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Taerak's Void
by M. R. Mathias

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Kindle Edition published 2017-07-09
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Taerak's Void
(Book One of Fantastica)
A new series by multiple award winning author, M. R. Mathias

After finding a strange medallion and some maps with markings that no one in his village can understand, Braxton Bray decides to take it all to the Hall of Scholars in the kingdom's capital. But greed is everywhere. Braxton and a tough young female caravan guard named Nixy are forced to run for their lives, for someone else wants what Braxton found and is willing to go to great lengths to take it from him.

With a hefty, kingdom wide, bounty on their heads, not even the great wizards of the Sorcerious can help them. Left with nothing but each other, Braxton and Nixy have no choice but to get on a ship and go on an adventure that will take them places they would have otherwise never imagined. Elves, dwarves, giant gothicans, and trolls, treacherous forests on distant shores, love, death, terror, and magic all await...

Author Topic: A Free quick & dirty marketing plan  (Read 4459 times)  

Offline Usedtoposthere

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A Free quick & dirty marketing plan
« on: August 26, 2014, 03:53:22 PM »
I just posted this in a thread about hiring somebody to do your marketing, and how to come up with a "marketing plan."
And since I'm procrastinating, I took 10 minutes and wrote it up. This used to be my job, so this is the easy part for me. I thought I'd share it. And then get back to work!

(I know some folks have reported bad experiences with posting here, and for that, I'm truly sorry. I may have had some blowback, but I don't think it's much, and I've had lots of positive experiences. So unless something awful happens, or "Rosalie Johns" starts writing "Adventure in New Zealand" rugby romances*, I'm going to keep posting.)

*(Hint: You should probably watch a lot of rugby first. And preferably live in New Zealand for a couple years. Also drink some beer.)

Here we go.

The Rosalind James Quick and Dirty Marketing Plan

1. BRAND YOURSELF. (This is also #2 and #3). Brand your covers--ALL your covers, at least in that genre. You should be able to tell at a glance that all the books in your sig were written by you and only you, and what kind of books they are. Not just what genre--what's the tone? How will the reader feel after reading a book by you? Not sure what I mean? Look at the bestseller list in your genre. Then look at those authors' Amazon pages. Betcha anything their covers are branded. Betcha you can tell what the book will be like. Your website, your Facebook page--everything should have the same "look." (You can look at mine for a quick example of what I mean. You may have to get somebody to do the web/FB thing--I did. But that's not pricey.)

2. The most important marketing happens before you publish the book. Cover, title, subtitle, blurb, formatting, editing, story. Get those right, and everything else just got a whole lot easier. Skimp on them, and you're pushing that rock uphill all the way.

3. If you want to submit to bloggers--consider a blog tour, if you write genre fiction. You'll pay maybe $120. They find the bloggers. They run the tour. This will also get you credible reviews from people who'll write more detailed comments about WHAT they liked and didn't. The bloggers who liked your book? Start a list of their names, websites, email addresses if given, and next time, you can contact them separately, remind them they liked your book, and ask if they want an ARC.

4. Mailing list. I just started mine a couple months ago (I know). Didn't hurt me too much not to have one, but everyone says it's a great thing, so do that too. It's easy. Put a link on your website, FB page, in the backs of your books.

5. Back of your book--link to mailing list. List of your other books. The first chapter or two of your next book with a link to it right then and there.

6. Excerpt (short!) of your book on "From the Author" on your product page. ("Inside the Front Cover.") So people don't have to click to see that your writing doesn't suck. Sometimes this'll show, sometimes it won't. Can't hurt.

