Tag Archives: Social Media

Why Authors Should Hire a Professional Copywriter

Do you need copy written for your website or blog that will market your books or your product? Thinking about doing it yourself? You may want to think again. While most everyone knows how to write, that is, put ideas down on paper. Most people don’t know how to sell through writing. And that’s what copywriting is all about: effectively selling a product or service through the power of words.

Quality.

A writer writes. Period. That’s all they do. They know how to write persuasive copy that packs a punch, gets attention “and sells more.

Positioning.

Yes, it’s true, some people have a knack for writing. But developing copy for marketing materials (things like brochures, websites, and campaigns) goes beyond good grammar and spelling. It’s about knowing how to properly position your book so that it stands out and motivates your target audience to take action. A professional copywriter knows how to do that.

Perspective.

You’re in the middle of preparing for a new book launch, scheduling a meeting with your editor, hiring a new assistant and a myriad of other tasks. Sometimes you get so busy that you lose perspective about your business as an author and about what makes your book unique in the eyes of your customers and prospects. In essence, you can’t see the forest for the trees. But a professional copywriter can bring fresh eyes and fresh ideas to the table. They are not caught up in the day-to-day inner workings of your business as an author and can therefore, many times, do a better job of communicating big picture concepts about your books.

Clarity.

Even if you are a good writer, you may not understand how to write for your target audience. A professional copywriter can take a complex concept one that you may easily understand, but your customers may not and turn it into easy-to-read copy.

Brevity

Let’s face it. In today’s too-much-information age, everyone is deluged with more then they can possibly read. But a professional copywriter knows how to get ideas across using words economically. They can take all the information you provide and translate it into succinct and relevant points. With the help of a professional writer, your copy will take on a new energy, crispness, and focus.

Convenience.

Your time is valuable and effective writing is a time-consuming task, constricting your already tight schedule. By hiring a professional copywriter, you’ll be able to focus on other tasks, while the copywriter does what he or she does best, writes.

Supporting the design.

A well-designed website, brochure, or direct mail campaign requires strong copywriting. If you have eye-catching graphics, you’ll invite your audience to begin reading. Compelling content will keep them reading. A professional copywriter can ensure the success of your design efforts by holding the attention of your audience.

The Bottom Line.

In today’s economy, selling books is as cutthroat as ever. You need copy that will get your books noticed. You need every tool in the box to stand out and persuade your target audience to act. A professional copywriter may just provide the edge you need.

ACW copy

Twitter Etiquette

by M.R. Goodhew

There are all kinds of rules to know about how to operate on twitter. Get some of these wrong and you’ll be unfollowed and even blocked by some users. The intensity of the set of standards that has developed on twitter is so ingrained into its users, that I choose to call this subject Twitter Etiquette.

The List

It’s best not tag a person in your post unless you know for sure it is okay with them. Using a followers handle in a tweet without permission will get you unfollowed and possibly even blocked.

You should steer-cleer of posting 1o or more tweets in a row, you’d be monopolizing the feed and this is considered spammy. You want to time your tweets at intervals so it’s not just your tweets that everyone is seeing.

You shouldn’t use characters in your tweets that look unfamiliar to a regular keyboard standard, people might think you are unprofessional and may fail to trust your brand. Plus, they may have a hard time interpreting your tweet.

Try not to abbreviate everything in your tweet, it could get irritating to try and read. A few abbreviations such as RT for retweet, TY for thank you, are simple abbreviations that nearly everyone understands. The more you abbreviate, the more you begin to appear less human, and you won’t gain popularity as quickly or have people wanting to engage with you.

tag your tweets copy

Use hashtags relevant to your brand with every post you make. Over three hashtags is too many. Keep it to a maximum of three hashtags and be sure you’re not spamming a hashtag. When your content doesn’t provide any valuable information to a person searching that hashtag, you know you are spamming.

Do share other peoples content. It is customary to share a followers content if they have retweeted you, followed you, or mentioned you. At the same time, be sure that the tweet of theirs that you’re sharing is their pinned tweet. If they don’t have a pinned tweet, a good place to check for their content is in their photos. Most tweeters will attach their brand marketing to alluring photos that end up in their photo feed. Do your best not to retweet a retweet, it’s just rude. The only time that this would be okay is if you just can’t locate something that they have shared that is their own.

Be sure to share your own content after sharing others so that when people come to your profile it’s your tweets they see and share. Pin your best and most important tweet to the top of your page.

Twitter Jail copy

Know that when you exceed your followers in follows by a certain percentage, twitter will not let you follow any more users until both sides balance out.

Thank people for following you with a tweet. It’s not just an opportunity to thank them, but your chance to get your brand out there in the feed. This is also a case where it is okay to use their twitter handle to mention them.  Include a quick call to action, and be sure to add a relevant photo that they will want to share. Most people retweet thank you’s anyway just as a common courtesy.

