Writing For Money: The Reason You’re Not Selling

Writing For Money: The Reason You’re Not Selling

This is a “writing for money” blog post, which I’d normally post to the Fab Freelance Writing Blog. But this post isn’t just for people who get hired to write, it’s for anyone who’s selling online. So, if fits better here because it’s broadly applicable.

It’s also the single biggest mistake I see companies making with content marketing. Not to mention authors. (Scroll down, if you want to know how to sell more books.)

You’re not selling because….

You’re looking in the wrong direction

Everyone wants traffic, and that’s the big reason you’re not making sales online. Whether you’re selling ebooks, self-help courses, or widgets, content marketing is just marketing.

The goal of marketing is sales. Ditto content marketing.

Your goal is never traffic. I discovered the perils of striving for traffic years ago. Did I learn my lesson? No way. I had to learn it over and over again. Traffic doesn’t help you to sell anything.

Stop looking at your website stats. Start looking at your sales.

Not making any sales? Then your content marketing isn’t working.

You need more content: content that’s focused on your customers, and this content may well be boring.

Josh Haynam describes the benefits of boring content in making sales in an excellent post on Hubspot. Trying for viral posts didn’t make sales:

“Then one day, out of sheer exasperation, I tried a different approach. Instead of just trying to get hits I decided to answer a real question that a real potential customer had asked me.”

Now let’s look at how to sell books — one tip, however. Don’t be boring — that’s the one thing you must remember as an author. Never, ever, be boring.:-)

How to sell more books: book marketing secrets

A couple of students asked me how content marketing — writing for money — works with book marketing.

That’s simple: write more books.

Let’s say you’ve written seven ebooks — fiction, or nonfiction, it doesn’t matter. You’re making sales, but your sales aren’t growing. You took a break from writing a few months ago, and haven’t been publishing. Your sales have pretty much flat-lined.

You’ve considered spending money on advertising. You’re blogging, and using social media.

Sales? Crickets.

To repeat: write more books.

Publish more. You don’t need to write more novels, if you’re writing fiction, or lengthy works of nonfiction. Write short material. Authors have had great results from the strategies we cover in Story Power, and from Sell Kindle Ebooks. Basically — write short material, and publish it.

Writing fiction? This post, 4 Easy Writing Tips To Turn Short Stories Into Kindle Cash, will help.

Yes, it’s content marketing. Your ebooks are content. Create more content to sell. With ebooks, a consensus seems to be that it takes authors (who don’t have a backlist of titles to which they have the rights back) around 30 titles to make “good” sales. You may need more than 30 titles to be happy with your sales. Kindle Unlimited helps. You get paid for each ebook of which 10% or more is read.

And of course, by publishing more and publishing regularly, you’re taking advantage of Amazon’s “new releases” list, which attracts readers for you.

So, whatever you’re selling, remember that your goal isn’t traffic.

If you’re Kindle publishing, stop the social media frenzy. Write more — create more salable content — that is, ebooks, and let Amazon sell them for you. Currently, that’s the way you sell more.

“What have you written today?”

A final tip: writing for money means writing. A lot. If something isn’t working, ask yourself the question I ask my students: “what have you written today?”

Sell Kindle Ebooks: Write Bestselling Genre Fiction & Nonfiction FAST

Sell Kindle Ebooks: Write Bestselling Genre Fiction & Nonfiction FAST

Sell Kindle Ebooks is a comprehensive self-publishing program which helps you to make the most of your talents. Take advantage of the power of Amazon to write both genre fiction, AND nonfiction. It’s time to develop a publishing program, and tell your day job goodbye.

You receive everything you need to become a publisher of both fiction and nonfiction.

, on Twitter: @angee, and find Angela on Pinterest, too.

How to profit from your writing: online store.

Content Ideas: Easy Types Of Content

Content Ideas: Easy Types Of Content
At least once a week, a client complains that they’re all out of content ideas. I created a quick mind map of easy types of content for them. The map usually sparks lots of fresh ideas, and inspiration. They realize that they have content which can be repurposed.

You have more content than you think you do

Often, all unknowing, a client has a mass of content that’s able to be repurposed. Product manuals, for example. Yes, I know that sounds dry and horrid, but if you’ve ever searched online for a product manual for a stove or a washer, you know that generally all you’ll find is a bunch of scraper websites. (Why Google allows this kind of junk is beyond me. It’s beyond frustrating to wade through this rubbish, deeper and deeper down rabbit holes of more and more scraper websites.)

Where there are scraper websites, there’s interest. The scrapers only use keywords for which people are actively searching. People search for product manuals every day. So, if you’re in a business which has product manuals dig them out and post them. Don’t forget older products which are a few years old. Create a special section on your blog called “manuals” and post away. Scraper sites will hate you. :-)

Advertising is content too

You’ve paid an agency for marketing collateral, or the manufacturer or distributor of a product has provided you with promotional materials. That’s all fine. However, there’s no law which says you can’t create your own materials.

Recently I was working with a client and asked him whether he used his own product. He gushed that his wife loved it (it was an appliance), and it saved so much time, and was so easy to use, and so on and so forth.

“Why isn’t that on your website?” I asked.

He could easily have posted everything he told me onto his website, but he didn’t think of it. If you love and use what you sell, why wouldn’t you talk about it? Ask your customers for their experiences too. Post them.

Closeouts: check out the bargains to help you to write more, and sell more

Writing programs to increase your profits, from today -- closeouts mean you SAVE

To meet my goals for 2015, I’m closing out some of our bestselling programs, so that I can focus on coaching and publishing. This means that you get special offerings on some of our current programs. When they close, they’ll close for good. And yes, you receive coaching with them too. :-) Enjoy.