7. Make sure you've made your Author Page on Amazon (US, UK, DE, FR).

8. Social media: do something. I don't do much. I mostly interact on Facebook because that is where my readers are. (Romance; not the super-young crowd.) Find out where folks in your genre are and concentrate your efforts on that. Spend 15 minutes a day. Only about 1/4 of the posts, if that, should be about your book. Related things--related to your genre, or about you. Pictures of my dog and flowers always work well. Also hot rugby players. :)

9. Website (branded website, remember): Fun stuff, again related to your book. I have fun New Zealand things, rugby things, Maori things, stuff about my books (news items), an interactive map of New Zealand, things about pioneer life and San Francisco for my other series--think "added-value." Music videos of the "theme songs" for each book. What might somebody who really liked your book find fun to see/watch/listen to? Put that there; give them a fun place to come hang out for a little while. (Plus, of course, upcoming releases and all that.)

10. Price promos of some kind. Forget other kinds of advertising--they don't work. My best thing has been Select, and use of a promo every 6 weeks-2 months (Free and/or Countdown). You can search for "Rolling Countdown" in the search bar and see a big thread about my Rolling Countdown strategy.

11. Reader mail. Answer it. Every single bit. Via Facebook message, on your website, emails--whatever. Answer it right away.

12. Later on--ARCs. People who sign up to review your book ahead of time and post reviews on release day. Make sure you alert them the book is live, time to post! Have them tell you they posted & send you a link, check them off the list, and thank them. If they don't post, their spot just opened up for somebody else. :)

That's it! That's a reasonable start. That's my Initial Marketing Plan, such as it was. It doesn't take much to execute, and it doesn't take much at all to keep up. I'm one of those who think that your time is best spent writing the new book.

Best of luck!


Offline EmmaS

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Re: A Free quick & dirty marketing plan
« Reply #1 on: August 26, 2014, 04:07:05 PM »
Rosalind... I love you. I just do. :D

This is SO HELPFUL. I've heard bits and pieces of this advice in lots of different places, but never all gathered together like this in a readable format. Thank you!

Offline Usedtoposthere

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Re: A Free quick & dirty marketing plan
« Reply #2 on: August 26, 2014, 04:16:12 PM »
Thanks, Ember. I hope it is helpful. It's pretty elementary, but sometimes when you're starting, you just need ... well, a starting point.

Online Rinelle Grey

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Re: A Free quick & dirty marketing plan
« Reply #3 on: August 26, 2014, 04:19:05 PM »
Awesome advice, Rosalind. And every bit is doable too!

Feel good romance with a touch of magic.
Rinelle grey | Website | Facebook | Twitter

Offline acapellabookcoverdesign

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Re: A Free quick & dirty marketing plan
« Reply #4 on: August 26, 2014, 04:20:34 PM »
This is great! Thanks so much for sharing! :D

-Jennifer

Online SevenDays

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Re: A Free quick & dirty marketing plan
« Reply #5 on: August 26, 2014, 04:20:46 PM »
And...this is why I like it here so much! Thanks, Rosalind! Brilliant advice, as always.

Alex A. King | Website

Offline geekgrrl

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Re: A Free quick & dirty marketing plan
« Reply #6 on: August 26, 2014, 04:28:19 PM »
Yay! Thanks Rosalind! :)

Offline SarahWritesSometimes

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Re: A Free quick & dirty marketing plan
« Reply #7 on: August 26, 2014, 05:00:06 PM »
Oops I just thanked you in the other thread, so I don't know if you will see it.  I'll just say again I really appreciate you taking the time to share with us, especially since this type of sharing has apparently been seen as the cause of some friction on the board lately.

You're awesome!  Thanks  :)
~ Sarah

Offline Bryn

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Re: A Free quick & dirty marketing plan
« Reply #8 on: August 26, 2014, 05:01:12 PM »
Thanks, Ember. I hope it is helpful. It's pretty elementary, but sometimes when you're starting, you just need ... well, a starting point.

That's a great web site you have. I love the flavour of New Zealand culture you've carefully created. It adds value for readers - is engaging. far better than the standard "This is me, here's my work." I can relate to it. My first novel's set there: it was never part of the original plan, but things went puckeroo.

