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Key to Marketing Your Book – Creativity

I’m asked all the time by aspiring authors: “How do you create a best seller?” The first thing that comes out of my mouth is CREATIVE PASSION. You have to be sold on your book idea and be relentless. You have to sleep, eat and drink book marketing materials. You have to be creative – and be willing to be a little wacky to get the attention in this overly-distracted world. I’m a book coach – and I’ve coached more than 200 authors over the course of 20 years – and only a hand full are willing to do what is required and only a few are willing to stay committed to their creative passion. Writing a book is like a getting married – it’s a commitment for a LIFETIME. If you want to be a best-selling author, you need to sacrifice time, money and brain power on a regular basis.  If you only dream about it – and never act up on it… your dream becomes a nightmare. And who wants nightmares? 

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Have you have heard of the expression “think outside the box” – a metaphor that means to think differently, unconventionally, or from a new perspective? I ask “What if there was no box?” In marketing your book you are only as limited as you limit yourself. The stream of creative ways to promote your book can be truly endless. However, creative energy requires priming the pump to get the well going. That well is inside you. Your well gets fed by working with multiple sources like your reading, your contacts, your inspiration, and your social networks.

pam perry If you dream of becoming a creative entrepreneur you’ll want to start investing in one specific area: yourself. Since your creative energy can be likened to a business’s capital, you need to maximize it, feed it, nurture it, and connect with those who stimulate it. Aside from regularly flexing your creative marketing muscle through practice, effort, and exercise, there are a number of other things you can do to stay creative and keep your ideas, your process, and your productivity working in your favor.

  1. Read, read, read, read you’re a mélange of what you let into your life, so read deeply and widely inside and outside of your own area of specialization. Read your competitor’s blogs to know what their marketing efforts are, read their books to know your similarities and differences. Read newspapers and magazines to see who is writing about what, and what the current topics are.
  2. Keep a swipe file. Have a notebook or a scrapbook in which you can copy down new contacts, good ideas and random thoughts you have as you engage with the world. Keep it nearby at all times and consult it often.
  3. Engage with your friends and contacts. Get out and socialize with people who lift you up, and support what you are doing. While you are chatting with a friend you might hear something in the conversation that will inspire a new angle to your marketing efforts. Or listening to what your friends are talking about might inspire a way to ride a new trend.
  4. Find inspiration or wonder daily: What do you do to rejuvenate? Do you meditate? Maybe you play racquetball? Or do you become refreshed by a walk with your dogs? Where do you go to find inspiration? Sit quietly in a park? Or drink a latte in a busy café? When we create daily activities that first suit our personalities then rejuvenate and inspire creativity will always find us.
  5. Share something small every day. Offer your thoughts, your inspiration, or create a discussion every day that would be useful or interesting to the people in your social networks, as well as those you’re trying to reach. Little daily bits of effort add up into something big over time. Blogs need not be lengthy they can be just a paragraph or two.

Further to this, you’ll want to invest in your creative marketing efforts in a range of ways. Try setting aside time each and every day to focus on your project, even if nothing flows particularly well. Waiting for inspiration to strike can be a big energy drain.

Most big ideas come from loads of small ideas accumulated over time as you’re marketing, or even thinking about creating your marketing next steps. Take your daily creative routine as seriously as you would your real job. Show up on time. You know you will always do your best. And remember to have some fun.

Mari Selby is a contributing writer for San Francisco Book Review. For the past 16 years Mari has been the director of Selby Ink, a publicity and marketing firm. http://www.selbyink.com Selby ink promotes authors who make a difference, and helps those authors to develop name recognition through traditional publicity efforts as well as social media. Selby ink specializes in the following genres: body-mind-spirit, relationships, environmental issues, and social justice.

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