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Saturday, January 16, 2021

Tips for Authors

Using Tech for Book Marketing

Kate Gingold from Sprocket WebsitesKate has been building websites with her husband Don since 1996 for all sorts of clients, including authors.

Kate regularly writes about online marketing for Sprocket Websites and provides tips and techniques for entrepreneurs and small-business owners. Since being an author today is not really different from being an entrepreneur with a small business, most of those tips are just as useful to authors.

Kate is an author herself. She writes books on local history, including the award-winning "Ruth by Lake and Prairie," a fictionalized account of the true story of Great Lake pioneering to the shores of Chicago and beyond to found Naperville, Illinois. 

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Ruth By Lake and Prairie

Tips for Author Marketing

Nevermind Triple-Threat Entertainers – Try Being an Author!
Kate Gingold Host
/ Categories: Author Tips

Nevermind Triple-Threat Entertainers – Try Being an Author!

They sing! They dance! And of course they can act! Folks make a big deal about entertainers who are considered “triple threat” and actors feel compelled to succeed at all three if they want to be even considered for theater jobs. Authors, unfortunately, face the same unrealistic expectations. 

Most writers start out as readers and reading is not an activity that requires interaction with other human beings. In fact, it’s much better without interacting with other human beings. Sure, cuddling up to read aloud with a loved one can be special, but most of the time, reading is a solitary activity. 

So these readers grow up and work diligently to hone their writing skills because they have been so inspired by incredible book experiences that they want to create the same magic for other readers. Writing, of course, is also not an activity that requires much human interaction. 

Once their book is completed, all an author needs is readers. And that’s never been more difficult for these folks who excel at solitary pursuits. 

Word-of-mouth today is done mainly through social media. To do that, one has to know how to be social, which is not often in a writer’s skill set. Authors might be able to muster up the creativity to write socially-appropriate comments on Facebook or Twitter, but now apparently videos are all the rage. Videos! Not only does one have to research, write and edit a book, now one has to sing, dance and act on video as well! 

That hardly seems fair. It’s not like triple-threat actors also have to be writers. Except – wait - it turns out actors do write books as well. Or at least “co-write” books. And having celebrity already built in is a huge boost when trying to sell books. If an author’s platform features an audience they built through their TV or movie jobs, that usually predicts decent book sales and publishing is just another business, after all.

Writers who have been only writers are being forced to step up their game and somehow become celebrities. They need a face that looks interesting, a voice that sounds intelligent and wit that responds quickly for podcast interviews in order to generate enough buzz to find readers. 

Yes, some writers are really good at this. Kudos to them! But honestly, they are exceptions to the rule. Most authors are not celebrity-material, nor do they really want to be. They just want to create fascinating worlds in their heads, translate those worlds into words, and share them with readers. Which seems to be an unreal expectation. 

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Full disclosure:  Writing for Sprocket Websites is my day job, so if you have questions about digital marketing, I'm happy to help!


Marketing Author Interview

Following a presentation for In Print Professional Writers Group, Kate's husband (and publisher!) Don was interviewed by author Louise Brass for WBOM Radio. During the conversation, Don shared many of the marketing tips from his presentation. You can listen to it online here.

The Sprocket Report

The Sprocket Report is published every other week with Internet marketing tips, tools and techniques. The archive features articles from 2011 up to the present. You are welcome to read how business owners are using technology to market themselves and apply those tips to your author business.

The Sprocket Report


Get a Book Siging Checklist and our Sprocket Report

Kate will be happy to send you her brief Book Signing Checklist. Treat your book promotion like a business - because it is!

AND, since much of your efforts will be online, she'll also enroll you in her Sprocket Report, an email newsletter sent every other Tuesday, that includes 2 Internet Marketing tips and a post from a guest blogger on related business.

No worries! She won't use your email address for anything else, and you can unsubscribe from the newsletter anytime, but the checklist is yours to keep.

Any questions of Kate? Leave them in the message field and she'll get back to you ASAP.

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