In this episode, I’m going to share the first step in the Authorneer’s Journey.
“What is the Authorneer’s Journey?” you may ask.
Well, it is one of the types of Author’s Journey. Authorneers are authors who mindfully build their author platform, work artfully to bring out their inner author, and engineer their authorpreneurship. In other words, they take writing a book and building business around it seriously.
Not every author wants or needs to be an authorneer and travel the Authorneer’s Journey. And that’s OK. However, by learning the steps it takes to be one, you can greatly improve the results of your book, even if you decide not to build an author-based business.
This process I’m going to share over several episodes works best for nonfiction books, but parts of the framework work for novelists, as well. I invite you to listen even if you think it doesn’t apply to you because you never know what golden nugget you’ll find!
Audio for Episode 3: The Authorneer’s Journey, Part 1
Runtime: 10 minutes, 14 seconds
Transcript for Episode 3: The Authorneer’s Journey, Part 1
NOTE: Due to some ad libbing, this may not be an exact transcript.
The first step in the Authorneer’s Journey…and that is Marketing. Yep, before you write a word or even an outline, you need to think a little bit about the marketing.
Now don’t get scared – you don’t need to create the full marketing plan at this point, but you do need to think about your book in terms of how you will promote it.
The first piece of marketing I suggest you think about is your online presence.
How will you mention your book on your website? Will it be a page on an already established website? Or will you launch a book-dedicate website? Although having a book dedicated website can help you brand the book, that may not be what you want. It might work better for your long-term marketing goals to dedicate a section of your website to the book.
I’ve done both. I had a dedicated site for the first edition of Home Sweet Home Page, which helps authors, speakers, and coaches create more effective home pages, but eventually took it down and merged it into my main website. This means there are probably broken links out there that may hurt my search engine optimization.
I also have a dedicated website for Public Speaking Super Powers, which makes sense because the work I do to help people unleash their inner public speaking superhero is separate from my main business of helping people become successful authors.
Regardless of whether you create a page on your site or create a new website for your book, you need to be thinking about what content you’ll need for it now.
Another piece of your online presence you need to start thinking about is your social media presence. Which platforms are you currently on? Are there platforms that you aren’t on now, but you’ll want to be on once your book is launched? If so, start building your presence there now.
Make sure your social media presence is consistent with your website, as well. Now is a good time to do a simple audit of your online presence and make sure you are presenting a cohesive brand.
The next piece of your marketing is critical: Your email list. Do you have one? If not, start building it now! You want a list of people who want to read your book before it launches so they can help you launch strong.
If you have one already, congratulations! Now is the time to make sure it is healthy. Are you sending emails out on a regular schedule? Do you have a decent open rate? If not, how can you fix that? One way to fix a low open rate is to clean your list of people who just never open your emails by running a re-engagement campaign.
Again, you’re not doing any of this right now. You’re just thinking about what needs to be done and documenting it so you can weave those tasks into your overall book writing, publishing, and launching plan.
Next up, think about what you might want to do to launch your book. But before I go into that, here’s a quick commercial break.
Are you ready to begin your Legacy Creation Hero’s Quest and become an Authorneer?
Download the Authorneering 101 Checklist, which lays out the steps you need to take to design and build your author platform, working artfully to bring out your inner author, and engineer your own authorpreneurship.
Hi! And welcome back to The Author Switch, a podcast dedicated to helping aspiring and new authors turn on The Author Switch to success in their mind. This is your host Carma Spence and before the break, I told you what the Authorneer’s Journey is about and started sharing the first step in that journey: Marketing. I talked about your online presence – both your website and social media – and your email list. Next up is your book launch strategy.
Are you going to do a big splashy launch so you can get to Amazon Bestseller Status? Or something smaller? Perhaps you want to do a long-term launch and promote your book slowly over the course of a year. Maybe you’ll do both!
What kinds of promotional activities do you think you’ll want – and have time and resources – to do? Here are some ideas:
If you want to go for Amazon Bestseller, you will need a book launch team. How will you build this team? Will you create a private Facebook group for them? How will you keep them motivated and engaged?
Will you hold any special events to promote your book? These can include book signings, workshops, webinars, a series of live videos, an online challenge. The possibilities are endless. What would work best for your ideal readers and your specific book? Get creative!
For example, when I launched the first edition of Home Sweet Home Page, I held a virtual open house. I plan on doing so again with the release of the second edition next year. For Public Speaking Super Powers, I held a live launch party complete with superhero-themed décor and encouraged people to wear their favorite superhero T-shirts to the event.
Will you do a book tour? You can do this live by doing book signings at bookstores in your area, but I recommend considering a virtual book tour instead. With a virtual book tour, bloggers and podcasters can review your book, host you as a guest, or interview you. This is a great way to get in front of other people’s audiences while providing value and promoting your book.
Will you attempt to get press coverage? Think about how your book links to upcoming events, national observances, or local color. You’ll want to develop a digital press kit and think about what kinds of press releases you’ll develop and how you will distribute them.
Will you use video in your marketing? How will you use it? For 57 Secrets for Branding Yourself Online, I did a series of virtual book readings. I would record myself reading an excerpt from my book at different locations. I did one reading on the Queen Mary and another at the Getty Museum, as well as several other locations. Remember, you can use pre-recorded video or live video – or both to promote your book.
And finally, remember to update your Amazon Author Page. If this is your first book, you’ll have to create one once the book is listed on Amazon. If you already have one, now is a good time to think about sprucing it up.
There are a lot more marketing things you can do to promote your book, but what I’ve covered in this podcast episode will give you a good start.
Don’t worry over the final details until your book has been sent off to your first-round editor. Right now you’re just coming up with some initial plan ideas.
Why are you doing this before you write your book? Good question! Some of your ideas might require you to mention them either within your book or in your book’s back matter. You can’t go back and add them in after the fact, so you want to think of them now before your manuscript is too far-developed.
I hope the information I’ve shared has given you some insight and inspiration. In my next mini-seminar episode I’ll cover the second step in the Authorneer’s Journey: The Pre-Work. Yep, you still are not writing your book yet. But the pre-work I’ll discuss will help you write a better book faster.
If you don’t want to wait for all the episodes in this series to come out, then I recommend that you go to carmaspence.com/authorneering101 and get your copy of my Authorneering 101 Checklist. Don’t worry, it’s free.
What golden nuggets did you find in this episode? I’d love to hear what you think. Go to authorswitch.com, find this episode, and leave a comment.
This is Carma Spence your guide to turning on your Author Switch, signing off.
About The Author Switch
The Author Switch is a podcast dedicated to helping experts, entrepreneurs, and small business owners turn on The Author Switch — and keep it on — so that they can leverage the power of books to take their businesses to a whole new dimension. You learn more about the show on its page.