Episode 23: Elizabeth Ann West and Marketing Tools
Writer Mom Life Episode 23: Elizabeth Ann West and Marketing Tools
Elizabeth Ann West is a military wife and homeschooling mom who has been getting paid for her writing for over ten years. She writes Jane Austen derivative fiction but will be branching out into cozy mysteries this year. Diversifying is a big part of her strategy for success, and she talks to Daphne about her goals for this year and next.
Elizabeth also shares:
- Why she only plans 3 weeks at a time
- Why she doesn’t write every day
- How her definition of success has changed as her daughter gets older
- A peek into her author education resources
- Why she is focusing on giving live classes
- Where she gets her indie author news
- What she’d like to tell new authors on the scene (hint: you don’t need to know everything right away! Really!)
(Disclosure: some of the links below are affiliate links. This means that at no cost to you, we get a small commission if you click through and make a purchase.)
– How she trained her dragon! The KBoards post
– Her author education site: What Authors Need to Know (all the KWORKI classes are free! Yay!)
– Her books on Amazon Nook Kobo iTunes Google Play
J. R. Frontera’s Tips and Resources
Today’s tips focus all on some of the various marketing tools we’ve found are key in a self-published author’s arsenal!
1) A newsletter (a way to connect to your readers)
While it is not strictly necessary for a successful author, Daphne and J. R. are both fans of the newsletter. It’s a way to speak directly to readers on a regular basis, and doesn’t have to cost hundreds.
– Mailerlite is free up to 1000 (Daphne uses ML and has more than 2k so pays but gets all sorts of cool integrations now – get a $20 credit if you use her link!)
– Mailchimp is free up to 2000 (J. R. uses this)
– Kindlepreneur compares Aweber, Mailchimp, and GetResponse
2) Distribution (a way to get your books to readers)
– Free books: Instafreebie and Bookfunnel are the two main options here. We both really like Bookfunnel, but see what works best for you! As we say in the episode, things change fast so while Bookfunnel seems to be everyone’s favorite right now, this could change quickly. Instafreebie does have a free option, Bookfunnel starts at $20/year (so nearly free), and their advanced options
– Draft 2 Digital: an aggregator site where you can upload and format for free, and get them onto multiple sites at once (they’ll take a small cut of the royalties for doing this). They now have author pages, so a place to show all your books if you don’t want to have a website (but this is still a good idea, see below!).
3) A website (a way for readers to find you online)
– While there are free options out there (wordpress, weebly, and wix being a few options), do consider investing in a domain name from the start. All together, it shouldn’t cost more than $100-200 which is about $15/month (or a few visits to Starbucks!)
– Five options to consider (from BookBub)
– A Facebook page is a free option if you really don’t want to take the time to set up a site, and also just a generally good idea to have so that you have a space on the world’s largest social media platform.
4) Keyword comparison (a way to position yourself in the market)
– KD Spy and KDP Rocket (also from Kindlepreneur) are two options to get some insight into what keywords and categories are making money on Amazon. Marketing is all about getting eyes on your book, and tweaking your keywords in your book and/or ads is one way to increase the views you’re getting. People can’t buy your book if they don’t see it! These are both paid options, but also work out to be under $10/month.