People who treat their readers as well as you do, deserve success.
Bryn Rhidian | Facebook

Offline Claire Frank

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Re: A Free quick & dirty marketing plan
« Reply #9 on: August 26, 2014, 05:12:39 PM »
So much awesome. Thank you!!!

Claire Frank | Website | Twitter | Facebook | Newsletter

Offline LJ

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Re: A Free quick & dirty marketing plan
« Reply #10 on: August 26, 2014, 05:18:18 PM »
Thank you, Rosalind! This is perfect! Very kind and generous of you to share.  :-*

Offline SunshineOnMe

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Re: A Free quick & dirty marketing plan
« Reply #11 on: August 26, 2014, 05:19:04 PM »
Thanks Rosalind! Are you saying to post your sample on the "about the author section? :)

Offline Usedtoposthere

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Re: A Free quick & dirty marketing plan
« Reply #12 on: August 26, 2014, 05:19:09 PM »
That's a great web site you have. I love the flavour of New Zealand culture you've carefully created. It adds value for readers - is engaging. far better than the standard "This is me, here's my work." I can relate to it. My first novel's set there: it was never part of the original plan, but things went puckeroo.

People who treat their readers as well as you do, deserve success.
"Puckeroo" reminds me that I need to put my Kiwi Glossary (in the back of my books) onto the site. Thanks! And thanks. :)

Offline Usedtoposthere

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Re: A Free quick & dirty marketing plan
« Reply #13 on: August 26, 2014, 05:21:01 PM »
Thanks Rosalind! Are you saying to post your sample on the "about the author section? :)
I put it in "From the inside flap," I think it's called. I use "From the Author" to say something quick about how I came to write the book, since readers seem to like hearing that.

Offline SunshineOnMe

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Re: A Free quick & dirty marketing plan
« Reply #14 on: August 26, 2014, 05:25:16 PM »
I put it in "From the inside flap," I think it's called. I use "From the Author" to say something quick about how I came to write the book, since readers seem to like hearing that.
Off to search for it- thank you so much!!

Offline Ros_Jackson

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Re: A Free quick & dirty marketing plan
« Reply #15 on: August 26, 2014, 05:31:20 PM »
(I know some folks have reported bad experiences with posting here, and for that, I'm truly sorry. I may have had some blowback, but I don't think it's much, and I've had lots of positive experiences. So unless something awful happens, or "Rosalie Johns" starts writing "Adventure in New Zealand" rugby romances*, I'm going to keep posting.)

*(Hint: You should probably watch a lot of rugby first. And preferably live in New Zealand for a couple years. Also drink some beer.)

My given name is Rosalind Jackson, only 5 letters different from yours. I share it with about 50 people in the UK, and I don't know how many others worldwide. With the explosion of self-publishing, the chances are high that some of them will publish. So I don't think we need to assume people are necessarily riding coat-tails, when sheer chance and ignorance of the full breadth of a genre will be enough.

All of this makes your first point about branding all the more important. Thanks for sharing.


1. BRAND YOURSELF. (This is also #2 and #3). Brand your covers--ALL your covers, at least in that genre. You should be able to tell at a glance that all the books in your sig were written by you and only you, and what kind of books they are. Not just what genre--what's the tone? How will the reader feel after reading a book by you? Not sure what I mean? Look at the bestseller list in your genre. Then look at those authors' Amazon pages. Betcha anything their covers are branded. Betcha you can tell what the book will be like. Your website, your Facebook page--everything should have the same "look." (You can look at mine for a quick example of what I mean. You may have to get somebody to do the web/FB thing--I did. But that's not pricey.)


Ros Jackson | author website | blog | twitter | goodreads

Offline Usedtoposthere

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Re: A Free quick & dirty marketing plan
« Reply #16 on: August 26, 2014, 05:48:01 PM »
Rosalind James is my penname. Lots of people could have a name that was close, absolutely. The NZ rugby romance, though, would be a bit coincidental. :)

Offline Tricia O'

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Re: A Free quick & dirty marketing plan
« Reply #17 on: August 26, 2014, 07:43:24 PM »
Thanks, Rosalind for all of your support and input.

