The official blog of Susan Landis-Steward, writer of whatever she likes, and co-founder of Puddletown Publishing Group

Posts tagged ‘blogging’

Social Marketing’s Dozen a Day

If you took piano lessons (or any other instrument, I think) back in the 50s and 60s, you might remember a book of finger exercises called The Daily Dozen. If you need to get more followers, and make more sales, you need to do your Social Marketing Daily Dozen.

1.  Find and follow five new people on Twitter every day. Then send out at least one content laden tweet every day. DO NOT SPAM SALES.

2.  Find a blog related to your genre and post a comment. Make sure you include your blog link or book link. Follow the blog if you like it. If you have time, step it up a bit and find three or five blogs a day.

3.  From Facebook, go to the search bar at the top of the FB page (in the blue part) and search for Networked Blogs. Join. This will cause your blog posts to go directly to your Twitter feed and FB page and will help drive traffic to your blog. This makes at least one tweet a day seamless in that your blog posts will go right to Twitter.

4. Blog. Well, unless you’re in some sort of campaign, carnival, blog tour, challenge, or other blog event, you don’t need to blog daily. Just blog regularly. Or do art. Whatever it is that you do.

5. Again on Facebook, join Fellow Writers. Check here daily. There are good contacts to be made, and most days there’s something you can do to get more followers or build more traffic. For example, today there is one thread for folks to follow each others blogs. Some days it’s FB author pages, some days it’s Twitter. Whatever it is, do it. You need tons of contacts to help you make sales.

6. Also on Fellow Writers, you can find people doing reviews, interviews, and other interesting things. Check them out. If you like what you see, ask to be included. If you like doing reviews yourself, join a blog tour. If you really like it, set yourself up to do reviews on a regular basis. Writers love reviewers. At least most of them do. And you get free books.

7. Use Google to find book reviewers who review the kind of thing you write. Ask them to review your books. If you have writing friends, ask them to do reviews for you and offer to do the same for them.

8. If you see a blog event (look up the ones in number 4 above) that sounds like fun, sign up. Several of us are doing the A to Z event. There are new ones starting every day, on all sorts of topics or with various activities. C’mon. It’s fun.

9. Join the Independent Authors Network (IAN).

10. Join Goodreads and get acquainted. There are all sorts of groups. Pick a few and join. Comment. Relate. Review. Get reviewed. Participate.

11. See if you can find anything useful on the Kindle Boards. Some people swear by them. They confuse me. But a friend told me I should try again so I will.

12.  Again on FB, join Novel Publicity. Lots of good pointers, some follower events like the ones in Fellow Writers. Plus, go to Novel Publicity’s website. Emlyn has lots of free information about social marketing and also sells some services. If social marketing is confusing you, she can help.
BONUS: If you belong to SCBWI, MWA, RWA, SinC or other writing organizations, let people know about your books, publisher, cover artist, whatever. Share your expertise. Ask for help. Get SOCIAL.

REMEMBER: It’s about building relationships, not just selling your books. Make new friends. Trust me. It’s fun.

NOTE: I’ve been putting my money where my mouth is and have been selling books regularly on Amazon, roughly 1 to 2 books a day. All total, I’ve sold about 50 books in two weeks. Not Amanda Hocking, but not bad for a beginner. And I write in a niche market that is only about 5 percent of the market. (I know it’s really 10 percent, but I figure at least half of that figure are men who aren’t buying lesbian mysteries.) So it does work.

Lenten Discipline

The liturgical season of Lent is upon us and, although I have defected from the Anglicans and joined the Unitarians, I still find the challenge of a spiritual discipline inviting.  During Lent, it is traditional to give something up for 40 days, until Easter. Note this is forty days and not forty-six. Lent may be a season for fasting but Sundays in the Christian tradition are ALWAYS feast days so the fast can be broken to celebrate once a week. In fact, it should be broken once a week. Man, or woman, cannot wear a hairshirt every day. Sometimes it has to go to the dry cleaners.

As I said, it is traditional to give up something for Lent. As I child I gave up liver, because I wouldn’t eat it anyway. I tried to give up candy but that never worked. Now I have a more sophisticated understanding and this Lent I am going to give up lethargy. Since I have a chronic health condition that frequently leaves me with no energy and a desire to just stay in bed all day, this should be a stretch. Although I’m not so sure the exhaustion of fibromyalgia really falls under the rubric “lethargy.”

Lethargy, to me, is a sort of physical, emotional, and  spiritual laziness. It’s not doing what I could do.  There are days, literally, when I can’t tie my own shoes. But I can still put on a pair of clogs. Or at least my slippers.  There are days when I can’t unload the dishwasher but I can still make sure the dishes that migrate to other rooms in the house find their way back home. And there are days when I just plain don’t want to deal with the hard stuff of life in the spirit or mind.

So this Lent, I am going to make a real effort to do the things I can, even if I don’t feel like it. Note: This does not mean I will do the things I really can’t do. I do have a real medical condition and if I push too hard, I pay dearly. But I can do more than I sometimes do. And when I find myself being lazy, when I should take care of business, I will do the thing I am avoiding.

To that end, I have set these goals.

  • I will not procrastinate on the unpleasant. If I have to make a phone call (I hate the phone) I will make it.
  • I will journal daily, at least one line, as an aid to doing the hard emotional and spiritual work. Don’t worry, I won’t make you read it.
  • I will blog daily about my progress when I make any and about other things when I don’t.
  • I will work on my dang book every day. Even if it’s just finding the paper clips or reading some critiques from fellow writers.

So hold me accountable. Nag me if you must. (And I know some of you feel that you must.) And check back to see how it’s going.

A Challenge

Now I know most of you who read this are either friends or relatives so I know you are, mostly, highly creative, intelligent, and funny. I won’t point fingers at those who are not.

So help me. Send me your best ideas for blog entries. Whatever you want. Make it hard, make it easy, challenge me to learn something new, or discuss something old. If you do, I will write it. (unless I find it offensive). And I will put your name in the tags for everyone to see. Just put your idea in the comments for all to see.

Better yet, start your own blog and I’ll write stuff for YOU.

Here's the thing…

While blogging may seem like a mastabatory exercise, it is actually a social endeavor. Just below this post, there is a little thing that says comments. It’s sort of like that game where you write something, fold the paper down, and pass it on to the next person to write something. I write something, then you are supposed to comment. Better yet, you are supposed to be amusing and START something. Anything. Just write.

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