RT Booklovers Convention 2011: Wooing The Masses With E-Book Marketing

At this morning’s E-Book Marketing Panel “Wooing the Masses" e-book authors from across the genres shared their tips on effective e-marketing. The authors offering advice were Eden Bradley, Mari Carr, Kristen Painter and Jayne Rylon.

During the panel, each author discussed the different things they have done to market themselves and what they found most effective. Mari Carr, who recently co-authored the erotic e-book Northern Exposure with Jane Rylon, said that she felt that she was lucky to find another writer whose voice worked so well with hers. By having a co-author, the writers were able to split both the costs of promotion as well as the workload. Mari shared that they chose to focus their recent marketing efforts on connecting to readers using social media. For example they used Twitter to promote 140 character book quotes and hosted an excerpt party on Facebook.

Eden Bradley agreed about the importance of finding fellow authors to cross promote with. Working with her fellow Smutketeers, R.G. Alexander, Crystal Jordan and Lilli Feisty, this foursome has a blog that that they maintain together. So when they released their Wasteland series from Samhain, it was four authors all working to promote the collection of stories.

Eden also said that not only for her group of friends, but for anyone writing e-books, a strong online presence is a must. “Readers can’t walk into a bookstore and browse the aisles for your e-books.” But she warns that for effective e-book promotion it’s important to not only build an online presence but also maintain it or you will disappear. To do this publishers can help, but also up to the author to brand themselves and make themselves visible online.

Kristen said that for e-book marketing, social media is the best thing she’s found so far, suggesting that those tools are the most useful sources for getting readers' attention online. She finds that the best way to go about self promotion on social networking sites is to engage on a personal level but don’t get too personal. (She gave the example, don’t let the world know that you’re going to the dentist.) If you really want to connect with readers, you have to start a conversation. Constant promotional messages that are just for the purpose of selling your book can be a big turn-off.

Finally, Jayne Rylon said that there’s a lot of technology tools out there to help with engaging people online. It’s important to look around and find what works best for you. She said one of the things she finds the most helpful is being able to track where people are linking from when they come to her site. (So she uses bit.ly as a tracking device) and that way you can tell which sites people are popping over from.

If you are not up on the newest technology what do you do? Find someone who can help you. The panelists say that author associations usually have an “author services” section, your publishers and even Google can help you find the technology that you need.

For more great tips from this panel you can get your own copy of the audio recording at www.ConferenceRecording.com and for more e-book action you can join us for tomorrow’s E-book Expo And Graphic Novel Fair which is open to the public!