When I published my first book through Create Space my knowledge of marketing meant taking a grocery list to Walmart not promoting my book. Even other writers didn’t prepare me for what needed to be done in order to get my book in the hands of readers. They floated in the same boat along with me. To make matters worse I still failed to set up a plan by the time I wrote my second book. I soon realized no one would beat down my doors to tell me how to grease the skids a bit so my name would become linked to my products, which in this case, was writing. My first step into marketing was to create a blog.
Why a blog is important –
Drives traffic to your website
Converts traffic to winning fans & generating interest
Opportunity to be an expert
Promote your beliefs, charity, ideas, creativity
Creates an audience
Generates anticipation for your product or book
Research & interests help gather people into your fan base
This becomes part of your brand or who you are as a small business person or in my case a writer.
This is a great place to give readers a sample of your work, have a contest, offer interviews, showcase products that have something to do with your work http://www.tierneyjames.com/2017/04/damsel-in-defense-you-say/
More words help you practice your craft, maybe even write your next book.
How to start a blog –
At this point you might groan with yet one more thing to distract you from your writing. I look at this task as an opportunity to show off my writing in other ways. I write action-adventure thrillers that demand I do a lot of research. Some of that research goes into only a paragraph in my story even though it took me weeks to find solutions to a particular problem. This is where I take that information to inform readers about places like Afghanistan. http://www.tierneyjames.com/2016/05/1906/ When I had a cancer scare I blogged about it so other women would take steps to protect themselves. I got a chance to use my wit for an uncomfortable topic. http://www.tierneyjames.com/2017/01/a-funny-thing-happened-on-my-way-to-get-a-mammogram-part-1/
I chose blogspot.com for my first try. It was easy to set up for a newbie. At some point I outgrew it and needed to change it up a bit. About that same time I started a website which required I use WordPress for my blog. I liked the security options and storage for all my posts. These are some things to consider when you consider creating a blog.
Platform – I used BlogSpot and WordPress
Choose a focus – What will you write about?
Schedule – How often to post? Jeff Goins of Writer Tribe suggests at least once a week.
Personal or Topical - This is part of finding your voice when you write.
What makes a great content/blog?
Title –Make it catchy
Opener draws people in
Main points that people might care about
Give a take away (how will your life be different by reading this?)
Types of Blog Posts:
Top 10 Reasons
Tips (how to be a great cook)
How to do or become something trending
Pep talk/Motivational story with message
Response to something going on in the news (be careful)
Rant (be careful here too!)
Pre-Sale or contest
Tips on Blogging
Frequency (once a week or once a month)
Not too long or short. 600 words is a good number
Colorful and sharp format appearance
Connect your blog on social media
Be a guest on other blogs and add your blog to the interview
Linking to other famous bloggers is a good way to get noticed like Publicity Hound.