Automation copy

You can also automate a direct message (DM) to send out to your new followers that tells them little about you and invites them to your website to discover more. Inviting people to your platform is important for the marketing aspect of your brand. It brings them one step closer to becoming a loyal follower and purchasing your product or inquiring about your services. Be sure your automated DM doesn’t sound generic, people tend to skip over generic DM’s. They want to feel as if they are communicating with a real person and making a connection, not a bot.

Be a friendly connection and retweet your new followers pinned tweet, why not, you’re there anyway right? This will get their attention and more than likely bring them back to your profile where they will take a closer look at all you have to offer. Follow back and add them to a public or private list once you have scanned their feed and know what they’re all about. This will aid you in monitoring your network later.

Thank people for re-tweeting you with a tweet and use their handle to mention them, this shows other tweeters who is re-tweeting, and hence, who to follow. It is a nice gesture. You can again include a call to action that pitches your brand and takes them to a point of sale or to your website. Always include a relevant picture if you can because it calls attention to your tweet.

Be sure to also retweet your retweeters, it’s only fair and proper. And again, try your best not to tweet their retweets. It might be considered lazy and rude not to attempt to retweet their original content.

Twitter Handles copy

Do respond to your mentions by thanking your follower or fellow tweeter. It’s more than likely that the mention is not automated so they took some time and effort to connect with you. Communicate with people who mention you and then re-tweet or mention them when you share their content in return.

If you’re in business (which I assume you are if you’re reading this) then you want to maintain a certain air of professionalism which means that some subject matter is taboo. Gossip, political viewpoints, anything that might be considered sexist or racist, and religion are typical subjects to steer clear of if you don’t want to offend portions of your network.

Send out a Friday tweet to your favorite followers thanking them.  This is tagged #FF. Follow Friday is essentially a Twitter holiday with the aim of getting people to follow one another.

Don’t just pay attention to the people that are paying attention to you. Take the time to reach out to your network and make connections. This is a great opportunity to monitor your lists.

Do tweet random tweets, be a human, say real things. This will make your followers more inclined to connect with you and respond well to your brand. Twitter isn’t just about marketing and people want to know that you’re a living, breathing person.

I recommend that you do not validate your followers as it will drive them away, and respond to them personally for following you rather than having a service do it.

Try to sell your entire brand on twitter through your personality and your tweets.

This is one way to help you become a success in creating a network of targeted followers that interact with your content, rarely unfollow, purchase your product, and spread the word about your brand.

Do you have a general rule that I didn’t think of? What are your top twitter rules?


Available in June 2016

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As an author you are in the business of selling books. If you’re not connected to twitter, you should be. Leveraging your network on twitter is essential to marketing your books. In this book you will discover:

  • the complete guide to the ins and outs of twitter
  • Who to follow and how to find them
  • Secrets to building influence on Twitter
  • the secrets to engaging your followers and making lasting connections
  • The formula behind successful marketing of your brand or author platform
  • Content strategies, time savers, and useful tips

Start your journey toward social media influence and business success!


 

The Art of a Short Story

HOW AND WHY I WROTE FOR POSTERITY

Guest Post by author John Lynn

         If I hadn’t accepted the invitation from a critique group, I would have never written a short story.  While I was forewarned in a novel-writing course that most of us neophytes were not novelists, I pressed on, boring the poor souls around me with long literary pieces destined for the trash bin.  This was not to say that I would never write a novel; rather, now was not the time.  Then came the question, how does one tell a story in two thousand words?  The answer: Let the subconscious do the walking, the pen do the talking.  I sat down to write Mirage, not knowing I was about to do so.  My mind wandered as my pen walked across the page.  From deep in my consciousness a story, good enough to win something, appeared.  I was in shock.

     The genesis of For Posterity came from a much different place, the heart.  Over the course of two years, I had written many short stories, winning congratulations on many of them.  One of the stories was titled: Generations.  I thought of the title; who might read this story, and the other short tales, after I had passed?  Rather than submitting the stories to magazines, I decided to enclose the ensemble of stories between a cover, For Posterity.  

     I had utilized the virtual world (Dreamstime) for a book cover before, but these stories were too close to my soul.  Meeting the right artist who had already painted my cover was a pure stroke of luck – and good networking.  M. Allsion produced the book cover and graphite pencil sketches to precede each tale.  The final pencil sketch closes the book and decorates the back cover as well.

