Do You Suffer From Marketing Inadequacy?

The success some authors have in marketing their books can overwhelm writers or even cause them to give up

Do You Suffer From Marketing Inadequacy?Last week we talked about how to deal with writer envy, of how to avoid having the abilities of other writers overwhelm us. While the threat of writer envy does assault me from time to time, I’ve mostly come to peace with my writing ability. I know I am good and am getting better. I may never be really great, but I’m okay with that – most of the time.

However, the flip side of writing ability is marketing proficiency. I must admit that I sorely struggle with my lack of promotional prowess. I’ve taken classes (even at the graduate level) and understand the theory. I know what to do, yet my gut churns when it comes to implementation. Too often it feels smarmy. Yet when I press through, I do well, but too often, I don’t bother to push myself to act.

I see other authors who successfully promote their books into the stratosphere of success, book after book. Their results devastate me – especially when the book isn’t well written. The sad reality is that a marketing maven doesn’t need to write a good book to make a lot of money. They just need to excel at marketing. I am envious.

So if we’re not good at book marketing, don’t want to do it, or even feel it is beneath the art, what are we to do?What is an author to do who isn’t good at marketing their books? Click To Tweet

Give Up: We could just forget our passion to write, our dream to create art, and move on to a less frustrating, more profitable career. Yet would that make us truly happy? Or would an unsatiated compulsion to write roil in our souls? I think we all know the answer.

Ghostwrite: Writing for others as a ghostwriter, writer for hire, or collaborator allows us to write – and earn money – without the need to market. I like this. I do this. Yet I also want to see my name on the cover. True ghostwriting assignments don’t provide that option.

Write But Don’t Market: This is a built-it-and-they-will-come mentality. We focus on the art of writing and forget about the business of writing. In rare instances it works. Usually not. Don’t pin your hopes on this strategy.

Outsource Marketing: I’d love to hire someone to do all my marketing for me. It would be so freeing. Yet two questions nag at me: Would it be cost-effective? (likely not), and would they produce acceptable results? (doubtful).

Press Through: Every job has fun aspects that we like and other chores that are, well, chores. We must slog through the difficult toils to resume the joys of creation.

I’ve considered each of these five responses. I often vacillate between them. Though I seldom consider quitting any more, the other four considerations pop up each week. I don’t have an answer, but as I try to figure one out, I will continue to write.

What is your view on marketing your work? How do you balance marketing with writing? Please share your thoughts in the comment section below.

2 thoughts on “Do You Suffer From Marketing Inadequacy?

  1. I struggle a lot with the marketing aspect! I’m wondering if any of your readers (or you) have an opinion about FaceBook Boosts! Is it best to boost your individual blogs or to boost your entire blog site? And any tips to translate FB likes to newsletter or blog subscriptions!

    I look forward to your blog every weekend! Thanks.

    • Patti, you ask a great question. I wish I had a great answer!

      I’ve heard of authors who have given up on Facebook and others who find their biggest audience there.

      I recently listened to an author who boosts every Facebook post that links back to her blog. She limits it to $5 per post. Of course once they get to her blog/website, she has a capture magnet to get them on her mailing list and has products (in addition to books) to sell them. So for her, it’s a cost-effective expenditure.

      Hopefully some of our other readers will have some Facebook insight for us.

What do you think? Please leave a comment!