, on Twitter: @angee, and find Angela on Pinterest, too.

How to profit from your writing: online store.

For Writers: Closeouts On Bestselling Programs

For Writers: Closeouts On Bestselling Programs

Over the next few weeks, we’ll have some great deals for writers, as I mentioned on the freelance writing blog:

Family problems have meant that my writing time is limited — and I suddenly realized HOW MUCH I was doing. With my time so limited, I need to cut down on my projects, so I can meet my writing goals for 2015.

Going forward, I’ll be concentrating on personal coaching, and on publishing. This means that many of our bestselling programs are closing. This is good news for you, if you’re looking to build your skills, and increase your income.

I’ve set up a page for closeout deals, so keep an eye on that.

Our first closeout deal is for The Professional Writers’ Pitch Book.

A reader asked whether I was still blogging… of course I am. After 16 years, it’s even more fun than it was when I started out. :-)

, on Twitter: @angee, and find Angela on Pinterest, too.

How to profit from your writing: online store.

5 Blogging Tips To Help You To Love Your Blog

5 Blogging Tips To Help You To Love Your Blog

A few days ago, one of my students said that she was giving up her blog — it was taking too much time, for too little return. Many more people give up their blogs than commit to them for the long term, so maybe you feel the same way. If you do, here are some blogging tips to help you to fall in love with your blog, perhaps for the first time.

Before we get started, think about your reasons for blogging. WHY are you blogging? Maybe you want to become a full-time blogger, or you’re marketing your business, or a book.

Grab a notebook, or open a new computer file, and write three paragraphs about why you’re blogging. Start with: “I’m blogging because…”

Here’s a secret. When I started blogging some 16 years ago, I had no clue why I was doing it. It seem stupid… but my intuition kept nudging me to blog. I tried to ignore the impulse. I couldn’t. It kept coming back.

Finally I was exasperated. I wrote a list of “why blogging?” thoughts in my journal. It boiled down to: “Because I love writing and it’ll be fun.” Silly ideas, since writing is the way I make a living, and I should have spent the time wooing magazine editors, or writing a book proposal. (That was long before Amazon launched the Kindle, so you sold books by writing proposals and sent them to editors and agents.)

My point: you may not be able to articulate your ideas about blogging any better than I could. Maybe you just feel that blogging is for you. Go with your feelings. Blogging’s done more for me than I could ever have imagined, so trust yourself.

These tips will help you to love your blog.

1. Spend time on your blog…. read your posts

Remember what it felt like to be in love? You wanted to spend all your time with the person you love. Perhaps you once felt like that about your blog.

Whether you did or not, commit to spending ten minutes a day with your blog. You don’t have to write anything, or do anything. Just read over the material you have. Imagine yourself a year from now. You have many more blog posts, and loyal readers who visit your blog.

When you spend time with your blog, and think about your dreams, you’re giving yourself a chance to fall in love.

2. Talk positively about your blog: share your hopes and dreams for it

Abraham Lincoln supposedly said: “folks are usually about as happy as they make up their minds to be.”

Whoever said it, it’s true. You decide how you’ll feel. If you talk lovingly about something, you’ll feel positive towards it. Similarly, if you denigrate something, you will start to dislike it.

This has nothing to do with positive thinking. It has everything to do with how your mind and body work.

Talk positively about your blog. Find bloggers who love blogging, and talk to them. Their ideas and positive emotions will inspire you.

3. Make a list of blogging adventures you can try

There are no rules for blogging. No one forces you to blog their way. You can blog any way you choose. Think about things which sound like fun. Maybe you can snap an image a day, and post that.

Tumblr blogging

If you’re blogging on Tumblr, you can choose the kind of post you want to create from your dashboard. It’s a handy reminder that you don’t need to write 1,000 words — you can just post a link, a quote, or an image.

Neil Patel, in How to Generate $100,000 a Month from a Brand New Blog, is on an adventure:

“… you told me you wanted me to create a new company in a space that I had no ties to. So I’m now starting a nutrition blog.

“The official start date will be April 1, 2015. And within 12 months, I have to get the blog to generate $100,000 in monthly revenue.”

Brave, right? Yes, but also clever. Neil will become inspired, because he’s trying something new, and inspiring himself, as well as his readers.

Make your list, then choose your own blogging adventure.

4. Dress up your blog: change your blog’s look and feel

No matter which platform you’re blogging on, you can change the look of your blog with a few clicks. Over the years, I’ve tried all the popular blogging platforms, and I found that when a blog started to bore me, I could get inspired when I changed the blog’s look.

Try it. Choose a new theme for your blog. Create some images, or pay someone to create them for you.

5. Interview people who love blogging to get new ideas

Make a list of bloggers who blog in your area. Interview them, either live, or via email. Post the interviews on your blog.

Their enthusiasm will be catching. Too often, when we lose heart in blogging, we spend time thinking about how disheartening blogging is. We talk to others who validate our feelings.

Change that. Talk to people who LOVE blogging, and it will rekindle your own passion for your blog.

So, there you have it. Five tips to help you to love your blog. Put them into action, starting today.

Free blogging report: “Quit Your Day Job And Follow Your Dreams — 28 Hot Blogging Tips To Make It Happen”

Want to fall in love with blogging? Download your free report now.

, on Twitter: @angee, and find Angela on Pinterest, too.

How to profit from your writing: online store.