The Anatomy of a Writer’s Website

Posted in Book Marketing on February 28th, 2011 by admin


by  Linda Formichelli

If you want to get your writing noticed and don’t have a website, you’re falling behind. A website is essentially your online business card—it shows editors and publishers you can do the job, nets potential readers and makes you accessible to anyone who might want you for a book or article assignment. My very first website, which I built using a book on HTML that I found in a phone booth, landed me a column gig that lasted more than a year. Now, several iterations later, my website is a place to show editors my clips, entice writers to take my e-courses, convince them to buy my books, reach out to the media and land speaking engagements. If you don’t have a site, the time to act is now. It’s not as hard as you might think. Here’s how.


There are two main ways to build a website: Do it yourself or hire someone to do it for you. First, here’s how to build a website using your own two hands (and a computer).

What you see is what you get. If you have time and some design talent, you can build your own website using a WYSIWYG program—which stands for What You See Is What You Get and is pronounced whiz-ee-wig. You don’t need to mess with code the way I did when I built my first website back in 1996; with WYSIWYG programs, you can draw boxes, create columns, add graphics, input text and more, and the final result that goes online will look the way you created it on-screen. One popular WYSIWYG program is Adobe Dreamweaver (, which costs $399. I used this program to build my husband’s and my site (

If only I’d known about open-source software, I could have saved a bundle. There are WYSIWYG site building applications that are distributed for free online. One example is Nvu ( Another is KompoZer ( Both are complete Web-authoring systems for Linux, Microsoft Windows and Macintosh computers that allow users to create and manage a website with no technical expertise or
HTML knowledge.

Build an iSite. iWeb is a Web-building application that comes with new Macs, but you can also get it for $79 as part of iLife 08 ( This program lets you choose from 26 Apple-designed themes, each containing templates for all the pages you may need: “welcome,” “about me,” “blog,” “podcasts” and so on. Journalist Elaine Appleton Grant used iWeb to build her site ( “I’m happy with the results of using iWeb—people have told me my website is really beautiful,” Grant says. “It didn’t take too long and it’s easy to update.”

Trusty templates. Templates are pre-designed themes that you plug your content into. One of the most popular sources for website design templates’s WebSite Tonight plan. Besides templates and tons of extra goodies, you get hosting and e-mail accounts—an all-in-one package. Prices range from $4.99-12.99 per month depending on the features you want and the space you need.

You can also find open-source (i.e., free!) templates. For example, Open Source Web Design ( and The Open Design Community ( are collections of Web designs that anyone can download free of charge. The designs range from basic to whimsical, and you can search the databases by color, number of columns and images.

Writers’ resources. Some writers’ groups offer members free or cheap websites hosted by their sites. For example, The Authors Guild (, whose first-year dues cost $90, charges $3-9 per month for an easy-to-build site, depending on the extras you want.

Freelance Success (, which charges $99 per year, isn’t a writers’ group per se but includes market reports, a forum and a simple-to-create website that lets you choose a color scheme, add a photo and enter highlights, résumé and clips.

Blog it. Many writers turn to blogs as their main websites because they’re easy to create and update.
For example, the website of food writer and cookbook author Monica Bhide ( is built and hosted on the popular blog service TypePad ( The main page is an actual blog that Bhide updates frequently. In addition, she has an “About Me” page with her bio and publishing credits. Some writers fear that using a blog as their main business website will make them look less than professional. Not so, says Bhide. “On the contrary—I think editors are looking for writers who can write for multiple types of media.”

Blogs are free (or cheap) and easy to create, host and update. Plus, each blog service offers plenty of themes that you can choose from to fit your personal design style. You can also hire a designer to tweak the theme if you prefer. For example, Diana Burrell and I recruited a designer to modify The Renegade Writer Blog (, which was created on, to match our book cover. Other blog services besides TypePad (which costs $4.95 and up per month) include Blogger ( and; both are free.

