Wednesday, April 19, 2006

Another Reader Connection

How does an author connect with their readers? Like many things in publishing, there is not one way but many different methods. First, it takes an excellent book. The foundation of any new book has to include excellent, page-turning writing. So if you haven’t mastered that element, keep it in focus and continue to work on your craft through shorter magazine articles and learning everything you can learn—such as at conferences and through how-to books.

Yet many well-crafted books don’t make it into the hands of readers. In previous entries, I’ve written about the many different snares and traps in the process of selling a book into the hands of customers. Yet as an author, I’m constantly looking for any avenue to connect with my reader.  Why? While you may do it unintentionally, every author is in the process of building name recognition and a brand. You want people to love your last book so they are eager for the release of your next product.


In recent months, the largest online bookstore on the planet, Amazon.com has launched Amazon Connect.  Each day authors of all persuasions are joining this effort. Whether you have one book or many books in print, I believe it’s worth knowing about and some level of involvement.  Almost any book can be purchased on Amazon.com—whether it comes from a large publisher or it is self-published.

The process is fairly painless—yet has some cautions. Amazon wisely forces authors to provide the name, email and phone number of a third party to “verify” that you are the author of the book. This verification person can be an agent, a publicist or an editor and they receive an email with a simple button to push.  The books which you select are then verified and connected to your Amazon blog.  To try out this system, I selected my last three published books and they were verified—but they were not connected until I made another entry in the Amazon.com blog. After I published this entry, the books instantly were connected to my blog—and to my author profile.  Here’s a couple of my examples: Book Proposals That Sell and Running On Ice. Scroll down on these pages and you will see my profile and my Amazon blog entry. Notice within the blog, you are allowed to provide web links and other information.  Here’s how my author profile appears on Amazon.

Is this connection the ultimate one that will solve all your book sales problems and connect you constantly to your readers? I’m enough of a realist to not push this connection too far. It’s just one more tool to add to your arsenal of marketing efforts to reach readers.


2 Comment:

At 2:32 AM, Blogger Mary DeMuth Left a note...


As you can see I've become your friend on Amazon. I'm also an Amazon connect user and am so far very happy with it. My question is, what is the benefit of having amazon friends?

At 6:19 AM, Blogger Terry Whalin Left a note...


I don't know that I've got this Amazon friends thing figured out at all. It looks to me like the idea sprinkgs from how people have similar reading tastes. This friends connection gives another more focused choice for the customer who is looking for more focused choices. That's my guess at the reasoning. It will be interesting to see how it develops. Thank you for becoming one of my friends. Together we'll make this journey.



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