Are you using any of these annoying book marketing tactics?

Reading time: Less than 1 minute

This is my weekly installment of “writing about writing,” in which I scan the world to find websites, books and articles to help other writers. Today I discuss a blog post about annoying book marketing tactics…

I laughed aloud when I read the first sentence of a recent blog post on book marketing by Shayla Raquel. Here’s how she began:

As a little sister, no one had to teach me how to be annoying. It came naturally. And for some authors, being annoying when marketing their books seems to come naturally to them too. And we’re all sick and tired of it. It’s 2020, and it’s time for authors to stop marketing their books like a sleazy nickel-flipping salesman in a back alley.

Amen, sister! Those of us who’ve written books understand too well the thousands of hours — and frequently, many dollars — we’ve poured into our projects. But that expenditure doesn’t give us the right to be self-centred divas, expecting promotion from other people, as if it were our God-given right.

Shayla lists 20 “sins” all of which are worth reading. But let me give extra emphasis to five here:

  • Sending a message via Facebook or a DM via Instagram asking someone to buy your book when you don’t even know that person.
  • Sending out email newsletters overflowing with sales tactics and with absolutely no value.
  • Acting like a negative book review is the most horrible thing that could ever happen to you as an author.
  • Sending out emails to your subscribers such as “We broke the server!” or “Sorry about that!” or “Re: [original title],” making it look as if they had emailed you and you’re replying back.
  • Adding someone to your email newsletter without his or her consent, which is against the CAN-SPAM Act.

Desperate to promote their books, authors may sometimes feel tempted to employ less than honourable techniques. Squelch that urge in yourself! Review Shayla’s list, and resolve to stop engaging in annoying book marketing tactics.

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