You can also create a regular website for your business and supplement it with a blog. That’s what we did with The Renegade Writer Blog; we both also have regular websites for our clips and publishing credits.
Freelance writer and novelist Allison Winn Scotch, author of The Department of Lost and Found, has a typical website that touts her novels and clips (, but she also has a blog called “Ask Allison” ( where she answers questions from readers and chats about all things book-related. “The blog helps me sell books in ways that I never imagined,” she says. “I’ve made dozens of blogger friends who are happy to promote my novels far beyond my initial audience.”


If you have zero design skill and no time to build your own site, you’re better off hiring a designer.

Let’s talk money. Reese Spykerman, who has designed writers’ websites (including my own,, says costs vary widely. “You can get sites for less than $1,000, but these are typically people starting out and you may not get the best quality site,” he says. “A lot of writers, as long as their content isn’t too involved, can get a site for $2,000.” Some Web designers charge by the hour instead of offering a flat fee. Christie Jacobsen, a designer who has worked on writers’ websites, says prices can range from $60 per hour for a freelancer to $100 and up for a design firm.

Finding a designer. The way you find a good designer is the same way you find a good hairdresser: Ask someone with a website you admire, “Who did your site?”

“I’m a big fan of word of mouth,” Spykerman says. “If you have writer friends who have had a successful experience with a designer, that can help build your confidence in that designer. I’d be hesitant to hire someone I hadn’t heard about from someone else.”


Now that you have the scoop on how to build a site (or have one built), what do you do about the content? “Your site is to establish who you are, what your niche is and what separates you from the other authors out there,” Jacobsen says.

Here are the must-haves (or, in some cases, nice-to-haves) for a site that will wow editors and readers:

•    All about you. Somewhere on your site—whether it’s the front page or an “About Me” page—should be a bio that lets editors and readers know who you are and that you’ve got the goods. On the main page of my site, I tell readers I “wear more hats than your old aunt Millie,” and then give a brief roundup of what I offer, from articles to e-courses, with links to the relevant pages. My brief bio also appears on the “Media” page.

•    Your contact information. Don’t forget to tell people how they can contact you. “If the content on your site is appealing to an editor or publisher but they can’t easily find your contact information, that’s bad,” Spykerman says. “A dedicated contact page is important. Repeat that information on the home page.” An e-mail address or e-mail form is the minimum you should provide. You can include your phone number as well. Google’s GrandCentral service (, which is currently in the beta stages, offers one number that can ring your office and cell phones while hiding your real numbers.

•    A picture of you. While not obligatory, a photo is a nice perk to include on your site. “I felt it would be easier for editors to associate with me as a person,” says journalist Debbie Abrams Kaplan ( Her photo was professionally done; while getting family photos taken, she had the photographer take a few solo shots of her.

•    A press page. If you’re selling a book, a press page can make it easy for the media to spread the word about you and your product. “At a minimum you want your book announcement press release, some biographical information about the author, a graphic of the book cover and a headshot,” says Sandra Beckwith, who has three websites including one for her book Publicity for Nonprofits (

•    Testimonials. Testimonials and reviews can give you even more credibility than you naturally have. “Other people can say things about your qualities that you can’t say yourself,” Kaplan says. “It means more than if I were to say the same thing.” How to get them? Ask! Your favorite editors will likely be flattered that you asked them for a testimonial. If it’s a book you’re plugging, include positive reviews you’ve garnered; Scotch’s “Ask Allison,” for example, includes reviews on several pages of her site.

•    Samples of your work. To pique editors’ and readers’ interest, include sample chapters, your table of contents or clips of your articles. You can display clips in different ways: as text on your site, as downloadable PDF or Microsoft Word files, as links to online articles or even as password-protected documents so only the people you choose get a peek. Spykerman recommends having at least some of your clips as text-only on your website, as this gives search engines more text to scan (so you may come up higher in search results); also, some editors may not like spending the time to open a downloadable clip. In addition, avoid having too many links to outside sites, as the links may change and turn up an error message when editors click them.

