Most of us have heard of the six degrees of separation. This is the theory that all of us are just six degrees from anyone in the world. We can thank the internet, according to a Facebook algorithm, that we are actually closer than that. The algorithm has found that most of us are actually closer to only 3.67 degrees of separation. Mark Zuckerberg has a score of 3.17, but mine is actually closer than his at 3.12. In other words, my personal connections are slightly more varied than Zuckerberg’s.
It is often said that it’s not what you know that counts, but who you know. This is good news because this information from Facebook lets us know that finding the right people to help us with our marketing is closer than we think. We just have to do our networking to find those people who can help or who can help connect us to our target market.
The Fiction Market VS Nonfiction Market
Lately I have been re-reading a book by Kristen Lamb called The Rise of the Machine.(here’s one of her latest posts https://warriorwriters.wordpress.com/2016/02/18/making-money-in-a-world-addicted-to-free-what-do-writers-do/#comment-233193 ) In this book, one of the important messages that she gives is that book of fiction cannot be marketed in the same way that nonfiction and other marketing is done. In nonfiction or other types of marketing, the idea is do develop a niche and write for that specific group of people. With a novel. however, according to Lamb, the goal is to get as many people who are not avid readers to read the book as possible. To put it simply, the way we do that is to find and nurture fans who in turn talk about your book on social media making the book go viral.
I personally have seen the difference between how I gain readers for my nonfiction books and how I gain readers for my novels. My gardening book-Simply Vegetable Gardening— for example is easy to sell using traditional marketing strategies. I go to where the gardeners are. I write an online article and connect it to my Amazon account with the book on it and I can sell. I can take my books to privately owned garden centers and animal feed stores, and health food stores and sell wholesale. I go to prepper and sustainability as well as local festivals and sell my gardening books. fiction books are different. The traditional methods do not work as well. The connections with fiction run deeper than with nonfiction books. Word of mouth sells novels in ways that traditional marketing cannot. Developing personal connections on social media leads to more fiction book sales than all the marketing in the world.
Writers are not my market for my fiction because writers don’t have time to read a lot of fiction books (aspiring writers, maybe, writers, not so much). Avid readers are people who will buy my book, but they are limited in number. The people that I need to reach are the people who want to read my book because they love the story and they love me as a writer. That’s one of the reasons that I started the newsletter was so that I could further connect with my friends on Facebook and Twitter and position myself as an author who cares about the people who read my work. The people who sign up for my newsletter are the people that love my work the most and don’t want to miss out on my next book. These are the ones I give special offers to first because they are my friends. They are also the first ones with access to my latest book and they are the ones who find out first where my next event will be so that they can get an autographed copy of a novel of someone that they know. (Just because someone read an e-book copy does not mean that this same person wouldn’t want an autographed copy of the same book.)
The process is simple, really. It is the same as in the real world. I interact with people on the internet and they become my friends. Because they know that I am a writer and I share some content with them, these people become my friends. My friends from Facebook and twitter who are reading my novel series are likely to be the ones who tell their friends who tell there friends until one day, because (thanks to the internet) the degrees of separation have diminished and my book series goes viral.
Donna Brown is pastor at Faith in God Church 1 1/2 miles south of Brandsville, Missouri on Hwy 63. Sunday services are at 10 am and Wednesday night Bible Study at 6:30 pm. As Author Cygnet Brown, she has recently published her first nonfiction book: Simply Vegetable Gardening: Simple Organic Gardening Tips for the Beginning Gardener
She is also the author of historical fiction series The Locket Saga. which includes When God Turned His Head and Soldiers Don’t Cry, the Locket Saga Continues, and most recently, A Coward’s Solace, Book III of the Locket Saga