is written to help authors, publishers, and organizations
spread their message like wildfire.
This week’s focus:
As winter approaches, snow begins to fall – which means fun activities, such as building a snowman or throwing snowballs at an unsuspecting spouse, kid, or neighbor. To build a snowman, you start by packing together a small ball of snow. Then, you roll the ball on the ground. As you maintain pressure while rolling, the ball will pick up snow as it rotates and builds momentum. The more you roll, the bigger it gets. If you continue rolling long enough, you will windup with a giant snowball.
The way you build a snowman is the same way you build an author platform. Usually, you start with a small group of readers. But, as you provide value through your marketing activities, your initial ball will start to attract more readers through word-of-mouth. If you stay consistent and “keep rolling,” your ball of followers will build momentum and start to rapidly grow. Over time, you can windup with a giant platform.
Too many authors forget the “snowball” principle of marketing and wait too late to start promoting their new book. They ignore the need to begin marketing until 6 – 8 weeks before their books’ launch date. By then, they feel overwhelmed with stress. Worse, there’s not enough time to build the momentum necessary to rapidly expand their platform. It’s like trying to build a huge snowball by only rolling it a few feet. You’re going to be disappointed with the lack of growth.
Building a large platform takes time and effort. I tell the authors that I coach to start actively marketing a new book at least 6 months in advance. That length of time allows the momentum process to start early enough to get results. The sooner you get your snowball rolling, the more time you have to make it grow. Authors can market a book early by blogging on the topic, speaking on the subject, sending newsletters with updates, providing deep discounts for pre-orders, “leaking” sample chapters, etc. There’s nothing wrong with getting people excited about a new book – even if they’ll have to wait a few months. In fact, the sense of anticipation alone can be a key factor in building buzz among readers.
Don’t let your book launch feel like you’re getting run over by a snowball. Instead, use the snowball principle to your advantage. Start rolling early, stay consistent, and watch your platform grow.
— By the way, I thought I’d practice what I preach and let you know that I have a new book coming out in May, 2012 with Writer’s Digest publishing house called Sell Your Book Like Wildfire. Here’s a sneak peek at the front cover. This book will be the definitive guide on book marketing and platform growth for authors. I hope you’ll purchase a copy and tell your author network about it. As a thanks to my email subscribers, I’ll be offering special discounts for those who pre-order early. Stay tuned for details.
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© Rob Eagar 2011.
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