Tag Archives: author platform

Getting a Domain Name – Two Choices

It has been my belief for a very long time that authors need to develop a marketing plan as soon as they have an outline for their book. Why? Because building an author platform takes time. Authors should have their platform in place BEFORE they do a cover reveal and/or launch their book.

One thing every author needs is a website. This is the center of your web of influence on the internet. The author’s website holds static information (things not likely to change) such as a bio, photograph, book cover graphic, synopsis of the book, one-sheet, and press releases along with various links to all the other social media networks and marketing connections.

So you need a domain name first. Do you opt for your author or pen name or do you get your book title? I would suggest both but please start with your author or pen name. You would be surprised how many authors write their book and don’t even check to see if “their name” is available. If an author has a common name like “John Smith” this could cause lots of confusion. Even if you have a fairly uncommon name like “Cheryl Callighan” you would be surprised to know there is another “Cheryl Callighan” out there. However her middle initial is “L” and mine is “K”. A simple but important detail.

And a book title URL? That can be tricky. If you’re going to buy your book title in URL form check before you finalize your book and print it. You might need to tweak the name a little if your title isn’t available for a URL.

Here are some Domain Name tips:

1. Never let anyone else purchase your domain for you. Buy it yourself so you own it and can directly manage it. You can give a web designer or assistant permission and access to your domain but please buy it yourself. You’ll save yourself a lot of headaches down the road.

2. If you’re purchasing your book title domain please make it compact, memorable and easy to type.

*Avoid hyphenated domain names. They are hard to remember and hard to type.

3. Purchase a .com extension.

4. If at all possible, use keywords in your domain name. Keywords that relate to your book’s title.

5. Make sure your domain name is also available as a user name on other social media accounts like Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Google and Yahoo email ID.

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January 27, 2014 · 10:59 am

Author’s Assistant or Publisher?

What is the difference?

I am not a publisher. I will not ask you to pay me a one-time package price to get your book published.

I am an author’s assistant. I will help you navigate the self-publishing journey through my experience, advice and assistance.

Why is this a good thing?

It’s a great thing for self-published authors who want to maintain complete control over their books and their publishing process.

It has been my experience that the majority of self-published authors are employed either full or part-time and writing is their passion but they need the steady income to support their lifestyle and families. As an author’s assistant I can help them with tasks and projects they don’t have the time or skills to do themselves.

For example, helping build the author’s platform for a new author I can create:

  • A new Facebook Fan Page
  • Set up a Twitter account
  • A LinkedIn account
  • Design a WordPress website or blog
  • Connect all of the above for automatic updating and notifications

An author’s assistant can research for the perfect editor, gather permissions for quotes or other excerpts, work with the graphic designer to finalize the book cover, etc.

The author has complete control of the tasks the author’s assistant does and to what extent the author’s assistant is involved. The author can create a budget for these tasks and the author’s assistant can make sure the entire book publishing process is kept on track and completed on time.

 

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Filed under Marketing, Publishing, Writing

What comes first, your book or your author platform?

Ideally you should be building your author platform prior to the launch of your book. Unfortunately, most authors are consumed with the book writing process then the manuscript polishing, editing, formatting, book cover design, etc.

Once you have clarity about your book, whether it’s the plot for your fiction novel or the message of your fiction book, you should start immediately and simultaneously building your author platform. You can begin to build the “buzz” you need in your target readership and ramp up interest and hopefully sales prior to the launch.

So what is an author platform? Briefly (because this will be cover in subsequent posts) it’s your branding as an author and the branding for your book. You should have the following:

– Website – 5 pages, about you the author, about your book, media page, order page, contact form page. You can add additional pages for example, a integration page for your blog.

– Social media venues – Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Pinterest, and your blog just to name a few. You might consider adding a YouTube account for your book trailer or for informational videos you may wish to produce.

*Social media is a powerful tool for new authors. The cost is nil and your time is the biggest investment.

I love this quote from Dan Poynter’s book, Successful Nonfiction

“Writing a book is a creative act.
A finished book is a product.
Selling a book is a business.”

Quick Tip: Once you have your title and subtitle selected, get a front cover designed. You can use the graphic of your front cover to promote your book on your website, in Facebook posts, Tweets and in your signature line for emails. Start building that brand!

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Filed under Marketing