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.

Write Kindle Romances: Special Offering

Kindle romances

Kindle romances are hot. Want to try your hand at them?

As I said here:

To sell ebooks, write what’s selling

Romance sells. Readers gobble it up in many different flavors: straight romance (contemporary or historical), erotica, paranormal romance (which includes sub-genres like vampire romance), young adult, and the HOT new flavor, new adult (just out of college)…

Romance is the hottest selling genre in fiction. You can make an unbelievable amount of money if you’re hard-working, and lucky enough to hit a nerve with readers.

We’re having lots of fun with our Hot, Hotter, Hottest: Write Bestselling Kindle Romances writing class. We ran an offering for the class when it was launched, but people missed it. So, in response to many requests, here’s the offering again.

Join us, we’d love to have you. Details here.

Write novels, novellas or short stories, your choice.

We cover writing at any length in class, so you don’t have to write full novels. It’s a great idea to start with short stories if you’re new to writing fiction. If you’re already writing at novel length, consider writing some short stories, they help with promotion.

Speaking of promotion, I know that many authors freak out about it. As I said in Writing Romance Fiction For Fast Promotions and Sales:

There are endless ways to promote your ebooks. The simplest way: don’t bother. Create a mailing list on aweber or similar, and include a little note in the back matter of your ebooks, telling readers how to subscribe, and leave it at that.

See you in class. :-)

, and on Twitter: @angee.

You can find Angela on Pinterest, too.

Writing Fiction: You’re a Publisher Now

Writing Fiction: You're a Publisher Now

You’re writing fiction. Start thinking of yourself as a publisher, rather than as an author. Fiction is big business: prepare for success.

Labels are important. I’ve just written about the “copywriting” label on my freelance blog to make that point. If you’re writing fiction now, unless you opt for the traditional publishing route, you’re a publisher.

The “self publisher” label terrifies some writers. It shouldn’t. Believe me, if you ever experience traditional publishing, you’ll more than happy to go it alone. So accept the “self publisher” or “indie” label, and wear it with pride.

Writing, and Publishing: Create and Promote.

Here’s how self publishing works.

  • You write something;
  • You upload it to Amazon;
  • Done.

Does it sound simple? That’s because it is. There are endless misconceptions about self publishing – such as, it costs thousands. It doesn’t. Self publishing is free.

Another misconception: you need to market your books yourself, if you’re a self publisher. If you’re traditionally published, your publisher does it for you. That’s a myth. Whichever form of publishing you choose, YOU DO IT, no one else.

So, you’ve written, and you’ve published. Now it’s time to promote.

“Create and promote” is one of my favorite mantras which I share with writers constantly. Promotion is simple if you’re a self publisher – two words: publish more. The larger your publishing catalog on Amazon, the more Amazon will help you by promoting your books for you in its “Recently Published” and “Also Bought” categories.

Create a Publishing Schedule.

Create a publishing schedule. Decide what you’ll publish, and when. You may not keep strictly to your schedule, because life gets in the way. However, having a schedule will help you to treat writing fiction as a business, rather than as a hobby.

Watch what other self publishing writers do. Currently there’s a mania for bundles on Amazon, because bundles sell. If you’re just starting your business, you won’t have the material for a bundle. Consider writing four short stories, selling them individually, and then compile them into a bundle. You’ve now got five ebooks in your publishing catalog.

Everything you publish promotes everything else. If you want to do additional promotions, you can. Create a blog and a Facebook page, so that you can add your readers to a mailing list. There are endless things you could do to promote your fiction. Things will fall into place for you when you start thinking of yourself as a publisher.

Make the Switch to Fiction With our Complete Fiction Writing Package

Storytellers' Bonanza - Write Novels And Short Stories FAST

Two of my most popular fiction writing programs have now been combined into one package. (They’re still available separately.)

If you haven’t tried your hand at fiction, you’ll love this. New writers have been asking me for a special deal on the two programs, because they want a complete grounding in fiction.

So here you go: Storytellers’ Bonanza – Write Novels And Short Stories FAST – Complete Fiction Writing Package.

, and on Twitter: @angee.

You can find Angela on Pinterest, too.

Write Novels And Short Stories FAST

Storytellers’ Bonanza – Write Novels And Short Stories FAST

I’ve had questions about our new program, Storytellers’ Bonanza – Write Novels And Short Stories FAST – Complete Fiction Writing Package from people who write as a hobby, and would like to self publish.

The gist of the questions: can you really write a novel in 30 days? Yes, you definitely can. Fiction Frenzy: Write Your Novel in 30 Days, which is part of our Storytellers’ Bonanza package gives you day by day instructions.

You Can Write Fast, Because You Have a Deadline.

The beauty of the “30 day” novel writing process is the deadline. Thousands of NaNoWriMo novelists write a novel in 30 days every year. In 2013, half a million people took part. You don’t have to wait until National Novel Writing Month next November however, you can do it in the next 30 days.

Remember, you don’t have to write 300-page novels. You don’t have to write a novel at all. You can write short stories, or novellas, at any length you choose. Short stories in some genres, like erotic romance and mysteries, sell very well indeed. Readers love short pieces they can read on the train on the way to work, or at bedtime.

One of my students made a commitment to write TWO erotic novels for the Kindle every month. When we last chatted, she had EIGHT novels on Amazon, under a couple of pseudonyms. She’s well on her way to making a very nice income.

That’s the benefit of putting your novels onto Amazon. Write one, write as many as you like. Your novels can be bought this month, next year… forever. They provide you with a passive income stream, and the more you write and develop a readership, the more you sell.

Storytellers’ Bonanza is a comprehensive package which helps you to write fiction, and self publish it. If you’re writing as a hobby, as most of the NaNoWriMo participants are, you can turn it into a career. Coaching is included with the program, so you can get the help you need.

, and on Twitter: @angee.

You can find Angela on Pinterest, too.