Your Blog As A Promotion & Branding Tool

I am super excited to welcome Nina Amir, Inspiration to Creation Coach, who inspires people to combine their purpose and passion so they Achieve More Inspired Results. She motivates both writers and non-writers to create publishable and published products, careers as authors and to achieve their goals and fulfill their purpose.

Nina's new book How to Blog a Book, Write, Publish and Promote Your Work One Post at a Time is of special interest to Becca and I as we go about transforming some of the most popular blog thesauri here into books! 

Do you ever wonder if all that great content you write about each week can and should be converted into a book? If so, this is a very good resource to check out--Nina knows her stuff!


How a Blog Allows You to Promote as You Write
By Nina Amir

Writers write. That’s what we do. That’s what we are good at. And that’s why we balk at promoting ourselves and our books.

We don’t do promotion. It’s not our job. It’s not what we are good at.

Here’s the rub. If we don’t promote ourselves and our books we:

  1. Don’t get book publishing contracts.
  2. Don’t sell many self-published or traditionally published books.
  3. Don’t get many freelance writing jobs.
  4. Don’t make as much money.

That leaves you and me with a few options. If we are stubborn, we can maintain our position: I don’t do promotion. I’m a writer. Period.

Fine. Then ask yourself: Do I want to become a successful writer? If so, define what success means to you.  If success means selling more than the average 250-500 books per year or earning more than a four-figure income per year from writing, you must change your attitude and embrace promotion.

Don’t fret! You can do so simply by writing. You can promote yourself and your forthcoming or published book with a blog.
What to Blog About

Yes, a blog involves a different type of writing in addition to your other writing, but it’s writing! You simply need to commit to writing a short blog post—250-500 words—a few times—2-5—a week. That’s not so bad.

And there are so many things you can write about. I came up with 20 things aspiring and published authors could blog about. Book marketing expert John Kremer came up with 101. Look at the topics you feel passionate about or your forthcoming and published books and come up with a list of possible topics. Make a content plan for each month, if that is easier for you.

Or pick a theme and stick to it. In the process, you’ll become an authority.  You can even do this on many topics. This will help you land more book contracts and writing assignments—and added bonus of blogging.

The Blog as an Author Website and Branding Tool

Still having trouble wrapping your busy writing fingers around this concept? Consider this: Do you write morning pages? Keep a journal? Spend time emailing friends? Blogs began as online journals. Take on blogging as an author website where you can brand yourself by revealing the many aspects of who you are as a writer. Connect with potential readers, let them know more about your through your posts, and show off your awesome writing talent for potential book, newspaper and magazine publishers. (And, of course, feature your published works.)

Simply start your daily writing period with 30-45 minutes of blog writing. Compose a short post about whatever is on your mind that day. You can even add in your own photos and videos easily created on your iPhone or other android phone. Have fun with your blog. Make it a creative statement. 
The Blog as a Writing Machine

If this still seems like a superfluous activity, then get down and dirty with your tactics. Use your blog as a way to write a book. Indeed, blogging a book is the quickest and easiest way to write your book and promote it at the same time. You’ll hardly know you are promoting your work at all!

When you blog a book, you publish your writing regularly and consistently on the internet as you create your first draft. This allows you to garner a loyal following of readers—fans—for your book as you write it. These fans then purchase the finished product. They also help promote your blog and the book when it is published. Plus, if your blog becomes popular, you might land a publishing deal in the process.

Here are the basic steps for blogging a book:

  1. Pick a topic. Choose a topic you are passionate about and can blog about for a long time
  2. Determine if your book is viable. Your book idea should have a large enough market and be unique among existing blogs and books.
  3. Map out your book’s content. Brainstorm all the content that could be in included in your book and organize it a table of contents.
  4.  Come up with a content plan. Determine what content that will appear in the published book but not on the blog.
  5. Break the contents down into posts-sized pieces (250-500 words). Each post should have a title. 
  6. Write and publish posts on a schedule. Write and publish 2-7 times per week for the first 6-12 months; then you can reduce the number of times you post.
  7. Create a manuscript. Write your posts in a word processing program, and then copy and paste them into your blog.

Go ahead. Write. And blog. In the process, promote yourself and your work by doing what you do best. 

The author of How to Blog a Book, Write, Publish and Promote Your Work One Post at a Time, Nina has also self-published 10 short books. A sought after editor, proposal consultant, book and author coach, and blog-to-book coach, Nina’s clients’ books have sold upwards of 230,000 copies and landed deals with top publishers. 

She is the founder of Write Nonfiction in November and writes four blogs, including Write Nonfiction NOW!, How to Blog a Book, and As the Spirit Moves Me. Sign up for a free author, book or blog-to-book coaching session with Nina or receive her 5-Day Published Author Training Series. You can find more about Nina at her website, or follow her on Twitter, Facebook.

9 comments:

Stina Lindenblatt said...

Great post! I know I'll eventually gave to add a different theme to my blog when it comes time for promotion. A theme that is relevant to the stories I write. But for now, I am glad that I'm not trying to sell anything. I'm just blogging for fun.

Grammar Lesson said...

This is a very good tip especially to those new to blogosphere, brief and accurate information… Thanks for sharing this one. A must read article.
Grammar Lesson

Becca Puglisi said...

Thank you for sharing this information, Nina. When Ange and I started our blog, we had no intention of turning the content into a book; it's interesting to see how the process would work from start to finish with that end in mind.

Angela Ackerman said...

I agree with Becca--Had we known from the start what our end goal was, I think we would have gotten here much quicker.

Lately I have read several blog-to-book ventures, and I have to say the content has been strong and book worthy. Blogging is great, but articles get lost over time, and so having it packaged as a book makes for handy resourcing. There is clearly a need and market for this!

Angela

cleemckenzie said...

Setting up my blog was overwhelming when I started. I knew nothing and I didn't want to. Blogging did not interest me in the least. No choice, my publisher said. Promote or else. I've learned a lot by trial and error. It would have been lovely if I'd had some of this book's guidance from the start.

Good to be back from vacation and reading great posts again! Thanks for this one.

Julie Musil said...

Love this advice! I never thought of blogging this way before.

NinaAmir said...

Most bloggers don't start out with a book in mind; that's okay. The problem come when they don't create a content plan before "booking" their blog. The content plan provides for the best book possible. I just suggest you start with that before beginning to blog!

And yes...if only we knew what we know now when we started. I've had to go back and redo my way-too-many categories, find a way to pull together my two websites with a third umbrella website (and lots of branding and logos--all still happening as I write this) and way too many blogs. Authors need counseling and coaching if they want long careers, like the author coaching I provide. They need to see how everything they do pulls together into a career--and how to make that a successful career.

Pity we all just can't write and have it magically happen.

SACRED PARCHMENT said...

Highly inspiring! A whole new look on doing what we like and gaining so much from it. Am greatly impress by this.
More of this benefiting write ups. Amir! Keep it posted.

NinaAmir said...

The reason publishers ask you to set up a blog, cleemckenzie, is because it's such a great promotional tool. Mine could see how presales were tied into my actual posts! It was awesome.

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