As my book, Daring to Date Again, zooms up and down the amazon charts, my writer friends have been sharing their experiences — where they sold books, to whom, under what circumstances, and on and on. They are gauging success by numbers sold.
I am crossing my fingers that I will be able to count on the most powerful marketing tool of all, word-of-mouth. If people enjoy it, they will tell others, and no number of appearances on chic tv shows will change the momentum that personal recommendations generate. Hillary Clinton’s book, for example, has been widely bought but not widely read. People more familiar with a thousand and one media sites have been pushing me to get before the the high volume bloggers, and on shows like The View or Good Morning America the and so on. I have no idea how people are chosen to be on these shows and so far would not be asked (after all, the book hasn’t even passed its publication date). I’m not sweating that. If a lot of people read the book and enjoy it, I’ll find my way to those fancy places. The people who are advising me this way give me a disdainful look, “Do you want to do it your way or do you want to sell books?” was the most recent comment, last night, implying that I have not kept up with the times. I must be over the hill if I think that person-to-person communication is the best sales tool. Right?
Writing is a business like any other, and I will be thrilled if I sell a lot books, but I’ll be even more thrilled if many people have read it. I don’t want to depend on the smartypants way; it is so often flash-in-the-pan. I’d rather build my audience one by one. If you liked it and told somebody about it, maybe wrote a review on amazon or goodreads, thanks. That’s the old-fashioned way. One person told me she had bought three extra books to send to friends who are thinking of dating again. Now THAT’S marketing.