Finding New Readers

Many authors view marketing their books as a necessary evil to be endured rather than enjoyed. This can be true if our entire focus is on simply finding people—any people—to buy our books, and sharing our book blurbs, book links, and other book related things every day, generally in the same places and with the same people. Marketing doesn’t only have to be this way though. You can find new readers without doing so to the exclusion of all else, and enjoy yourself in the process too.

Us scribblers naturally gravitate to each other, and there is a lot of fun to be had socializing with our own kind. It’s great chatting with like-minded people who are knowledgeable in our ways. Our families and “normal” friends are not going to want to talk about formatting and cover design, and are most unlikely to instigate any conversations about grammar. Authors, whether Indie or traditionally published all need the support of our tribe, whether to cheer us on when we hit walls, celebrate our successes, or generally to inspire us with their own stories and knowledge. As well as having fun with our online writer buddies, we should also find out what our “thing” is, and move around in places where we’ll find people interested in that in order to increase our readership.

So, what is your “thing”? Yes—writing is your thing, but unless you write about writing then you’re going to have something else that you’re an expert at. Do you write historical fiction? Detective thrillers? Science-fiction? All of these things also have other things within them that could be your “thing”. Are you fascinated with England’s royalty, American politics, serial killers or faster than light travel? All of these topics and thousands more have thousands of fans who are not also writers. They gather online in groups on Linkedin, G+, Facebook, or specific websites and forums.

Do you actively participate in groups that are interested in aspects of your expertise related to your fiction or non-fiction? If not, you should consider joining a few. Finding these places is easy using the search engines on each site, or even just using Google search. Don’t join in your capacity as an author and try and sell your book. Rather enjoy the fellowship of those who share your passions and let others be keen enough to seek out your books because you yourself have interested them. Obviously, don’t hide the fact that you write westerns or whatever subject it is that the group is about—just don’t talk about your books all the time. Have fun interacting as simply another person, and you could find a whole group of new readers while you’re at it.

Follow non-writing blogs, join groups, and interact in places where people share your passions as who you are and without the obvious end result being to sell your books. If you haven’t considered what your “thing” is before, then set aside a few moments to think about it. Don’t be self-deprecating with this. What are you knowledgeable about? What are you passionate about? Find your “thing” and use it to find new readers.

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19 thoughts on “Finding New Readers”

  1. Great post, Jo! I’ve been thinking about that a lot, as I have been worried about lack of book sales in the past weeks. While I can’t be on marketing roll all the time, joining groups can be a bit daunting to me as I am never sure of how much participation I can sustain and I feel bad for joining, talking in a couple of things and then poof.

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  2. Good advice, and it’s fun hanging out with people who share similar interests. My books are aimed at young people though. My sons tell me they’re all on instagram and snap chat etc. If I tried hanging out with them there Their parents would accuse me of being less than respectable, so that’s a big nono! 😁 I’ll save that for visiting schools. In the meantime, I try and find groups where people are interested in myths and Ireland and archaeology, but sometimes all this online socialising gets so time consuming and exhausting!

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