In a world of niche marketing the question remains. Where do I fit in?
It seems simple enough to answer, but I’ve found it increasingly difficult to pick sides for my first release.
The Alpha’s DreamThe Alpha’s Dream is exceeding my expectations. Despite its meager written reviews, the Kindle Unlimited page reads and books purchased assures me that my work is being read. The numbers look good, better than any of my pseudonym work, and despite my previous doubts I’m confident that my audience is there. I’m proud of it. To see the work taking a life all its own and building momentum is something I’d hoped for. It is encouraging.
As I said before, just because I’ve finished writing doesn’t mean the work is done. It isn’t. The marketing is just as important a part of self-publishing as writing well. Great books die from lack of exposure. If The Alpha’s Dream is to have perpetual life, then I must ride the waves of my momentum through well chosen marketing strategies.
One method that most authors have found particularly successful is direct marketing. The way it works includes platforms like Bookbub, Booksends, Bookdaily, and other ebook to inbox services. Readers sign-up with an email address for free. They are then prompted to choose the genres they enjoy reading. Everyday, the service will then send books that are free or discounted directly to the provided email and in accordance to the genre’s selected.
For a nominal fee authors can apply for a spot on the mailing lists. Some of the platforms are simple sign-ups while others have strict requirements. Most only allow one identifying genre and they are priced accordingly.
Marketing this ways is a preferred method because of the reach of these mailing lists. The readers have chosen the service and the genres they enjoy. They aren’t spammed with unsolicited newsletters or emails about books they don’t have the slightest interest in.
The service allows maximum exposure for authors to those who enjoy our genre without us having to individually track them down or worse “hope” they find us in the book pit that is Amazon. The one on one contact is a great way to expand into the book scope of our preferred demographic and offers a surge in the possibility of gaining a fan as well as possible sales. Great, right? Brilliant to be exact.
Here is my problem, The Alpha’s Dream is an African- American Werewolf Shifter Romance. So, where is the check mark for that one? Anybody? No. Right.
So here I have these incredible platforms for services I would have to pay for and I am struggling to determine which genre would best identify my work. My audience is both African-American romance readers and Alpha Wolf Shifter (Paranormal) romance readers. Obviously there is some overlap. The struggle in picking sides doesn’t come from not realizing this. The apprehension about which to choose comes from an attempt to include my entire audience in one marketing sweep. There is an intense feeling I’m neglecting some readers in order to pursue others.
In some ways, this is an irrational fear. Ultimately, whether or not this should even be a battle I have with myself is irrelevant. One marketing campaign at a time, I must pick a side.
Choosing is never easy.
The Alpha’s Dream is just one representation of that. However, at some point we all must buck up and pick which side best explains our position. Time and time again this surfaces in my life and I assume many others. What remains true is that there will always be a point where we or what we believe is “both”. Deciding to choose “neither” will be a futile decision.
Standing still will never move you forward.
In choosing progress, I weigh my odds and embrace the strongest identity. The Alpha’s Dream is still ” both”, but for marketing purposes it is African- American romance. It has not lessened by being sorted.
In order to become what we are meant, sometimes we must make the hard choice of defining ourselves even when one answer won’t do. If that means that someone will be missed, then so be it. Maybe, it just wasn’t their time to join the fold anyway.
What are some identities you’ve had to choose between? Comment below with how things worked out.