•    Buying 411. If you’re selling a book, be sure to have a way people can snap it up right then and there, whether it’s through a form on your site or a link to your book’s page on

•    Personality. Included in the bio of freelance writer Judi Ketteler ( is this statement: “A former gymnast, I also judge gymnastics and have been known to tumble in the backyard on occasion.” Don’t be afraid to let your personality show on your website.

Learn how to create strong characters, craft believable dialogue & get the attention of agents with:
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TGIF Book Marketing Tips: Book Authors Need a Dedicated Website for Their Books

Posted in Book Marketing on December 9th, 2010 by admin


Guest Expert: Phyllis Zimbler Miller

Thanks to the online marketing opportunities made available by the Internet, authors with little or no marketing budgets can level the playing field with authors who have huge marketing budgets.

Yet before authors can truly take advantage of online marketing opportunities, these authors need a home base that they can totally control themselves.

While it is an excellent part of an online book marketing plan to have your book on sites such as, you need one place where you can publish whatever material you want about your book. (This includes a place to post book signings.)

A WordPress website provides this opportunity as well as providing a blogging platform.

Let’s start by clarifying what we are talking about. is a hosted blogging platform on which you can have a blog. But you do not control this site and must abide by the blogging rules. (known simply as WordPress) is a self-hosted blogging platform that can also be a website with static pages. Once your WordPress site is up you can totally control it, adding pages and posts with a couple of clicks. (Yes, there is a learning curve just as there was when you started using Word.)

Now if you are a writer you should definitely be blogging. You want to showcase your writing as well as have an opportunity to interact with fans when they leave comments on your blog posts. In addition, search engines love fresh content, and blogging two or three times a week provides this fresh content.

And, yes, at first it appears that nonfiction authors have the upper hand in blogging. These authors can blog about their nonfiction topics and even easily publish excerpts of their books as posts.

But truly there are numerous topics about which fiction writers can blog. For example, these topics can be related to the main subject area of your novel. (I blog on military-related topics at in connection with my novel “Mrs. Lieutenant.”)

Some fiction writers blog about writing in general or share excerpts of their fiction writing on their blogs. If you would like more blogging ideas for fiction writers, see the free report that Carolyn Howard-Johnson and I wrote

Here are some important elements to have on your book author website:

  • Make it clear the moment someone lands on your website whether your book is fiction or nonfiction and whether it is upcoming or already published.
  • If published, make it really easy to spot the “buy” button (this button or link should be “above the fold” – before a person has to scroll down your home page).
  • Include prominently displayed links to your social media profiles such as on Twitter and Facebook so fans can connect with you online besides at your website.
  • Include a photo of the cover of your book.
  • Include downloadable book discussion guidelines – yes, make it easy for book clubs to read your book.
  • Include an excerpt of your book.
  • Offer reviews of your book.
  • Provide information about you the author.
  • Feature an email opt-in box to capture email addresses.

When considering how to get a WordPress website that will work for you, be aware that there are WordPress websites and then there are WordPress websites.

What I mean by this is that there is a wide range of prices for getting a WordPress website up and running. Unsuspecting authors can get what they consider are great-looking sites, but these sites may not be search engine optimized. In other words, the sites may not have been set up to attract the search engines.

My company Miller Mosaic Power Marketing has established a collaboration with Doron Orenstein of Magnetic Webworks in which Doron builds search-engine optimized WordPress websites. (See )

For each website that Doron builds he gives the website owner a $50 gift certificate to . Plus each website owner gets ongoing access to how-to videos created by my company to help people effectively use their WordPress website.

And when should you have a book author website?

The sooner the better. Yes, the optimum time to have the website and start blogging is way before your book is published. You want to use the lead time to create strong relationships with potential fans so they will be eagerly awaiting the publication of your book.

