JillWilliamsonACFWHeadshotAn influencer is someone who dedicates themselves to helping spread the word about your book. You, or your publisher, compensate them by giving them a free copy of the novel.

Influencers can have a wide variety of influence. Maybe they are a librarian. Or a pastor’s wife. Or a school teacher. Or someone with a popular blog. Maybe they are a book reviewer. Or maybe they aren’t any of those things but do a great job at spreading the word about books.

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JillWilliamsonNewSmallYour publisher will likely submit your book for review to some people and magazines. Just because they do doesn’t mean everyone will review it. It also doesn’t mean every review posted will be a positive one. That’s the nature of book reviews.

So why bother?

Because people notice. Maybe some people read online reviews. Maybe they don’t. But most people notice whether a book has 0, 15, or 400 book reviews. And that tells a potential reader something right away. It tells them whether or not people are reading the book.

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Amazon Author Central
Once your book is listed on Amazon.com, you can set up and Amazon Author Central page, which is a page Amazon customers can click on to learn more about you and your books. Author Central pages will be linked to all your product pages on Amazon.com.

First, go to this link and log in to Amazon.com. http://tinyurl.com/2ats3cp. An information page will come up. At the bottom is the option to “Join Now.” Click on that. Accept their terms and agreements, then follow the steps to set up your page. You’ll have to select your books from the list. You can also add your author picture, a bio, a link to your blog, more pictures, a video or book trailer, and participate in discussions that readers start.

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If you are a published (or an almost published) author, you must have a professional-looking website where readers can find out more about you and your books. Take a look at mine: www.jillwilliamson.com. It’s far from the best author website out there, but it’s free. And free is good. I made the whole thing with a WordPress blog. It was easy to do and there were a number of website templates to choose from. If and when I can afford to pay someone to make me an amazing website, I will. Until then, I have a site that I can update myself and is easy to use. Here are some tips to consider:

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JillWilliamsonNewSmall As you may have heard, your book is not likely to sell itself. Marketing and publicity is hard work. The whole secret is to determine who your target readers are and how to get in front of them (in a non threatening way, of course). So, even if your book isn't out yet, you should start promoting now.
 
As I blog about marketing and publicity, I'm going to share everything I've learned in my experience over the past few years. I’m far from an expert, but I know my efforts have made a difference in the success of my novels.

The first thing you should do is sit down and brainstorm. Make a long list of things you’d like to do. Website, postcards, bookmarks, T-shirts, influencer copies, etc. Take your time and keep this list handy so that you can add to it when you have new ideas and refer to it when you have a new novel coming out.

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