I'd like to add that reaching out to bloggers and offering to write an article on a particular topic is also very helpful. Another tactic that I found to be successful was to search Facebook for likeminded groups and offer the organizer of the page either a free copy of the book to read and talk about, or to host a giveaway on the page. So, for example, you could look on Facebook for New Zealand travel pages, Women who like to travel, Women who love sports - that kind of thing. Facebook pages are always looking for ways to engage their followers

tricia o'malley

Offline Lucian

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Re: A Free quick & dirty marketing plan
« Reply #18 on: August 26, 2014, 09:48:05 PM »
This is a great post. Thank you.

And also thank you for all of your other great posts as well.

Your generosity is appreciated.
I believe, sometimes, very powerful people do bad things in secret. I also believe good people try to stop them. My novels are about these battles.
Lucian | twitter

Offline Usedtoposthere

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Re: A Free quick & dirty marketing plan
« Reply #19 on: August 27, 2014, 07:51:24 AM »
Thanks, Rosalind for all of your support and input.

I'd like to add that reaching out to bloggers and offering to write an article on a particular topic is also very helpful. Another tactic that I found to be successful was to search Facebook for likeminded groups and offer the organizer of the page either a free copy of the book to read and talk about, or to host a giveaway on the page. So, for example, you could look on Facebook for New Zealand travel pages, Women who like to travel, Women who love sports - that kind of thing. Facebook pages are always looking for ways to engage their followers
I'm sure those things would work too, and are great if you can do them. I just did things that were quick and easy and didn't require lots of research. I know that there's a lot more effort you can put into marketing. But I think the 80/20 rule applies--20% of things will bring you 80% of the value. For me it is more like 90/10 for whatever reason. Mostly I just write the next book and do the occasional promo and post on Facebook, and for me, that works best. I think it's important to know that you can start with a simple plan and then add on more things as you have time and ideas. Ebooks are forever. We get into this speed mode where we think we have to hit big now. But building is good too.

Offline Mark Dawson

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Re: A Free quick & dirty marketing plan
« Reply #20 on: August 27, 2014, 07:54:51 AM »
Brilliant, Ros. Just saw this thread, and I agree with it 100%.

Offline Alan Petersen

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Re: A Free quick & dirty marketing plan
« Reply #21 on: August 27, 2014, 09:48:58 AM »

*(Hint: You should probably watch a lot of rugby first. And preferably live in New Zealand for a couple years. Also drink some beer.)


Ah, man, I only have one of the three down pat, mmm, beer.

Bookmarked and printed this! Thank you for sharing these strategies and laying it out in such a nifty checklist-like way.

Offline Ethan Jones

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Re: A Free quick & dirty marketing plan
« Reply #22 on: August 27, 2014, 09:57:08 AM »
Excellent advice, Rosalind. I appreciate you sharing your wisdom with us.
Thanks,
Ethan

Offline Tricia O'

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Re: A Free quick & dirty marketing plan
« Reply #23 on: August 27, 2014, 01:38:31 PM »
But I think the 80/20 rule applies--20% of things will bring you 80% of the value. For me it is more like 90/10 for whatever reason. Mostly I just write the next book and do the occasional promo and post on Facebook, and for me, that works best. I think it's important to know that you can start with a simple plan and then add on more things as you have time and ideas. Ebooks are forever. We get into this speed mode where we think we have to hit big now. But building is good too.

^ It also is a nice way to manage your success without getting overwhelmed by having too many irons in the fire.

tricia o'malley

Offline DGS

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Re: A Free quick & dirty marketing plan
« Reply #24 on: August 27, 2014, 02:23:29 PM »
Great one RJ. First one is huge.

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