The 2015 #AskSwanwick season started on 3 February with a little more action than anticipated. Robin de Jongh, our ebook marketing expert, was unable to attend because of an emergency meeting. But being the pro that he is, he provided a more than adequate replacement. Candace Gillhoolley (@Candace35), marketing manager of Manning Publications, tuned in from Montreal, Quebec, Canada, and made the first chat of the year our first imntercontinental one.
Q: How important would you say marketing is for ebooks? Best to pay someone to do it?
A: How important is marketing an ebook? Very! Why write something and then not talk about it? If you aren't interested in talking about it, why would anyone be interested in reading it?
Q: What made you choose marketing in the first place?
A: I love to talk and I am super social, and so marketing came easily and I decided to go with what I know. I stumbled into Time Warner right out of Columbia University. Publishing felt like home to me.
Q: What are the biggest mistakes writers make when using social media for their marketing?
A: Authors who only talk about themselves hurt themselves more than they think. It is more important to JOIN a conversation. Become an advocate for someone else and see what it takes to create your own evangelists from the inside out.
Q: What does NOT work in ebook marketing?
A: Strict promotions with no content sharing. You need to give to get.
Q: Do you think there is a problem with targeting when marketing online?
A: I try never to see any limits in anything I ever do in life. You have to find your niche and optimize that.
Q: There are so many stars in the universe. How do you make one shine brighter?
A: Shine brighter by focusing on what you do best and let everyone else worry about themselves.
Q: If a writer is on a limited budget and has limited time, what are quick promotional wins? What would you recommend? E.g. for a YA story?
A: Young Adult readers have vibrant online communities to promote your work. You could offer certain Twitter followers or Twitter acts free copies to give away to make more noise. I would also pick an author that you like and see what they have done social marketing wise.
Q: Do I have to be a show man/woman to promote my book or are there ploys that also work for shy people?
A: There is no need for games to promote a book. You can find MeetsUps, UserGroups, Pinterest Boards, G+ Communities, & Vine
Q: What do you think is more important in ebook marketing, words or graphics?
A: Graphics are very important. Again, words/pics importance depends on the topic you are writing about. But a GREAT visual is invaluable.
Q: Do you have any surefire tips for marketing rookies like most of us?
A: Tips for success #1 BE OPEN. #2 Share your work #3 Research. BE OPEN means: Your time is your most valuable asset. Writing takes up a lot of time. Share that investment with others. Research is everything. Use that research to create a new network. Then cultivate that network for your book.
Karin Bachmann (@BookwormKarin) hosted this chat.
Why not join our chat next time? It's a very easy and fun way to have your questions on various writing aspects answered by specialists. Just check out http://www.swanwickwritersschool.org.uk/latest-news to see when the chats are on and be on Twitter when the fun begins. You can fine an easy-to-follow #AskSwanwick guide here.