Friday, 28 February 2014

The Authors Lottery UPDATE

The concept of an Author's Lottery doesn't seem to have grasped the imagination and that's putting the best possible spin on it! (If you missed last week's post and want to know more then simply click on the Authors Lottery Tab above).

I'm going to give it one more try simply because I think it could benefit lots of us. First let me be clear, there is no financial outlay required or demanded of any one at any time. Our commitment would be to download the winning Author's ebook each week. What we do with it is up to us. Should the winning author decide to charge a small fee then he/she runs the risk of less people downloading his/her book. Authors who publish on Amazon Kindle may want to may use of their new Kindle Countdown feature for example.

The underpinning principle is one of support and trust. Personally I am willing to set aside $4 a month to support other authors. What's more I'm happy to forgo my own inclusion in the lottery itself. This blog is dedicated to supporting indie authors in practical ways. I don't know about you but I'm fed up of all the offers to attend events for this or that promotion that drop into my inbox. A lot of time and effort goes into these promotions but there are just too many to respond to everyone. Please Tweet this blog post or let others know about it on your blog.

Everyone who subscribes to the Authors Lottery - and all that means is that your name and number go into each weekly draw- will receive genuinely useful information on how to promote your books via email on a regular basis. Just provide your name and email in the  TWITTER AUTHORS MARKETING COURSE subscription box and you'll receive a five part information course on how to use Twitter to effectively market your books. There will be other courses to follow. Here is PART ONE of the TWITTER AUTHORS MARKETING COURSE to give you an idea of what to expect in the future.
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In this first lesson let's talk a little about how you can start building a large network of friends, potential readers, associates, and customers using the social networking website Twitter.

Many new users of Twitter are constantly asking how they can use the site more effectively for their business and since the site has grown into an Internet mega monster that is globally known and talked about, they are right to ask.

The fact is Twitter is a fantastic tool for authors who want to build a fan base within a particular genre.
Jonathon Gunson is an author who specializes in helping aspiring and established authors amass a readership via Twitter. You can read his guest blog post here.

Internet relationships are very different from actual personal relationships. They are based primarily on like, know, and trust. Many people are reaching out to others through social network websites like Twitter, Facebook and many others.

If you are new to Twitter you may not realize that you can create your personal brand and virtually dominate your genre, simply by building a list of followers. Let's talk about some of the ways you can you achieve this.

Once you've set up your Twitter account you will want to work on your profile. This way you can quickly customize the look and feel of your page to reflect your particular genre. This is something I have attempted to do. You can check my website at http://www.psrowlands.com You will want to pay close attention to your one line bio. Because this is what people will read before they decide whether or not they want to follow you. You will only have 160 characters to describe who you are and what you do, so you have to make it good!

The next thing you will want to do is get ‘followers’. If you have any contacts that are already using Twitter, invite them to follow you. Put link's in your emails, on your websites and blogs asking people to follow you. You could even put your Twitter url on your business card, so that you can gather followers offline as well. -  Yes, authors should have business cards.

Don't be shy tell everyone you meet about your Twitter page. Make it  sound exciting and let them know that you will be sharing important updates about your books, extracts and information with them if they follow you. You may be surprised to find out that almost everyone will click the follow button just to see what you're up too!

Another thing that I feel that is important especially for authors using Twitter is to seek out and follow the ‘big names’ in your particular genre who are on Twitter. J.K. Rowling immediately springs to mind.
This will benefit you in more than one way. It will give you a bird’s eye view of what they’re doing on Twitter, so you can learn how to improve your own results and it will also put you in front of all the people they are in contact with.

Curiosity, you can't fight it, so you may as well take advantage of it. People are curious by nature! They like to see who is following who, so often they will click on the links and check out the followers of people they know and follow them as well and by following the genre leaders, so to speak you may naturally end up will new followers as well. Just try and keep your readership in mind when you choose ‘best selling authors’ to follow.

Now let's talk about meeting even more people and making hundreds of new friends by using 'retweet’s’.
With this method, you take the original twitter message someone else has posted, and rebroadcast that same message to your followers. When broadcasting the message, you should definitely give credit to the original poster.  I know at first it may sound like this will only be good for the original tweeter, but retweeting can actually benefit you just as much if not more because:

1.  It provides more value to your followers.
When you provide value to your followers, you make them happy!
You are also more likely to attract followers. Providing quality content is always a great way to build your list of potential readers no matter what platform you use.

2. It will benefit your brand especially if you are writing a series within a specific genre.
If you point a reader to a source of good information that is truly relevant and beneficial to them, the amount of trust that they have in you will increase.

3. It will help you build relationships with the original posters.

Retweeting someone else’s content is an act of kindness, and for the most part bloggers like to return the favour. You shouldn't expect someone to retweet your content just because you retweet theirs.
Just keep in mind that your chance of being on the other end of a retweet increases as you retweet.
Retweeting is all about providing value to your followers so if you want others to retweet your post then you want to make sure that you are providing them with quality content worth tweeting about.
The bottom line is retweeting is a great way to add quality and value to your Twitter page. If done right, retweeting can help you educate your followers, build your personal brand, increase future traffic, and connect you to other great people in your genre or niche.

Just be careful if you use it incorrectly, retweeting can actually hurt your personal brand and future traffic. You want to treat your followers like gold. Don't ever send them to inappropriate websites or spam them with one sales pitch after another. I mistake I made once when enthusiastically over promoting my book!
Remember you want them to like what you have to say, so they will follow your lead. Then when you do recommend something to them you will get the results you are looking for every time!
That's it for today's lesson. Now go to Twitter and start building your followers by providing them with great content that they will love you for!


We have a lot to go over in the next few days if you want to learn more about how to use Twitter as an author make sure you look for your next lesson tomorrow. I will be talking about some tools that you can use to make your Twitter page more interactive and successful.

I hope this has whetted you appetite! As I see it if we are not prepared to help each other in as many ways as possible we make life that much harder for ourselves.

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