Sunday, November 6, 2016

Sunday Musings: Who is responsible for marketing

Welcome to your Sunday Musings

Still playing catch up, but I know you're with us.

Our first question for November: Who is responsible for marketing?

MJ LABEFF, New Mainstream author

I am ultimately responsible for marketing my books and engaging readers. Social media has changed the way authors interact with people from around the world. It's fun to share excerpts and reviews about my books, but I post, tweet and Instagram more about my volunteer work with the American Cancer Society, what I'm reading, cooking disasters (I hate to cook), football (I'm a big Cleveland Browns fan), dogs (I have three big dogs), and other fun stuff. Well, I think it’s fun and hopefully people following me on social media think so too! As the author, I'm the best person to talk about my books, and update my website and social media when I have exciting announcements about me books. Having a publisher is really exciting and I can't wait for my first book release with Muse- "Last Summer's Evil" book 1 in the Last Cold Case series is coming soon!

Well, regardless of how it should or could be, the bottom line is IF you are not a big name author with an agent and a big publisher, and IF your writings are not filling your publisher's coffers, you will be responsible for marketing your eBook/Book. (I take marketing to mean publicizing your writing online, setting up book signings, finding opportunities to speak to groups, with SWAG to hand out at live events, etc.) This is especially true if you are published through an indie/small press. They do not have the personnel nor the budget to market some 200-300 authors. Just simple economics is all.

I am responsible for marketing 'Daffodil and the Thin Place' and my new book 'The Great War - 100 hundred stories in 100 words honouring those who lived and died 100 years ago'. It isn't something I find very easy as I don't like to pester people and I think my marketing attempts are often so subtle no one notices! I take photographs that I use on social media to promote my books which is useful as I don't have any copyright issues but my methods are a bit scattergun! If I ever make a lot of money writing, I will find someone to market my books for me, as I think they will make a better job of it than me.

Myself. Me. Moi. Obviously the publisher sets up the initial bargain deals/promos, but after that the author should really do all they can to market their book. I don't mean run up to people on the street, knock them down, and sit on their chest until they acquiesce to buy your novel, but it should be something on your mind. I'm currently a college student, so my schedule is pretty darn full. Still, I promote my book where and when I can: with quotes/mood boards on Tumblr, through my blog, etc. It can even be little things. Something I really need to work on is writing to other blogs for reviews; I just received one I wrote to months ago, and it was a really great critique. My book isn't in print, so I can't hope for someone to walk by it at their local bookstore. It's only online in ebook form, so it's a lot more hidden. Therefore, I kind of have to lead potential readers by the hand.

Leaving aside the contract specifies both parties should promote each book, I think both the publisher and author are responsible for it, since it's a team effort.

Primarily my publisher, though I also contact those on my list of readers plus a number of friends and relations when a new work comes out and I have the various sales links to send them.  I also talk about upcoming releases, give out business cards, and encourage people to visit my website.  I am not on social media, and financial considerations prevent me from doing things like buying ads.  When my works were also being released in hard copy, I used to do readings and signings in local bookstores.

Dear reader, thank you again for joining us and we’d love to hear from you. Keep smiling and have a fun week. Never stop believing. See you next Sunday…nothing better than being cozy in bed with some Musings.

If you have a question or comment you’d like us to muse upon, do not hesitate to contact me Christine Steeves-Speakman  at

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