The experts at Web Design Relief have some great tips on how writers can build their audiences using newsletters.

How To Build An Audience With E-Mail Newsletters

Know your goals. First, determine what you want to accomplish with your newsletter. Are you trying to increase book sales, attract more followers on social media, or simply get your writing in front of more readers? Then contour the content of your newsletter to that goal. Focus on only one call to action at a time so your message doesn’t get complicated and confusing.

Make subscribers want to opt in. Even the most popular writers in the world still need to win over new readers. Running a contest or giveaway is one of the best ways to entice potential subscribers to sign up for your newsletter. Just remember to clearly state that by entering your contest or drawing, entrants will be added to your mailing list. Readers may also feel a closer connection to you and your work if you offer exclusive content as a reward for joining your mailing list.

Have an enticing subject line. We’ve all subscribed to a newsletter simply to get the free goodies—and then complain about our cluttered inboxes and unsubscribe from all the newsletters we’re not reading. Make sure that your e-mail stands out and gets opened! It’s important to have a subject line that grabs attention and makes your subscribers want to click on your e-mail. However, studies show that your actual sender name may be even more important. Recipients first look at the sender’s name, so receiving an e-mail with your name in the e-mail address, rather than the newsletter title, will seem more personal—and will be more likely to be opened by the recipient.

Connect with your readers. Once someone subscribes to your newsletter, be sure your content grabs the reader’s attention. The content of your newsletter should be welcoming, relatable, and broken into short, easy-to-read paragraphs. To form a connection, speak to your audience in the second person so it seems you’re talking one-on-one to the reader.

Be consistent. Be clear about how frequently readers can expect to receive e-mail from you—and stick to the schedule. If you promise readers a weekly or monthly newsletter, make sure you can provide interesting content within that time frame. Your newsletter is an important element in your author brand. Sending your newsletter less frequently than your promised delivery schedule—or at haphazard, random intervals—would be inconsistent branding and might damage the author brand you are trying to create. Conversely, sending more e-mails than you promised will annoy readers and cause them to either unsubscribe, block, or even report you as a spammer. Avoid these potential problems by adhering to the schedule.

Use visuals. The average recipient of your e-mail spends a mere 51 seconds reading it. Images help your readers get a general sense of your message without having to read every word of it. Create visuals that not only make it easy for readers to grasp your message quickly, but also ensure that your content is understood even if it isn’t completely read.

By following these tips, you’ll be able to craft a newsletter that your subscribers will enjoy opening and reading—which will make it easier for you to grow your audience!

 

Question: Which author newsletter is your favorite? Why?

How To Focus Your Author Blog To Attract Book-Buying Readers | Web Design Relief

How To Focus Your Author Blog To Attract Book-Buying Readers | Web Design Relief

You may be surprised to learn that the skills needed to be a creative writer aren’t the same as those required to be an effective blogger. Unlike short stories, poetry, novels, or memoirs, an author blog requires some mastery of networking, sharing, and making connections online. The marketing experts at Web Design Relief know being a successful blogger will require both writing interesting content and having a targeted promotional strategy that will keep your audience engaged and sell your books. Here’s how to focus the content of your author blog to best attract book-buying readers and boost your sales.

Smart Ways To Focus Your Author Blog Content

Ask Yourself These 10 Questions:

  • Who is your primary reader?
  • What is your main goal as a blogger?
  • What will be the takeaway value of your author blog?
  • Do you want your blog to be casual and practical or deeply serious and thoughtful?
  • What do you want your blog to look like?
  • What will separate your blog from any other author blog?
  • How often will you post?
  • How will you promote your blog?
  • Will your blog be separate from your author website, and if so, will it have its own name?
  • Do you have your first blog post ready to go?

Create An Editorial Calendar

An editorial calendar will help you stick to your schedule and keep your content frequent and focused, but not repetitive. By posting on your blog consistently, you’ll encourage your audience to visit your website often, where they will also see information about your creative writing and the availability of any books for sale. Learn how to create your own editorial calendar here!

Maintain Your Authenticity

To create blog posts your audience will enjoy, it’s important to find your authentic voice. Readers will sense if your posts sound forced and lose interest if there’s no real meaningful content. And you’ll definitely lose followers if your posts are nothing more than thinly veiled buy my book sales pitches. Ask yourself: What would I want to read about on a blog? The writing process? Living with an author from a pet’s point of view? Grammar tips? That’s what you should write about.

Listen To Your Audience

It’s important to be open to feedback from your audience—you’ll build a stronger following if readers feel they can engage with you and be part of the process. Be sure to enable comments on your blog posts and provide a private messaging system or contact form so readers can reach out to you. You’ll be able to gauge the topics, length, and types of posts based on the comments and response you receive. When your audience feels heard and involved, they’ll be more receptive to buying your book.

Include A Call-To-Action

Once your blog posts have captured your audience’s attention, guide them with strategic calls-to-action to make your blog a powerful networking tool. Encourage readers to follow you on social media, post a comment, check out your events calendar, join your mailing list—and occasionally, to buy your book!

Creating a blog that book-buyers will enjoy reading requires some careful planning and forethought. Fine-tune the format, frequency, and purpose of your blog until you find what works best for you and your readers. With loyal followers, you’ll be able to sell more books! To help get you started, here are 40 blog post ideas for novelists, poets, and creative writers.

 

Question: Which author blogs do you enjoy reading?

