Reviewed by Christopher Richards
“Give me six hours to chop down a tree, and I will spend the first four hours sharpening the ax,” said Abraham Lincoln. Fauzia Burke’s book, Online Marketing for Busy Authors: A Step-by-Step Guide, is about preparing to generate readership for your book.
Writers like to write. Even the thought of building a personal brand and getting into the business of marketing can give writers the heebie-jeebies. Ms. Burke knows this. Her friendly and easy-to-read book is a gentle guide for the perplexed, and a resource for people already doing online marketing.
Ms. Burke establishes her credibility as a digital marketing pioneer with a dizzying list of big-name authors she’s helped to promote their books.
She structures Online Marketing for Busy Authors into three parts:
- Getting organized,
- Turning thinking into action,
- Staying the course.
In the first section, Ms. Burke asks, “What is your online brand?” She follows with related questions to help discover your niche, your reader, and what you want your book to do.
Her straightforward language makes this book easy reading. She demonstrates the important theme of connection with the reader. You get the impression that Ms. Burke is right there with you dispensing practical advice in her optimistic style.
She offers something for everyone. Online Marketing for Busy Authors includes advice from publishers and authors such as start early, keep your name out there, get help, and invest in your own success. Not everything will work for everyone, so it’s important to find out what works for you and do more of it. Discard the rest.
Authors can be overwhelmed by social media choices. An author without a website is like a bird without wings. An author website is her top priority, followed by mailing lists, a blog, and participation in social media.
Success on social media isn’t necessarily about huge followings, but about developing a qualified list of readers interested in what you have to say. Social media done right is personal and friendly. And Ms. Burke offers sage advice on how to behave online.
Marketing for the long-haul
Online Marketing for Busy Authors doesn’t propose quick fixes. Advice is aimed at sustainability such as creating quality content and keeping an editorial calendar for blogging. Some suggestions will need both time and effort. Ms. Burke writes that conversation with readers is a privilege, and connections are built up one person at a time.
Despite how busy authors may be, they must still carve out time for marketing. The good news is that social media participation and blog post development can be done in small regular increments.
Online Marketing for Busy Authors is available in paper and digital versions. The paper version doubles as a workbook for inserting answers to self-help questions. This book will make busy authors even busier. Yet at least they will be doing the right things.
It’s time to sharpen the ax.
Disclaimer: Christopher Richards is a business book ghostwriter and has no affiliation with the author of this book.