The other day I found myself unsubscribing to dozens of email message peddlers. Gone went nearly daily emails from Best Buy, Staples, Lord & Taylor, and seemingly every store I’ve shopped at in the past decade. Gone went emails from those I never read, or use, like Groupon, MLB.com, Stock Photo, and Book Baby. It was long overdue as I almost never unsubscribe. I just delete, delete, delete but the constant barrage of solicitations has gotten to be overwhelming. There’s a lesson in all of this for book publishers and authors. What will you to do get people to subscribe to a blog, newsletter, or email -- and what will lead them to opt out?
The major reasons people will subscribe are they:
1. They Perceive value will come from it.
2. Like the voice or brand that’s represented.
3. Did so in order to take advantage of a discount or special offer.
4. Want to monitor your messages.
5. Think it’s more convenient than to have to sign in to your blog or click on your website for updates.
But there are many, many more reasons why people will unsubscribe, including these:
1. They simply found someone more interesting in your space to follow.
2. You failed to deliver what was promised or what they expected.
3. You offended them with your views, language, or content.
4. You gave incorrect information.
5. You gave lousy advice or made a poor recommendation.
6. You went off of your message, perhaps delving into sensitive areas – religion, politics, sex, ethics.
7. Your information seems old, boring, or flat.
8. You send them too much stuff, too often.
9. You became repetitive and uninteresting.
10. People are fickle and they experiment – no rhyme or reason.
So what can you do to win people over – and retain them? Follow the do’s and don’ts. Keep your content fresh and diverse but make sure it fills the original needs that drew people to you. Don’t take them for granted – treasure your readers and connections.
Don’t use your blog as a bully pulpit for unrelated matters – romance novelists talking about gun control or business authors discussing the police shooting black people who are unarmed would not make sense. If you write parenting books, no one needs to read how you like sex and health authors have no business writing about Trump’s economic policies.
Be in tune with who reads your stuff and what keeps them coming back for more. Survey and reward them. Value their support and express your appreciation. Most of all, deliver quality, targeted content on a regular but not too frequent basis, and think like your reader. What’s going on in his or her mind? What are their needs or desires? Provide answers to their questions and they’ll come back for more.
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Brian Feinblum’s views, opinions, and ideas expressed in this blog are his alone and not that of his employer. You can follow him on Twitter @theprexpert and email him at firstname.lastname@example.org. He feels more important when discussed in the third-person. This is copyrighted by BookMarketingBuzzBlog 2017©. Born and raised in Brooklyn, now resides in Westchester. Named one of the best book marketing blogs by Book Baby http://blog.bookbaby.com/2013/09/the-best-book-marketing-blogs
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