Mega-publisher Simon & Schuster have recently relaunched their website. It has loads of interesting things for authors and readers, but what is particularly of note to me is the Author Resources section.
Under the sub-section of Online Tips and Tools, they promote the use of blogs, social media, book sites and video for authors who want to market themselves and their books. This is essentially the Author 2.0 Model where you have a central hub site with lots of ‘spokes' linking to it and bringing you people, traffic and sales from around the net.
The need for an author platform has been talked about for a few years now, but it seems the mainstream publishers are now actively encouraging it, even for established authors. I don't think the tools S&S list are well researched or easy to use, so here are some other resources you can use to get started.
I frequently get questions about how to set up a blog, how I manage this one and what people can do to get more traffic, so here are some links to resources and articles. [Many of the links are affiliate links and I stand behind all of them. I only recommend what I use myself].
- This blog is written on free WordPress software hosted on my own domain. I bought the domain at GoDaddy.com and I use Siteground (affiliate) to host my sites.
- I use Genesis Theme Beautiful Pro which is a paid theme and highly customisable. I used to use a free theme but switched after this site review and it has improved my rankings and also my subscribers.
- I set up the blog myself using the free information at BecomeABlogger.com. I have since used Joel, the BlogTechGuy to help me do techy things I just want to outsource. I do believe in paying for information from experts to improve ranking and performance.
- Podcast: Joel Williams on Blogging Basics
- Podcast: Advanced Blogging techniques with The Blogging Teacher, Paul Cunningham PLUS/ a round-up of all we discussed
- 10 Reasons Authors Need to Have a Blog
- How to set up your own blog
- Top 10 tips for effective blogging
Social Networking and Book Sites
- Writers need social media… and social media needs writers
- How to feature on the most influential sites in the world
- Social networking and book sites for authors
- Twitter overview [I really must update this post but it gives you the basics!]
- Facebook: How authors can use it for book promotion
- Podcast: Book Marketing and Promotion … Your Questions Answered
- Book trailers: 11 steps to make your own
- Top viral videos are just like great books
- Get Your Video Online – free resources and tips for making online videos from Gideon Shalwick [warning: streaming video]
- I did a whole stack of videos for NaNoWriMo – you can see them here. They certainly helped boost my twitter following and also my blog subscribers.
What else do you want to know in order to build your online platform?
Multimedia short course “Blogging for Authors and Writers” now available. Click here for more information.