How to Easily Set-Up a Blog to Promote Your Book


Blogs are increasingly becoming a valuable marketing tool for writers. Plus, they are so easy to use and set-up that every writer should have one (especially since they’re free). Even technophobes can embrace blogs.

What is a blog?

A blog is basically an easy-to-use website. Amazingly, blogs are free and require no technical know-how to use. Once you set it up, you log-in, enter the title of your entry, type in your entry (or cut and paste from your word processor), and press a button. What you just wrote is immediately available for all the world to read.

What should I write about?

There are no limits. Some authors use their blogs as part of their free-writing exercises. For a lucky few this has resulted in more people learning about their blogs than their books—until the readers of the blog discovered the writer also had books. Others use blogs to communicate to fans or to keep people posted on the progress of their latest books. Some writers have created blogs “written by” a character in their novel. This allows your novel to come alive while also promoting it. What you can do with your blog is only limited by your imagination.

I’m not sure a blog is right for me.

Some authors are nervous that they won’t pick the right topic for their blog or they’re concerned that they’ll start something they won’t finish. Sometimes it is helpful to start with a test blog to get the feel of it. Register a blog under a different name and try it out (note: you’ll have to provide an email address, but it is kept private). A test blog will help you find your voice online, learn how often you feel comfortable posting, and play with different blog topics. When you’re ready, you can either change the name associated with the blog to your name or create a new blog.

How do I get started?

Visit one of the blogging sites and create an account to get started. One of the most commonly used is Blogger. You should not have to enter any personal information beyond your name and email address. If your credit card is requested, choose another company (unless there is viable reason for doing so). You’ll be asked to name your blog (have some alternatives available since your first choice may be taken already) and provide a summary of your blog. Keep in mind that you can change the summary of your blog at anytime. Some authors change their summaries weekly until they find the right topic.

Once you create your blog account, you’ll be guided through the step-by-step process including things like choosing the look of your blog from a variety of established templates. After the basics are done you can post your first entry. The entire process shouldn’t take more than 7 minutes.

Now that I have a blog, what should I do?

Links. Links. Links. If you have a website you should add a link to your blog. And put a link to your website on your blog. Also, put a link to your blog in the signature file of your email. Make sure you tell everyone on your email list about your blog. Most importantly, put a link to information about your book on the blog.

Many blogs allow you to register to collect revenue from advertisements placed on your blog. If this is of interest to you, there should be information about getting started on the main page of your blog’s host.

What should I expect with a blog?

Expect to be surprised by how much fun it is to have a blog. Blogs can bring a new dimension to a writer’s work because everything written immediately has an audience. However, be patient because it take time to start getting regular visits to your blog. Be consistent and persistent then watch your readership grow.

by David Tortorelli

David Tortorelli is editor of Author Insider and serves as president of the book marketing firm, Book Premieres.

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