If you build it, they will come is not an effective marketing strategy for authors. Readers need to know a book is available and this doesn’t happen by itself. On the flip side, getting on social media to post “buy my book” does not inspire readers to purchase it.
But taking the time to strategically and patiently build a tribe of readers through an email list and newsletter, is the perfect way to create a loyal following. Seth Godin, marketing genius, says, “selling to people who actually want to hear from you is more effective than interrupting strangers who don’t.” And an author newsletter is the perfect way to do this.
Here are 3 tips to build your email list.
- List Building Promotions
These are a fast and easy way to get a lot of readers in a short amount of time. CraveBooks hosts genre-specific list-building giveaways throughout the year. The way these work is authors sign up for the giveaways that fit their genre. Then CraveBooks reaches out to readers through Facebook Ads who enjoy that genre. The readers sign up for the contest where they have a chance to win a Kindle Fire and the ebooks of the participating authors. Once the giveaway is finished, authors get the list of readers to add to their email list.
- Create a Reader Magnet
Having something free you can give readers in exchange for their email address is another great way to build your newsletter list. A free reader magnet can be a complete novel, a short story, resources (if you write nonfiction) or an excerpt from your novel. If all you have is one novel published, you don’t want to use that for your reader magnet. Instead create a short story that is related to your novel. Upload your reader magnet to your CraveBooks account and then direct people to it through social media posts, Facebook Ads or with a notification if you are a Gold or Platinum CraveBooks member. When readers download the free ebook, their email address shows up in your CraveBooks author dashboard. Then you can add it to your newsletter list.
- Include Links in your Ebooks
To encourage readers to sign up for your newsletter, add a link to your sign-up page that you hopefully have on your website. Include this link with a little info about your newsletter (how often you send it, what you include in it…) in the back matter of your book. This is the section at the end of your book, after, “The End” where you include info about your other books, the about the author page and other fun information you want to add. This is also a great place to include a link to your free reader magnet. You can also add the links to your newsletter and reader magnet to the front of the book on the copyright page.
A newsletter that you consistently send out is a great way to stay connected to your readers. It is worth the time and energy to create one and continue to build the number of readers on your email list.