One of the biggest problems with a lot of first novels (I mean the unpublished variety) is a lack of overall plot. Sure, lots of stuff happens and we can make a laundry list of "actions". But by the time you get to the end, you aren't really sure what the book was about.
|Where's the Plot?|
The same thing can often be said of first time marketers. Oh, there's stuff happening. Social media is in effect and there is certainly "action". Usually enough to keep you distracted from writing the next book. But in the end, there isn't a sense of any big picture plan.
Marketing is overwhelming. Authors don't suffer from not having any ideas on how to market. The problem is deciding which of the eleventy billion ideas to pick.
Firepole Marketing wrote this great post recently on how to decide where to focus your marketing efforts. The article isn't geared toward authors, but much of the ideas can be applied. They suggest a series of steps to pick one tactic to focus on for the next six months. One game plan, one big picture.
I don't agree with the six month time frame for authors. As slow as publishing tends to run, in six months your book can launch and fall into oblivion. But the same principle can be applied to a week.
I can get behind a single focus. Let's be honest, if you're trying to launch a blog tour, host a live twitter chat, create a trailer and send out press releases all in the same week, a ball is getting dropped somewhere.
Each week in our Marketing Challenge will have a separate focus as well. The idea is to have small, manageable daily tasks that get your closer to the end goal of tons of readers without looking like an ant hill under attack. Sometimes slow and steady does win the race.