Phyllis Zimbler Miller is the author of the and has an M.B.A. from The Wharton School and is a co-founder of the social media marketing You can download her FREE report “Twitter, Facebook and Your Website: A Beginning Blueprint for Harnessing the Power of 3” at

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How to Maximize Your Author Website

Posted in Book Marketing on October 27th, 2010 by admin


Written by: Phyllis Zimbler Miller

Do you have a book author website that when visitors come to the site they have no idea whether your book is currently available for sale?

Does your site have a big BUY THIS BOOK NOW or COMING SOON headline?

Your website visitors are not mind readers. And even if they were, they have better things to do than figure out what you want them to do in connection with your book.

If your book is for sale, make it easy for your website visitors to click a link and immediately buy your book. If your book is on Amazon, you can put your book’s Amazon widget “above the fold” and on every page of the site.

And even if your book isn’t out yet, it is a good idea to have a website to start attracting interest. BUT – and this is an important but – let website visitors immediately know the book is not yet out so they don’t get frustrated trying to find the BUY button and click away. And at the same time do try to capture the email addresses of the website visitors so that you can notify people when the book is available.

One good way to interest people in following the progress of your upcoming book is to include a blog on your website. Then, of course, the challenge is writing blog posts that your target market finds of value. While this is easier with nonfiction books because you can blog about your book’s subject area, writing blog posts about a novel can also be done.

Now that we’ve covered this most important book author website element, let’s briefly look at some other essential elements.

On the home page “above the fold” – let people know what your book is about. Don’t make people guess whether it is fiction or nonfiction if the title doesn’t make this clear.

Don’t use, for example, dark blue type against a light blue background. Or at least don’t use this if you want people to actually read what your book is about. Preferably use black type (of a large-enough size) on a white background for ease of reading.

Do include book discussion guidelines to encourage reading groups to consider your book.

Do make it very clear how someone can get in touch with you or learn more about you: Include your Twitter username, Facebook profile, etc. as well as email address.

And do include a photo of yourself on your website – readers like to know what the author of a book looks like.

One final recommendation: If your book is still in the planning stage, make sure that the cover of the book “reads” well reduced to the size of a book displayed on Amazon. If you have a great cover that only makes an impact full-size, re-consider that design. You want a book cover that can make an impact in a much smaller size. – P.Z.M.

Phyllis Zimbler Miller is a National Internet Business Examiner at as well as a book author, and her power marketing company combines traditional marketing principles and Internet marketing strategies to put power in your hands.

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Starter Video: Web Design Service –

Posted in Starter Video on July 14th, 2010 by admin

This audio-visual presentation convinces every self-published author that a website is a pre-requisite for book marketing campaigns. It rallies on the idea that author websites serve as an online bookstore, that’s open for prospective readers, even the ones across the globe, for 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

Produced by and for, the video was conceptualized and edited by its own video marketing team.

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9 Tips for How to Market Your Book on a Limited Budget

Posted in Book Marketing on July 2nd, 2010 by admin

9 Tips for How to Market Your Book on a Limited Budget

By: Phyllis Zimbler Miller

There are thousands of ways to market your book. And after months of marketing my book MRS. LIEUTENANT: A SHARON GOLD NOVEL, I’ve come up with a list of what I’ve found to be the most effective and important tips for getting the word out on a limited budget about your book.

Tip #1 – Get a website:

Have a website ready to go the moment your book is out. And then connect your website directly to your book’s page on Amazon (and other sites too). (For example, see

Tip #2 – Write discussion guidelines:

Have discussion guidelines available to download as a pdf off your website. And if you’ve written an adult book, consider including a section of questions for teens.

Tip #3 – Provide free chapters:

Have the first few chapters available as free pdf downloads off your website. This is a great way to get readers “hooked” on reading the rest of the book.

Tip #4 – Do read some books on promoting your book:

Some of the books I found particularly helpful are:

Sell Your Book on Amazon by Brent Sampson (terrific ways to establish a presence on Amazon)

Red Hot Internet Publicity by Penny C. Sansevieri (you can sign up for free email info at

Plug Your Book by Steve Weber (subtitle: Online Book Marketing for Authors)

1001 Ways to Market Your Books (sixth edition) by John Kremer (huge book so for now I only read Chapter 12 — “How to Sell Books Via Computer”) (you can sign up for free email info from him at

Tip #5 – Collect all the publicity tips you can and jump on any opportunities:

Joan Stewart the Publicity Hound (sign up for free email info at has great pr tips. And sign up on to get email updates for story sources that reporters need.