     With the assistance of a tech-minded reader, I posted For Posterity.   I had promoted two longer works online and found little interest after the first couple of months.  Here’s the kicker: I’m about to post another short novel: El Camino Real.  But, I’m getting ahead of myself.  With M. Allison’s art and my wisdom scribbled between the covers, I wanted For Posterity in my hands to tout on the road.  I utilized a printing service to produce fifty copies.  Between giveaways and surprising sales they were gone almost immediately.  Thus, back to the printer for a larger volume of books.  Now, I walk the beautiful trails of Sedona and Carmel with my backpack filled; what better way to nature walk across gorgeous countryside?  My advice to other Indie writers, no matter how many sales one envisions online, have an ample supply of copies in hand.  You are by far the best and often the only salesperson capable of selling your product.

Connect with John on Facebook 

email: jbaelynn@att.net


“For Posterity” is available on Amazon

Cover Artist: M. Allison

MAllisonartist.com
(713)-240-4221

allison@mallisonartist.com
www.mallisonfineart.blogspot.com

 

 

 

 

 

Cover Design & Illustration Process

Two years ago I started illustrating Tykocin for best-selling author Ben Brown. I started out creating characters for the book first and soon had my first concept ready. My first attempt at the main character was not what I had hoped for and I had never drawn a cyborg before and remember being nervous about creating him. I made him too young on the first try and had to go back to the drawing board, litterally…

My original concept…Cover - 05

The original characters…

Eli copy Elizabet 3 copy

Cyborg copy

Nailed the background 🙂 …

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Had a few trial and errors…

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My second pass was pretty good…

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and I came up with this …

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Unfortunately this wasn’t quite the look Ben was going for so I tried a third approach and came up with something a little different that really captured the protagonist…

Thanks to her drug and alcohol dependency, Elisabet Blumenberg’s FBI career has more or less sunk as far as it can; in the space of five years, she’s gone from heading up her own team to the data pool. She’s at rock bottom. Then her neighbor, an aging holocaust survivor, asks for help finding her missing husband. As a favor to the old woman, Elisabet agrees to help…and unearths more than she ever thought possible—a Nazi plot to regain world domination. Her investigation uncovers horrendous experiments and a whole new generation of Nazi monsters…in 21st Century America!

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Available on Amazon

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Ben Brown

About Ben Brown 

Follow Ben on Twitter

Born in Reading, England, he struggled through school academically. Diagnosed with dyslexia meant being removed from class to attend ‘remedial” lessons. As a child, Ben did not enjoy reading and writing, and left school early to work with his father as a builder. It wasn’t until his mid-twenties that Ben persisted in teaching himself to read — and finally read his first novel.

Ben emigrated to Perth, Western Australia in 1990, where he now lives with his wife Michelle and two adult children, Chelsea and Zac. To pass the hours working as a bricklayer, he would think about writing a novel. However, it took many years for him to pluck up the courage to turn his dreams into words. His dyslexia, and informal knowledge of the English language and grammar, made his first book a real challenge. Luckily, he had plenty of people around him to help him on his journey.

His love of scientific facts, futuristic possibilities, and fast-paced action infects his plots and writing style. He thoroughly enjoys pushing himself creatively, which means venturing into many types of storytelling. As a consequence, his catalog is a mixture of sci-fi, speculative and horror fiction. Ben now has a growing number of novels to his name, and he fully intends to expand on that number.


Book Cover Designer and Marketing Design

A Recent Author Full Brand Image Project & Book Launch

I had the awesome opportunity to do a full brand image project for an amazing new author Kathrin Hutson. I am reading Kat’s book “Daughter of the Drackan” now and having a hard time putting it down. It has just launched, so you can get your copy on Amazon now.

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Book One of Gyenona’s Children:  Born of humans but raised by beasts who despise the legacy of man, Keelin is the only one who can redeem, or destroy, the future of both races. Keelin is the only human fledgling, weaned by the drackans of the High Hills and given their instincts, ferocious strength, and fierce hatred for humankind. But even the drackans closest to her cannot explain why she has violent blackouts from which she wakens covered in blood. A desperate, reckless search for the source of this secret brings her face to face with the human world and memories from a locked-away past, long forgotten. Keelin becomes a terrifying legend among human assassins while she hunts for answers, and the human realm’s High King is murdered. While a sickly steward hides within crumbling walls, commanding her every move with a magic he should not possess, Keelin’s journey to track him down threatens her loyalty to the drackans who raised her. The rogue who crosses her path hides familiar secrets, echoing her own terrifying blood-lust and forcing her to consider that there may be something human about her after all.

Mother of the Drackan, Book Two of Gyenona’s Children, is set for release Spring 2016.

Get Your Copy Now On

Amazon

Kat is also a professional editor that I highly recommend


Below is the entire package I designed if you want to check it out 🙂

Book Cover Design

(Illustration done by Chandler Steele)


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DOD Final Paperback 001  Kindle

Amazon Ads

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Book Marketing Teasers

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Book Posters

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Google+ Banner

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Twitter Banner

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