Can Your Readers Find You?

I meet authors occasionally who want help promoting their books. One of the first things I do is check to see what sort of presence they have on the Internet.

What happens when you Google your name? How many legitimate results come up? If you are promoting a book, you and your book title should be easy to find.

So how do you build an Internet presence? Here are a few ideas:
• Have a website.
• Create a blog and post often.
• Join or even launch organizations related to your book’s topic/genre.
• Join writers’ organizations and participate.
• Comment on other blogs related to the theme/genre of your book.
• Submit articles or stories to appropriate publications.
• Sign up for various social media—Facebook, Twitter…
• Get your book reviewed over and over again.
• Solicit interviews.
• Request testimonials with regard to your book and/or services.
• Go out and speak on the topic of your book.

I just ran a Google search for my name which quickly resulted in over five million results. Sure, not all of those with my name are me—particularly the obituaries. But thousands (maybe millions) of them are. And there are some repeats. But I think you get the idea from this experiment that my books and I have a presence. When I Google Dan Poynter’s name, I get a little over a million hits. John Grisham has eleven million. Oprah has seventy-five million.

What happens when I Google some of my clients’, students’ and SPAWN members’ names—all authors without much of a platform? I get a few hundred or a few thousand hits (if the name is common).

If you want to know whether or not you have a platform, you might consider Googling your name. Find out how far and wide your reach is? How many people actually know you? How easy is it to find you and to order your book? If the numbers are dismal, do something about increasing your presence online and elsewhere. This is how you build that ever-important authors’ platform.

For additional help with establishing your platform, be sure to read “Publish Your Book.” It’s available at Amazon.com in print, Kindle and audio, as well as most other online and downtown bookstores. Or order it here: http://www.matilijapress.com/PublishYourBook.html

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