Fleur Camacho has kindly been sharing my posts on her blog. She came up with a great idea for a post on blogging efficiently in order to promote your books, which I was more than happy to host here. She’s the author of TRISTEN, a teen & YA magical, fantasy, paranormal, & adventure novel, currently on a 99c sale on Amazon.

Using Leverage to Efficiently Market Your Books While You Write

Ever since I read my first blog post on Nicholas’s blog, I was hooked.  He is open, insightful, helpful and efficient.  I’ve mostly focused on building a targeted following on twitter but when I read his post about blogging, I knew that it was time for me to take a step forward with my marketing.

I’m the kind of person that once I decide to do something, I want to do all of it, all at once, and perfect the first time around.  When I decided to self-publish, I forced myself to take things one step at a time (I think that decision has kept me sane).  One thing I’ve learned as a self-pubbed author is that the more marketing tools I use, the better and further it will reach.

First, let’s talk about using others

Somewhere I read that we should use others to help you build your blog so that you can spend more time writing.  I use the weekends to work on my blog.  This is because I have kids and I can’t write my novel when they’re around.  But I can work on my blog.  I write one blog post, and I gather 3 other posts from other writers / bloggers.  Nicholas focuses on helping other authors.  My other 2 contributors’ posts (Tanya and Jesse) are geared more towards my genre, which is Young Adult.  I spend this time tailoring their posts to fit the style of my blog.  By the end of Sunday night, I have 4 quality blog posts that are scheduled to post (we’ll talk more about that later) during the week.  This is such a great way to use others!  Posting that many times during the week will increase your visibility a hundred million times!  (Ok, not really, but maybe Nicholas’ stat friend, Tara Sparling, can tell you the right number)

The really super great thing about it is that you aren’t just using people, but you are helping them as well.  I don’t ask Nicholas or Jesse to write anything they haven’t already posted on their blog, so they aren’t doing too much extra work.  Plus, they get extra exposure from the people who read my blog.  And I always add their website, Amazon page or a link to the original post at the end of the my post.  I love that we both get so much out of the relationship.

How to schedule Your Blog

I also like to leverage technology to help me. USE TECHNOLOGY TO SPEND TIME POSTING YOUR BLOG, SO YOU DON’T HAVE TO.

Here is a of Nicholas’ next post.  On the right hand side, when I click on ‘schedule’ it asks if I want to auto schedule it, or schedule it myself.  Personally, just because of the way that I’m structuring my marketing, I schedule it myself. This allows me to maximize its impact, as you will see below.

From the blog of Nicholas C. Rossis, author of science fiction, the Pearseus epic fantasy series and children's books

When to schedule Your Blog

Interesting factoid: I use the web browser Safari, and recently it’s been driving me crazy because it… is… so… slow.  So I downloaded the Chrome browser.  Around this time was when I discovered Nicholas’ blog and had been reading through it (okay, there is a point to all this!!)  In the morning, I look at my phone to check out the weather (I have an android phone) and WOW!!  I received a notification on Google Now that Nicholas posted something.   How cool is that?? What an amazing piece of technology!! I hadn’t signed up to be notified of this (sorry Nicholas!), but it gave it to me anyways.

Now, Blogger tells me that the highest percentage of my readers use Chrome.

And so, I’ve decided to post at 6am in the morning, in the hopes that people who read my blog on Chrome will receive a notification in the morning, which they can read whenever it’s most convenient to them during the day.

Using the power of Google technology to promote my blog to someone who has already shown interest in it is very powerful.  Plus, I won’t pay a dime for this promotion!

What about the 80/20 rule?

I am a strong believer in the 80/20 rule.  Spend 80% of your time on something now, so that down the road you will only need to spend 20% of your time doing it.

How does this apply in this case? Simple: use your already established platform to propel your other marketing forward.

Since I spent a majority of my marketing time building my Twitter following, now I can leverage that to build my blog following.

How to use Twitter to build your Blog

Well, duh, obviously tweet about your blog!

First of all, I want to point out, that just tweeting something doesn’t cut it.  There’s too much noise out there, especially if your followers follow a lot of people.  I get probably about 30 new tweets a second.  That’s why you have to stand out.  For me, this means an interesting line and a photo.  Photos always stand out to someone just scrolling through all their tweets.  If your photo catches their eye, then they will read your text.  If your text is interesting enough, they will click on your link.

Here’s how I use even more leverage to tweet about my blog:

I’ve researched hashtags relevant to my genre to help tweet my book.  I post all my tweets with these hashtags.  These hashtags aren’t just #amwriting or something like that.  They are a group of people dedicated to retweeting these hashtags so I get it out in front of their hundreds of thousands of followers.  MUCH MUCH more followers that my own.  This has made a huge difference in how many people read my tweets.

Finding hashtags for you will depend on several things.  I know that #IndieBooksBeSeen is always looking for Indie authors to join their ranks.  If you can’t find one for you, then create your own.  Work with your twitter friends to create a certain hashtag and then dedicate yourself to retweeting each other.  It should be noted, that if your twitter friend is a non-fiction writer about birds and you write fantasy, it might be better to find someone in the same genre as you.

Here’s how I use technology to leverage my tweets:

I am a huge fan of ManageFlitter.com.  I started using them when I wanted to more efficiently unfollow people who weren’t following back.  Then I started using their ‘Engagement’ function and I fell in love when it when I saw a direct result of their advice.

