Self-published Authors Who Blog: Do You Provide Your Readers Useful Content?
As a self-published author with a newly released title, I find myself taking advantage of every single opportunity that I can to promote Skipping Childhood: A Novel (From Abused Foster Child to Adolescent Serial Killer). See, I just did it 🙂 But seriously; as indie authors, we have to be quick to recognize the different promotional opportunities that exist and be sure to use them to our benefit. Effective book marketing consists of so many different activities. For many self-published authors, this spells blogging, because writing regular blog posts is a good way to build a following of readers. That leads us to the question: What exactly should we blog about?
Website and Blog Themes
One important thing to consider about your author website or related blog is what the overall theme will be. Whether you’re a self-published author who writes fiction, or you publish non-fiction books, there is one thing that both types of writer has in common; the publishing process. This is always a great theme. After all, you gained a lot of useful information and experience. You successfully managed to write, edit, revise, publish and start promoting a book. That is why most new authors who setup author websites and blogs choose to write about the whole writing and publishing process. This is usually the first blog and website endeavor for most newbie authors.
Some self-published authors create blogs or websites specifically as a book companion site. This type of companion blog or website offers practical ways for you to keep conversations going about your book. Both of these general themes help to give you something to focus on when you choose topics and content for your site. There are benefits to providing information about your personal self-publishing journey and the writing process, as well as discussing characters, settings and themes from your latest book. But talking about yourself or your book is not enough if you’re the only one who derives benefit from it. The question we have to ask ourselves is: When I write my blog and website content, does it benefit someone other than me?
Why Should the Reader Care?
I came to a realization the other day, one that made me commit to providing content that the reader cares about and not just me. Writing about the art and business of writing has always been appealing to me, even before I started publishing my own ebooks online. I gained a lot of first-hand knowledge and experience as an online freelance and ghost writer, so blogging about writing comes easy. When my urban coming of age novel was released on December 1, 2016, I began promoting it on my author website, my blog about self-publishing, and my newest blog; a companion to the book. I’ve been trying to write interesting and engaging content on both platforms.
At first I felt like that’s what I was doing but recently I wrote a simple post about something that I realized may have only been important to me. As I considered what I posted, I asked myself the above question (…does it benefit someone other than me) Although I was actually able to find some valuable points to the reader in what I posted, I still feel I could have pointed the benefits out a lot better. Readers who take the time to read our posts should feel like it was worth their effort and that they have somehow benefited.
Recent Useful Posts
As I began to look over some of the posts on my website and blogs, I was happy to find that I’ve been posting some useful content and not merely self-promoting. This is not to say that there is anything wrong in promoting yourself or your book titles. I’m 200% behind self-promotion, but the only way to gain readers who continue to visit and eventually buy your books is to make them glad to read what you write.
From now on, I’ve decided to commit a special section in some part of my post to address the benefits to the reader. This will help me stay focused on always giving the reader something worth taking away. Are you a new self-published author trying to build an author platform and a readership for your title(s)? If you are, you definitely want to consider the points in this post and re-examine your own content. Make sure that you’re always providing your readers with useful content.
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