America's Lady of Supernatural Thrillers

“Raven's Cove, a great mystery by Mary Ann Poll. Avoid it when winds are gusting to hurricane speed outside. No extra creepiness needed.”
~Bonnye Matthews
Step aside Stephen King, Alaska’s Mary Ann Poll is here to spin new tales of the super-natural and the ungodly, as her heroes and heroines take on the forces of evil on 'The Last Frontier.' ~Jeff Babcock

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Marketing Ideas for Emerging Authors. Do You Have a Plan?

LightbulbIt is an amazing accomplishment to write a book. It is even a greater achievement to navigate the stormy seas of publishing and reach the shore with your finished product. If you chose to publish as an independent author, or if you chose to contract with a non-mainstream publishing house, then it is more than likely up to you to market your book. The obvious question is, “where do I start?”

Here are a few ideas:

I can't say enough about the importance of the internet and social media marketing. In today’s world, social media is one of the most important tools for success.  Other than the author, that is. The most powerful marketing tool is the author. I'll address that later in this blog. Here are some internet marketing ideas:

  • Get a website and start blogging. If you are a do-it-yourselfer, there are many tools out there to help you do this. If not, email me and I will be happy to provide you with the name of a great web development guy who gears websites for authors.
  • Get a good social media strategy. This means being active on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and other social media outlets. If you have it in your budget, you can hire a social media manager. Social media is a complex field and an expert can help you navigate the social media world. Since these managers can expensive, you might want to consider doing it yourself. It takes a couple of hours a day, sometimes more. I have found that no matter how good a social media manager is, they cannot personalize my marketing like I can. I use Sprout Social which has helped me get the word out and is streamlined so I don't spend all of my time posting to different sights.
  • Sign up with Author Central at There you can list your books, post reviews, and obtain many other tools for marketing your book. This is a free service.  Go to, create an account, and you are on the way to marketing your book to those who want to read it.
Following are some ideas that involve an author directly. After all, you, the author, are the most important marketing tool for your book:
  • Set up book signings: if you aren't able to sign at Barnes and Noble or other large retailers, you can contact independent booksellers in your area and arrange signings directly. To do this, your book needs to be on the Indie Bound website. Many independent bookstores are members of this organization and will not consider a signing unless your book is on this site.  The website address is
  • Attend arts and crafts fairs or flea markets: for a nominal fee you can rent a table and hold a signing. These are especially lucrative during the Christmas season but are still a great option at any time of year. People love to talk to authors and, in my personal experience, they really find it special to have a signed copy of a book.  To find these venues in your area, just check your local newspaper for events. Usually, contact information for the fair is provided.
  • Always carry a copy of your book with you. Sales happen at the most unexpected times. I never know when I'm going to meet my next reader. I've met them while buying a house, traveling in the RV, and even at a doctor’s appointment.

I hope some of these ideas will help get your story into the hands of many readers. Let me know if you find success with any of these ideas.

Until next  time…….


This entry was posted in Author tips, Inspirational, Writing Tips. Bookmark the permalink.

7 Responses to Marketing Ideas for Emerging Authors. Do You Have a Plan?

  1. margaret peterson says:

    Thanks for your specific advice and the links to them. I can see myself doing all of these events. I see your blog is powered by WordPress. I don't know anything about Joomla! extension by 'corePHP'. Why is this necessary. Do you buy rights to your domain name?


    Margie Peterson in Saint Paul, Minnesota

    • mapoll says:

      I am glad to see these ideas are helpful. There are so many more and not enough room to write them all. The author marketing world changes so rapidly. I am fortunate to have a webmaster. My husband happens to be an IT guru and created my webpage. He also does this for other authors. Joomla is a state of the art web platform. So he builds in Joomla and then integrates the blog (which is WordPress) into the webpage. I do have rights to my domain name but most people do not when they go through a webmaster. The most important thing about a webpage is this: It is 24/7 advertising. You may not get sales through a webpage but if you post blogs weekly, and add content (like reviews) on a regular basis, then your name and your webpage will come up more quickly on a search – which then gets your name and books out to the public. Thanks for your comment!

  2. Patricia Plake says:

    Please tell me the difference between a website and a blog. Are both of them needed? What will a website do that a blog will not do?

    It appears that having both is a bit redundant. What am I missing here?  My book is going to the printer soon and I want to get prepared by setting up a good marketing avenue. Would certainly appreciate your help.

    Patricia Plake

    • mapoll says:

      Hello, Patricia: This is a great question. I will try and answer to the best of my ability. A full website is a professional look. Which is what any business wants. As an author, you want your readers to know you are a professional. Also, a website is all inclusive. If you have looked at mine, it focuses on my books, my bio, reviews, events I will be attending and even a way to sell books to those who want personalized copies. The full website keeps interesting information at the ready for visitors to the site. It includes my blog. It gives the public information about me as an author and my books. A blog is a journal of ideas for the public. It is another way to get your name out to the folks on the internet, but it is only one component for advertising yourself and your books.  I really appreciate your questions. Good luck with your publishing and writing endeavors!

    • Wendy Owen says:

      A blog is the samr as a website, but probably more active. You can have a website without an attached blog, but it's more like an on-line brochure.

  3. Thanks for the great article. It's always helpful to swop tips, as marketing is pretty hard for newbies! 

    I'll be trying all your ideas, asap. 🙂 

    • mapoll says:

      Hello, Gail! I am so pleased these ideas are helping you! The book marketing world is ever changing but there are some basics, like the ones I posted, that seem to be constant. Your comment is much appreciated. Thank you!

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