The one aspect of self publishing that almost every indie author finds difficult is marketing. Trying to sell your shit is a thankless and monumentally difficult task and with today’s proliferation of indie authors and the ease with which we can all get our shit published, it gets harder each and every day. The sheer number of authors all vying for the attention of readers means that most non authors are now numb to the fact that your shit is also out there because it’s lost amongst all the other shit.
The only way to get your work noticed is to be aggressive about your marketing and bombard every available platform with your ads. You need a really thick skin and a ruthless attitude to the sensitivities of others and just post, post, post.
I have a lot of authors and writer folks on my friend list at both facebook and twitter and many of them are far more ruthless than I am at marketing. There are many on my facebook list who I have just had to ‘hide’ from my wall because their relentless posts about their books got too much for me. I fail to understand why these people think I’d want to buy their books when they can’t spare a moment to ‘like’ my facebook author page or repost one of my ads. Seriously folks, either wake up and realise that if you want me to do something for you, you have to do something for me, or fuck off.
My problem is that I lack the self esteem necessary to ruthlessly post my ads without caring whether other folks want to see them or not. I don’t have the nerve to walk into shops and ask the manager if I can gift him a copy of my book. I’d sooner be strung up by my nipples than stand up and shout about my shit and that’s my downfall. Deep down inside there’s still that scared little autistic girl who believes she is unworthy of everything and although I know I write well and all the reviews my books have received have been fantastic, I still worry about selling myself.
What I do is post about my books once a day with a direct ‘buy’ link and then do another post alluding to my books without a direct ‘buy me’ approach (see my ‘endorsed by the great and mighty’ blog posts.
At the end of the day, what I need is for people to first know my books exist so that they can then choose whether to buy them or not. There are many ways to keep people aware without the hard sell approach and I feel more comfortable utilising this less direct approach. I’ve made a poster for the rear window of my car with pictures of my books and a plea for support. People see it when I’m parked in the supermarket and you never know, it might encourage a few curious peeks at them.
If you don’t have the balls to use the direct hard sell approach, then think outside the box. There’s more than one way to swing a cat, as they say.