Marketing, PR & Publicity

My sales aren’t terrible, but they’re not terrific either. I won’t be quitting my day job any time soon. So the hubby and I sat down the other night and discussed my marketing techniques and we came to the same conclusion: I’m sh*t at sales. This is not a good thing when you’re a writer and need to be able to sell not only your books, but yourself as well. Also, I’ve just set up a new freelance editing business – my marketing skill mean the future does not bode well.

But why? Why am I so shocking at selling myself? Hubby thinks it might be because I don’t relate to my target audience – married women in their 30s. But I’m a married woman in my 30s! How can I not relate? I would much rather be sat on my ass playing games or watching action and thriller movies than I would rom-coms or doing the housework. Surely I’m not alone in this? I can’t be so far from the stereotypical housewife that I’m bodering on being a man?

Maybe it’s my brand. I’ve discussed branding before. I’m never going to be a sexy woman who flaunts everything she’s got – I’m comfortable in my skin, but I’m even more comfortable in a pair of skinny jeans and a baggy T-shirt. I figured my brand would be “houswife with a cup of tea”. But I’m not that either. Yeah, I drink tea, but housewifey? Nah… Like I said, I hate housework. I’m never going to be the girl-next-door or competing for Housewife of the Year.

Poster

Flyers, bookmarks and postcards get shoved into every paperback copy of Seven Dirty Words

So now I’m googling marketing, pr, publicity and books. But every blog says the same thing:

*Set up a Facebook account. Check. Readers can friend me or like my page. (Chowardauthor or Charlottehowardauthor)

*Tweet. Lots. Check. (@shy_tiger) I have in excess of 800 followers.

*Build an author kit. Check, check and check! I have a website (www.charlottehowardauthor.co.uk and http://www.rwls.co.uk) I hand out business cards, flyers, postcards and bookmarks with every copy of Seven Dirty Words I sell. I take them all to any events like Smut.UK and stuff them into hands, goody bags and books. I have a street team who do the same.

*Connect with your readers. Check. I try to converse on Facebook and Twitter with readers and other writers – okay I’m a bit lax in the forum department,  but only because I don’t want to be a pushy, in-your-face, BUY MY FRIGGING BOOK kind of author.

*Keep writing. Double check. Four novels, one short story published, one recently submitted, and another one being written.

So I give up. I’ve decided that I really couldn’t sell toffee to kids and looking for a PR company to represent me.

My dream was to have a publishing contract by the age of 30, and I did that. My next goal is to be a best-seller before I’m 35. 2 years to go. Let’s see what this week brings…

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