Second, they have this super cool feature called ‘power post.’  When you give them access to your twitter account, they analyze it to determine the most popular time to post.

From the blog of Nicholas C. Rossis, author of science fiction, the Pearseus epic fantasy series and children's books

For instance, in the above picture, you can see that they recommend that I post at 1pm on March 9th. This is when the most users in the United States are on Twitter.  If I click on “Add more data to timeline” (photo below), I can choose to add more data to analyze.

From the blog of Nicholas C. Rossis, author of science fiction, the Pearseus epic fantasy series and children's books

I can add people in a specific location, or I can add my specific followers (next photo).

From the blog of Nicholas C. Rossis, author of science fiction, the Pearseus epic fantasy series and children's books

Now you can see that most of my followers are on twitter at 2pm.  If you click on the right arrow, next to your graph, it will add a page.  So in this picture, I’ve added the rest of the week and you can see that Monday through Thursday are my best days, and then it tapers off on the weekend (photo below).

From the blog of Nicholas C. Rossis, author of science fiction, the Pearseus epic fantasy series and children's books

When I started posting during these times, I saw a huge increase in my engagement. For instance, one post had 35 clicks on my link, but when I posted another during the ‘power post’ time, it received 254 clicks on my tweet.  What a difference! (BTW, both of these were written by Nicholas).

And that reminds me, another thing that you can do on Manage Flitter is allow them to shorten your links.  If you allow them to do this, then they will also track how many clicks you got on your link.  Just scroll down and click on the ‘sent’ tab, and they will show you their analytics.

While you’re there, you can see that you can also schedule ‘reoccurring’ posts, which I used to use when I was running a promotion, although now I’ve switched that to Buffer.

One down side to Manage Flitter is if you use their FREE account (yes, all these things you can do for free!), then you can only schedule one post per day.  Their paid accounts start at $12 a month, and I think you can post unlimited, although check them out to make sure this is right.

I like to use ManageFlitter them over Hootsuite because I can’t tell if Hootsuite always posts my pictures, or if they post a link to my picture.  Sometimes that’s what I think they do.  Manage Flitter always posts my picture.  For me, I use them to post important stuff, and then use Hootsuite if I want to schedule any more tweets.

Bufferapp.com is also a great website to use.  They don’t give you the same information as Manage Flitter, but they have options that other websites don’t.  For instance, you can schedule more than one post a day.  Try them out and see which one works best for you.

This seems like a lot of work!

Yes, I agree, it is work.  Which… I mean, yes, you have to work on promotion.  This is taking full advantage of the 80/20 rule.  Once you get all this worked out, plan in time to get all the kinks worked out, and then it will get easier to do all this.

During this time that I’ve been putting all this together, my book has been at my editor.  And guess what, he just sent me my MS back.  I’ve gotten the hang of all this by now and can start focusing on my edits, while Manage Flitter, and Nicholas and Jesse and Tanya and Twitter will market my book for me!  Thanks guys!! 😛

Many thanks to Fleur for sharing with us her post – and for her kind words! 🙂 I’m sure you want to find out more about her and her work, so here’s some extra information.

Who is Fleur?

From the blog of Nicholas C. Rossis, author of science fiction, the Pearseus epic fantasy series and children's booksMy name is Fleur Camacho and I live life to the fullest. I like to travel, hike, read, paint, be healthy and read boring economic reports. I love the trees and greenery and I attribute that to being raised in the South (of the United States) because we have such great weather here. I believe passionately in following your dreams and taking a chance on them. I’m a decided optimist ­ life is too short not to see it any other way ­ but believe that pessimists are necessary in the world. I am the wife to an uber­cool and sexy husband and a mom to two awesome children. I feel really lucky that I’ve met so many super amazing internet friends.

My inspiration for my book series, TRISTEN, came from a conversation with my husband. One day we were talking about what super powers we would pick if we could choose one. I love to learn about new things; especially new places and history. So traveling through books would be the Ultimate Super Power for me because I could experience anything I’m curious about. This conversation led to the first paragraph in TRISTEN, where it promptly sat on a shelf for a few years, until I decided to brush off the dust and finish it.

What was that book called again?

From the blog of Nicholas C. Rossis, author of science fiction, the Pearseus epic fantasy series and children's booksTristen wakes to find a man watching him from the mirror.

A chill runs through Tristen’s body as the familiar robed priest stares at him longingly. The priest struggles to open his mouth; the stitches that lace his lips together slowly rip apart and jut raggedly from his mouth. His bloody lips stretch wide as he leans towards Tristen, trying to suck him into a deep black hole.

When Tristen, a sixteen year old teenager, is assigned to work with Ailey on a school project, his life takes an unexpected turn that changes his life forever. Tristen suddenly feels an inexorable pull towards Ailey; just being around her draws him in completely, blindly and with disastrous consequences. At the same time, an evil priest invades Tristen’s dreams and threatens to kill his mom.

Then, Tristen and his friends find themselves magically transported to Fifteenth Century France. Tristen discovers that he is the last-born Seeker – destined to save the past and the influential figures who shape it. When someone tries to kill him, Tristen must discover the truth to save his own life and the ones he loves.

Why does he feel this magnetic pull towards Ailey?

Who is this evil priest and why is he haunting Tristen?

And lastly, will he be able to embrace his destined purpose and risk loosing everything, or will he get stuck in the past running for his life forever?

Connect with Fleur

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For a few more days, you can buy TRISTEN on Amazon for only 99c!