5 Tips for Blog Posts

December 15th, 2014 by Sue L Canfield

five tips for your blog postsSince your blog is your marketing foundation, you want to be sure to follow these five tips for your blog posts:

  1. Create a conversation. To do that ask questions, invite others to write guest posts, respond to reader comments.
  2. Add links to other sites with information relevant to your topic.
  3. Always add an image to your post. I take a lot of my own pictures and create images. People are more likely to read something visually appealing. Then you can also add it to your Pinterest board.
  4. Use an SEO plug in such as Yoast to be sure you're getting good SEO on every blog post.
  5. Share your blog posts on all your social media networks.

Please share your tips in the comments section!

Building Your Email List

December 8th, 2014 by Sue L Canfield

building your email listMany solopreneurs believe that email is "old school" and that no one wants to receive email marketing messages any more. Wrong! Used appropriate it's still a very powerful form of marketing. People who sign up for your email list actually want to hear from you! They chose to be on your list. Which is why it's very important not to add someone to your list without their permission.

Even if you have a solid social media presence, you want to consider having an email list. You do not have 100% control over your social media profiles. If you aren't careful and break a rule at Facebook, they can prevent you from adding new friends, promoting your posts, and can even delete your account.

So start building your list today. I recommend using MailChimp. Their free version will take you a long way.

Your Blog Choice: WordPress.org vs. WordPress.com

December 1st, 2014 by Sue L Canfield

choose wordpress.orgToday’s choice for blogging is WordPress. There are still other blogging platforms you can use. However, WordPress is the best choice in my opinion.

Even then there is a choice to be made. Many people will set up a free WordPress.com account and blog and think that’s enough. I disagree.

The better choice is to use WordPress.org. Why?

WordPress.com has limitations. And the biggest one is – you can’t sell products on the dot com site. If you’re an author wanting to sell your book from your website, using WordPress.com is not the way to go.

However, you can sell products (your book) using WordPress.org. Our sister company, Spinhead Web Design, offers a $300 Ready Set Go Blogging package to get your blog set up. There are a ton of free WordPress Video Tutorials and Transcriptions on the site as well.

What are you waiting for? Go get your blog set up with WordPress.org now!

 

Cultivate Your Readership with Your Blog

November 28th, 2014 by Sue L Canfield

cultivate your readership with your blogWherever you are in the process as an author (fiction or nonfiction), whether you have published your book or are just beginning to outline it, there are tremendous benefits to having a blog. They include:

  • Regular communication with your readers or prospective readers
  • Establishing a personal connection with readers
  • The opportunity to get feedback from your readers on your ideas, characters, what they want to read next
  • Exposure to media outlets such as online magazines, radio and TV shows, literary agents & publishers
  • Building a mailing list of people looking forward to your book – and your next book! Readers can subscribe to your blog and sign up for your mailing list and be the first to know when your book comes out.

Media outlets, literary agents, and publishers will expect you to have a solid online presence, including a blog. Other opportunities such as getting online interviews and podcast interviews are much more likely when you have an established online presence. That’s not just a blog. A solid social media presence is needed as well.

Your blog is your marketing foundation. From it all the social media stuff, Facebook, Twitter, etc., just comes from what you’ve posted at your blog.

Think of your blog like the trunk of a tree and your social media as the branches coming from that one trunk. The foliage is the result of all your hard work – sales of your book! And to get the best foliage, you must cultivate.

So what do you blog about? You could write about the details of the research you are doing for your book, your character development, any of those milestone moments when you’ve finished another chapter. Include short book excerpts to engage your readers into wanting the whole book.

It’s never too early to start marketing your book. Even if you’re just getting started, NOW is the time to start blogging and cultivating your readership.

If you’d like help with social media, we specialize in helping authors manage their social media presence. Contact Sue now for a consultation.

3 Tips to Fun & Easy Networking

November 24th, 2014 by Sue L Canfield

let's meet for coffee"Let's meet for coffee." Have you heard those words when you've met someone new at a networking event or business mixer? Is your first thought, "Oh no, they want to pitch me about their business!" If so, you may be reluctant to accept their offer. Perhaps this is one reason you don't find networking fun and easy. Because you're afraid that other people are thinking the same thing when you hand them your business card and offer to "meet for coffee."

Networking should be fun and easy! Here are three tips to help you make your next networking experience fun and easy.

  1. Ask a fun question! People want to talk about themselves and asking questions gets the ball rolling. Their answers will also tell you a lot about them and their interests. That's very important so you know how you might be able to help them in their business. Try one of these: "What's your favorite way to use Facebook?" or "Do you use Pinterest to find new recipes or fun activities to do?"
  2. Wear an interesting scarf, tie, or piece of jewelry. Wear something that will catch people's eyes. It might even be a name badge you've had made up that's unique. This is a way to get people to notice you and ask you about your scarf, tie, jewelry, or name badge. Once a conversation is started, networking is easy and fun. Sometimes the hard part is getting a conversation started. Look around and see if anyone else is wearing something interesting and comment on it. It may lead to a great conversation. So give it a try!
  3. Be the first to ask for their business card. Everyone wants to hand out and collect as many business cards as possible. Though I don't think this should be your number one goal (ask me about that), you'll have more fun and networking will be easier if you don't try to hand out the most business cards you can. You'll end up collecting a bunch anyhow if you ask first for their card. They will be delighted to give you their card and in return will ask for yours. When you ask first, you show that you are interested in them and what they do. It's not all about you!

Those are just three tips for fun and easy networking. There are tons more!

Please share your tips in the comments for fun and easy networking.