Marketing is the most important aspect of business. It is what connects business owners with potential customers and PR professionals. The level of marketing skills determines the profit a business owner and/or entrepreneur will make.
However, when do you begin the marketing and promotion of your project? Do you begin once your plans have been completed, when you are half-way to the finish line or once your project has been completed? These questions have plagued my mind since the release of my first novel, Day of Revenge. When writing Day of Revenge, I didn’t think to build buzz for this story. I didn’t even think to do so when I was in the editing process. At that time, I maintained the belief that you don’t market your book until it has been released, copyrighted and so forth. I was actually given that advice and I went with it. Immediately after the release of my book I realized how wrong that advice was. I did manage to secure a stellar review from Publishers Weekly and landed several interviews on internet radio shows, but am still seeking new and inexpensive ways to market my book abroad.
As a new author, the marketing realm is completely new to me. I have never taken any courses in marketing and promotion. However, I have learnt an important lesson through this experience and am determined to not make the same mistake with my new book, To be Maria.
Marketing is not only crucial to an author’s success, though. It is important to any business owner’s success. You have to build buzz for your product the moment you start work on it. Now, there is a difference between ‘exposure’ and ‘giving it all away’. When you market your product, that does not mean you give it away before it is on the market. There are ways you can market your product before it is complete and without giving it all away.
1. Determine who your buyers are. As an aspiring author, business owner or entrepreneur, you need to know who is going to purchase your product. What age demographic does your potential customer base fall under? Is your product targeted for females, males or both? These are the things you need to know before you begin the marketing of your product.
2. Seek out feedback from potential customers. Whether you have written a book or have created an organic hand lotion, it is important that you seek out feedback from your target customers before you put your product on the market. Feedback will determine whether you are ready to launch your new product or if you must revisit the drawing board to make improvements. If you receive stellar reviews from potential customers, record them in a journal because you will need them later on.
3. Start a website and/or blog. The world needs to know about your great product, so you need some kind of platform for which people can find you. That is where a website and/or blog comes in handy. You can post information about yourself and your product on a regular basis without being too pushy. On your website, it is important to have images because that way, when people find you, they get a good idea of what your product looks like. It is also important that you include your price rate–if that has been set–and all of those good reviews that you recorded in your journal earlier on.
4. Guest post on other blogs. Guest blogging is a great way to gain exposure and to drive traffic to your website or blog. It is also a great way to hone your writing skills. If you are writing a book, you can choose themes from your book and write articles based on those themes. If you’re the creator of various organic hand creams, you can write articles based on the benefits of using organic hand cream, how they compare with other hand creams and/or similar hand creams that are already on the market. When you write about your product, it is important that you’re not over-promotional because that will harm your future sales. People do not like braggarts.
Marketing is hard work indeed. When you are starting out in the world of business, you must make it a full-time job and you cannot rely on anyone else to market your product for you. Major investors and retailers will not look at you unless you have accrued a decent profit from the sales of your product. So that is why you should never wait until you have completed your project to begin the marketing. Begin now while you are still creating your masterpiece.
Written by Deanna Proach
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