How Online Visibility Helps Authors Get Published

More and more often, publishers are requiring authors have “platforms” before considering their books for publication. Many authors, however, especially those who are unpublished, wonder how they’ll generate a “platform” if no one will publish their book.

Call it a platform, a community, a following, or a tribe, it’s much easier increasing one’s visibility to readers these days, thanks to the Internet and the World Wide Web. Authors who are passionate about the subject of their book can easily blog about said subject or speak to local groups or write columns for appropriate periodicals, thus creating the “platform.” When readers discover useful and valuable information in those blogs or columns or speeches, they’ll gladly tell their friends and associates. Many will recommend authors or books in their own blogs.

Today’s tip: Make your blog useful to readers. David Meerman Scott tells about an author who wrote about overcoming a persistent ailment and created a blog to sell his book. The blog looked like your traditional direct mail piece most of us discard between our trek from the mailbox back to our recliners. Very little traffic and even lower sales.

So the author switched the focus of his blog from selling his book to helping readers overcome similar afflictions. He began posting accurate information about his ailment’s causes, conditions and treatments. Soon his site became the most-read blog on the Internet for that subject, and the Amazon ranking of his book increased significantly, meaning more book sales. The author reports he used to be afraid of “giving away” content from his book, now he realizes customers reward him for doing just that.

What’s your book about? If it’s chemistry, write about new discoveries or give readers a chapter from your latest title. If you write biography, blog about interesting facts from the life of the person about whom you’re writing. If you write textbooks, tell readers how they, too, can research and write top-quality textbooks.

There are more opportunities for helping people improve their lives than there are authors and books written.

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