9 Critical Steps to Successful Self-Publishing: Critical Step 9
Critical Step 9: Connect with Your Readers
I blog and tweet from two of my websites. How do you know what to blog or tweet about? Here are some suggestions:
Since a large portion of my first book, The Accidental Anarchist, takes place during the Russo-Japanese War, I set up a Google alert to let me know whenever the term “Russo-Japanese War” appears in any publication. The content I choose to blog about often provides interesting information that adds to my readers’ understanding of the Russo-Japanese War and related events. Although I find the most relevant content around the anniversaries of the beginning and end of the War, I’ve been able to share the little-known facts about it on my blog and also on the Facebook Fan Page for my book.
Seeking more content, I added a Google alert on the word “Czar.” This has led to discover some interesting, though often irrelevant, information. For example, instead of directing me to information about Czar Nicholas II, the last Romanov Czar, the alert often introduces me to articles about the Pope’s Finance ‘Czar,’ President Obama’s Ebola ‘Czar,’ and occasional pieces that compare President Vladimir Putin to the former Russian Czars. (However, one tweet I sent out that had to do with President Putin seeking to rehabilitate the image of Czar “Ivan the Terrible” was particularly popular and was retweeted several times.)
In contrast to blogging for The Accidental Anarchist website, when I blog for my Writing and Editing website (BrynaKranzler.com), I share the most useful articles I’ve read about writing and publishing. These come from websites and newsletters to which I subscribe, including John Kremer’s Book Market newsletter, as well as articles from the LinkedIn Groups I belong to: Writers Hangout; Book Marketing; Independently Published Author’s Marketing Association; Ebooks, Ebook Readers, Digital Books and Digital Content Publishing; and Social Media Marketing, among others. I comment on the content and share the advice I find most valuable.
These groups and newsletters give me information that has helped me learn how to market myself and my products more effectively (not that I follow all the advice, and much of it takes time to implement). By culling through the articles on these multiple sites and posting to my blog what I find most valuable, I am able to offer useful content to my Twitter followers (under the hashtag #Writing_Tips).
Instead of blogging every day, or even every week, I spend a few hours once every few weeks and program a series of posts to appear on a predetermined scheduled. I fill out the keyword and SEO fields for each post at the same time. Then I go to Hootsuite where I similarly program tweets with a summary or “teaser” of the content to coincide with publication of the specific blog post.
For further advice on connecting with your readers and many other self-publishing topics, see 9 Critical Steps to Successful Self-Publishing: Get it Right the First Time.