Last week, I had the privilege of attending a webinar hosted by Jeff Goins and Danny Iny. The webinar was titled, “Passionate, Purposeful, and Prosperous… This Year!” and Danny Iny of Firepole Marketing spoke on a number of topics related to platform building and growing an audience. So of course, I came out of the webinar with many thoughts on how to grow my audience and provide something of value to readers.
As an independent author, I’ve found that writing a book is not an arduous task at all when compared to finding an audience who is engaged with what you’re writing about. In the webinar, I realized that I wasn’t providing enough value to the audience I’m trying to reach. Up until this point, my vision of writing success has been narrow and focused on sales of my book, which is short-sighted to say the least. Goins and Iny have both said that making lots of money is not their end goal when it comes to gaining an audience. Making piles of money has never been my pursuit either, but being able to write full-time and also provide for my family has definitely been my dream. I think for most writers and independent authors who are stuck in day jobs this is also their aim—not to be filthy rich, but just be able to do what you love and make a living from it.
So the resolutions I’ve made for myself from the “Passionate, Purposeful, and Prosperous… This Year!” webinar are to:
* Provide value to readers by having content that is engaging and useful
* Avoid a mindset focused on sales and numbers
* Write, write, write!
Providing value to readers by having engaging and useful content is a no-brainer. It’s always the aim of any writer, blogger, and author to inform their audience. Yes, I write fictional stories most of the time with a purpose to entertain, but let’s not forget that the most memorable fiction is that which has a deeper message to communicate. Not a preachy message or polemic, but something meaningful and ideally, informative to the reader. I can also inform my audience by providing writing tips that have worked for me, discussing the latest trends in the self-publishing industry, or writing about anything that would create engagement.
Engagement is the key.
Who wants lots of numbers and sales if no one really cares about the message you’re putting out there? And how can there be any message if you don’t write, write, write!?
I’m guilty of getting caught up in the promotion and sales game. Instead of writing the next book, short story, or informative blog post, I start running towards the numbers by reading every article on SEO, marketing, and sales trends that will put my book on the map.
Does that describe you too?
Well, it’s time to stop. It’s time to refocus and get back to the original reason you started writing. Not for sales and numbers, but for the love of writing. Let’s be honest, no audience is going to stick around long if you don’t have any content to give them. So let’s provide value, avoid a sales mindset, and write, write, WRITE because that’s how we’ll see our audience grow and our message spread.
photo by: Florin Gorgan