As an author, I'm constantly looking for the most effective ways to promote my book - like all writers. I have my own blog and I belong to several online sites for writers and readers. I contribute regularly to those sites.

I've been doing some investigating lately and I discovered that, although I've posted several blogs on many of those sites, I seldom get any comments. For example, I have 13  posts on my Crimespace blog and only 2 comments total. Is blogging on these sites a waste of time? What are your thoughts?

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I.J.,

Thanks for your comments.

I do have my own blog site and I'm thrilled with my following. I post articles for writers and readers of mystery/suspense novels and I do a lot of author interviews to help promote other writers. It's my way of paying it back and, in many cases, paying it forward.

As to posting blogs on other social networks - that doesn't seem to be worth my time right now. I've got a second book to edit and I need to focus on that. :)

I'm not sure how this "blog" thing workes either.  I've tried getting my own blog going but gave up after a while.  Much to complicated for my limited PC/Internet knowledge.  Maybe I must give it another go.

If the only blogs posted are promotional, then i doubt they'll get a lot of traffic. The blogs i read came to my attention either because i was aware of the author from Forum discussions, or the content of the blog post seemed interesting. Everyone is busy. There has to be a reason to read marketing material other than because it's there. At least for me, my interest has to have been piqued ahead of time.

Agreed.  I think we as writers also tend to gravitate towards other writers, their blogs and sites and tweets.  But we need to reach further, to readers.  It does seem like a maelstrom of confusion, I'm embarking on that process myself and I barely know which way to turn.

It's a long and winding road, Mark. But, well worth it!

What Dana said. You have to be interesting on your own before anyone will take a chance on buying your stuff.

Well, Benjamin, I certainly hope I am interesting on my own.

This isn't about anyone "buying my stuff." It's about whether or not it's productive to post on social media site blogs.

Just to be clear, Dana, for the most part, my blog posts on Crimespace haven't been strictly promotional. I've written posts on subjects that I hope are of interest to writers and readers.

You make a good point: everyone is busy and that is probably a big part of why I haven't gotten positive results on my blog posts on this and a few other social media sites.

As a Dutch woman, English is my second language. I sincerely hope it is good enough to transfer my thoughts to you ;)

 

I am not sure if it is a complete waste of time. However, I do think most people, especially non-famous writers/photographers/painters etc., join sites for promotion purposes but do not find the time to read, let alone respond to, other people's messages and blogs. I guess you better watch the number of views to measure the success of your activity.

Mary,

You're exactly right. It's probably not a complete waste of time but, not only is there a lack of comments, there's a lack of views on the sites I'm talking about. Probably time is better spent on other pursuits, for the most part.

Now, having written that, I need to add that I have my own blog, my writers forum, and I have a nice following on that site. I'm certainly not against blogging; I simply want to do it in the right place/s.

Trying to market your mystery novel to other mystery novelists definitely seems like a waste of time. I don't mean to sound flip, but are you buying all our books? In the four years I've been on CrimeSpace, two or three people here have bought one of my books. 

Writers think they understand promotion but marketing and advertising are professional skills that require much knowledge and practice. No matter how much they like the sound or look of it, not one in 100 people will buy your book upon seeing the cover, a description, and a place to click on for purchase. You have to bombard people with images and opportunities over and over again -- I've heard everything from 5 to 9 times, preferably on multiple outlets. 

It is also true that no one will ever buy your book if they don't hear about it. Reviews worked for me, although online stuff was the best I could do. Have you tried getting online reviews? I worked hard at the promotion thing for three years but finally decided the best advice came from CrimeSpace's own I J Parker -- spend your time writing the best damn book you can write.

Jack,

In this case, I'm not talking about people buying my books. Although, I'd have no problem with you doing that. :) I'm talking about people reading other writers' blogs and commenting on them on social media sites such as Crimespace. Just wondered what everyone thought and now I know. Thanks.

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