Tweet, Tweet! 20 Fan-Growing Tweet Ideas For Writers | Web Design Relief

Tweet, Tweet! 20 Fan-Growing Tweet Ideas For Writers | Web Design Relief

Using the social media platform Twitter is a great way for writers to build their audiences and gain fans. But the marketing experts at Web Design Relief know that the key to success on Twitter is to make sure every tweet isn’t a “buy my book” promotional push—you need better tweet ideas! People want to engage with you as a person and a writer, not as a pushy salesperson. You’ll grow your fan base more effectively if you tweet about what you’re reading, the causes you support, articles you’ve enjoyed, and even some photos of your pets (#caturday is a popular social media hashtag!). If you need some inspiration to get started, we have some fan-growing tweet ideas that will organically build your audience.

20 Fan-Growing Tweet Ideas Especially For Writers

#1. Actively locate your fans—don’t wait for readers to find you among the millions of accounts on Twitter! Use the search tool in Twitter to check hashtags relevant to your interests, find the followers of some of your favorite accounts, and locate people to follow who might be interested in you and follow you back.

#2. Tweet about the books you love! And if the authors of those books are on Twitter, don’t be shy—tag them in the tweet!

#3. Mention your favorite TV shows. There are lots of diehard TV fans on Twitter, and many of them enjoy reading too. Check out some accounts and hashtags that deal with popular shows, and start interacting!

#4. Retweet other people’s tweets. There’s power in the retweet—you’ll make your timeline something your followers will genuinely enjoy sifting through. Be sure to add a comment when you retweet to take the engagement one step further.

#5. Use memes. Humor is a great way to connect with your fans and followers. Reading- and writing-related memes are excellent tweet ideas and will best engage your audience, but anything you find funny will work! Just be sure to use memes the right way by crediting the creator.

#6. Ask for recommendations. Requesting advice from your Twitter followers is a great way to get them to interact with YOU. Ask for recommendations on which book to read next, binge-worthy TV shows, recipes, etc.

#7. Post photos. Having a photo in a tweet boosts engagement. You can tweet photos of book-related events, what you’re currently reading, the cover of the latest journal to publish your work, or the old standby: cute pets!

#8. Start a hashtag. Have something specific you want to discuss or do with people? Start your own hashtag. People have started small writing challenges, book clubs, and more with a hashtag on Twitter.

#9. Be funny! You don’t have to have the skills of a professional comedian—even a bad pun or “dad joke” will work. Humorous tweets are some of the most popular and offer the best odds of going viral.

#10. Tweet about literary journals. The majority of literary journal social media followers will be writers and readers, so the Twitter accounts of literary magazines are great places to see and be seen! Tweet about something you read in a recent issue and comment on the journal’s tweets! If you get published in a literary magazine, be sure they have your Twitter handle. Most will happily tag you in tweets about the issue your work appears in when it’s published.

#11. Know the writing hashtags: #amwriting #amreading #writerslife #amediting #writing #writingprompt #WIP #writingcommunity are some examples.

#12. Offer praise. If you enjoy a tweet you’ve read on Twitter, tweet about it, retweet it, and tag the person who created it in your tweet. You’ll boost your odds of getting your own retweets.

#13. Give shout-outs. Boost some of the accounts you follow by giving them shout-outs on your Twitter account. In this way, you’ll encourage your mutual followers to do the same for you!

#14. Use threads. If you have a funny or interesting story that is longer than the character limit of one tweet (currently 280 characters), utilize threads! Just keep replying to your previous tweet so that your audience can see/click on any of them and immediately read the entire story.

#15. Share interviews. Post a link to any interviews about you or your work. It’s a great way to usher people into learning more about you and your writing. Also share any interviews you conduct.

#16. Post about what you’re reading right now. Give your thoughts on how the plot is progressing, but don’t give away any spoilers!

#17. Play with polls. Conducting a poll is a fun, simple way to engage with your followers and encourage them to interact with you. HINT: Use a popular hashtag in your poll tweet so that more people will see it and participate, since polls are only active for a short while.

#18. Humble-brag about your successes. Don’t be shy about mentioning your accomplishments! Did you get an acceptance in a dream magazine? Win a contest? Speak on a panel? Appear on a list of some sort? Get into an awesome writing retreat? Share the good news! Just be careful to sound grateful, not pompous.

#19. Follow the best-known literary Twitter accounts. Here are just a few: @NewYorker, @WritersDigest, @StephenKing, @writing_tips, @thewritelife, @rgay, @JoyceCarolOates, @parisreview, @MargaretAtwood, and of course, @WritersRelief! Here’s how to use Twitter like a best-selling author.

#20. Join in on trending topics. Find ways to connect what’s trending with writing and reading—the topic doesn’t have to directly connect to you. By thinking outside the box, you’ll reach more potential followers and fans.

Remember, Twitter can definitely be a powerful marketing tool, but you won’t grow a strong follower base without showing your audience your genuine self. If you scroll through your favorite authors’ Twitter accounts, odds are you’ll see more than just promotional material—you’ll see some engagement featuring their interests and opinions too.

 

Question: What’s your favorite Twitter hashtag?

10 Easy Ways To Drive More Traffic To Your Author Website | Web Design Relief

Once you have an author website that works well for your genre and acts as your online business card, it’s time for the next step: getting your readers and potential new fans to visit! Your author website should act as an online hub where you can showcase your latest publication credits, offer links to purchase… Continue Reading

New Year; New You: How To Revamp Your Author Persona And Grow Your Fan Base | Web Design Relief

It’s the start of a new year! What better time to give your brand identity a facelift? The experts at Web Design Relief know that a fresh approach to your online author persona can help you achieve your goals as a writer, increase the size of your fan base, and find the right voice for… Continue Reading


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