Today I want to welcome Narelle Atkins to this blog. I have asked her to tell us how a book alliance can benefit us all.
Narelle: The digital age of publishing has provided new opportunities for authors to publish their books. No longer constrained by limited shelf space, online booksellers have the ability to list an ever expanding number of books, both print and electronic, in their online catalogues.
Readers can visit their local book stores and browse the shelves, looking for their favorite authors or a new author to read. They can purchase online and are encouraged by book sellers eg. Amazon, to post online book reviews. They can join groups eg. Goodreads, or The Book Club Network, and share information about books online with other book lovers. Online and in-person book clubs provide more opportunities for readers to discover new authors.
The increasing range of available books is good news for readers. The challenge for authors and publishers is how to make their books stand out in the marketplace. What marketing and promotion strategies can they utilize to reach the target audience for their books?
Authors and publishers provide free review copies of new releases to help promote their books. Reviewers can sign up with publishers to receive advance reader copies of upcoming releases. Authors often have ‘Influencers’ who receive a review copy of their book on the understanding they will help promote their book in a positive way.
Word of mouth is a powerful marketing tool. We tend to listen to our friends when they talk about books they like and dislike. Their opinions can sway our book purchasing decisions.
A blog alliance is another way authors and publishers can promote their books.
Bloggers who are interested in reviewing books can join a blog alliance. Depending on the rules of the blog alliance and their geographic location, blog alliance members can request books to review in either print or electronic format. Blog alliance members choose the books they are interested in reviewing, and post a review on their personal blog during the book tour week.
Last year I co-founded the Australian Christian Readers Blog Alliance with avid reader Jenny Blake. We tour fiction, non-fiction and children’s books, and we welcome international members. We are looking forward to touring Shirley Corder’s non-fiction book, Strength Renewed, on April 15th – 19th.
Readers now play a bigger role in spreading the word about books. They have opportunities to receive free books in exchange for sharing their opinions online. They have the ability to tell the world about their favorite authors and books they love. I encourage readers to consider how they can become involved in the exciting new world of book marketing and promotion.
Shirley, thank you for hosting me on your blog today.
NARELLE ATKINS writes contemporary inspirational romance and lives in Canberra, Australia. She recently sold her debut novel, set in Australia, to Harlequin’s Heartsong Presents line in a six-book contract. Her first book, Running to Love, will be a February 2014 release.
She has published Bible Studies on Smashwords and blogs regularly at http://30MinuteBibleStudies.wordpress.com