Tip #6 – Start a blog as soon as possible, preferably before your book is published:

Unfortunately I only learned this wisdom right before my book was published, but I did jump right in once I did learn. (See

Tip #7 – Optimize your Amazon presence:

Make sure you take full advantage of author tools on Amazon, including having your blog feed into your AmazonConnect feature on your book’s page.

Tip #8 – Ask book bloggers to review your book:

And if they say yes, be sure to give them a free copy for themselves as well as a free copy for a contest in connection with your book. Book giveaways on book blogs are major attention-getters for people who read. (And if book bloggers really like your book, they’re often willing to post the review from their blog on Amazon and other book sites.)

Tip #9 – Take a virtual book tour:

I used <a href=””></a> to take a month-long virtual book tour (your book is featured on blogs with either a review or an interview or both), and I found the experience extremely effective for developing relationships with book bloggers.

About the Author

Phyllis Zimbler Miller is the president of and the author of Mrs. Lieutenant: A Sharon Gold Novel ( .

(ArticlesBase SC #617187)

Article Source: Tips for How to Market Your Book on a Limited Budget

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Six Website Essentials for Authors

Posted in Book Publicity on June 25th, 2010 by admin


by Corinne Liccketto

A website is a staple of any book publicity campaign. As your publicist works to solicit awareness about you and your project, it is crucial to provide those who are interested with details about your book, background, and purchasing information. When a producer, editor or reporter is contemplating covering you, the first step they take is visiting your website. Then, media coverage will often include a mention of your website to direct potential book buyers.

Here are six essentials of an author website to help you get started:

  • Purchasing Information: For most authors, selling books is a top goal. To encourage sales and for visitor convenience, showcase a link to buy your book on each page of your website. If you are selling your book yourself to maximize your profit, great! However, many people will not purchase from a site with which they are not familiar. We recommend also including Amazon, Barnes and Noble or other household name retail online and bookstore outlets. Place the link directly to your book’s page, not the general home page. If you offer bulk sales discounts, let people know and how to order!
  • Media/Press Page: To encourage the media to cover you, make availa ble both high resolution for print (300 dpi) and low resolutions for the Internet (about 72 dpi) images of you and your book cover for easy downloads. Once your publicity campaign gets underway and media runs are secured, list the press placements on your website. Not only will this build you and your book’s credentials, it shows media contacts that you do have a newsworthy story to offer. Note: If you receive copies of television and radio interviews, embed them in your press page for user convenience. Also, try to include direct links to magazine, newspaper, and Internet articles in which you and/or your book appear.
  • Author Background: A book comprises half of a publicity campaign; the other half is the author! Since you c an’t interview a book, it is crucial to provide visitors with a descriptive biography. This also allows you to highlight some of the topics not related to your book you feel qualified to discuss on the air or in an interview. Plus, this is a way to let your personality shine.
  • Post Reviews and Testimonials: Show visitors what everyone is talking about! If you are soliciting reviews from credentialed sources and consumers alike, create a ‘Reviews’ page on the site to give visitors insight into your work through reader feedback.
  • Showcase Your Expertise/Give Useful Related Links: You are typically an expert on the topics covered in your book, whether you have written a fiction or non-fiction book. Consider adding case study/by lined style articles showcasing real life successes of your philosophies in your business book, research papers you have written on the topic of domestic violence which is the theme of your new novel, or useful links and resources related to the topic of your book. Be creative and give people a reason to come back and send others to your website.
  • Build Your Social Network Connections: Did you know over 70% of adults regularly follow blogs, tweets and user-generated content? As your network of supporters builds, stay connected with individuals and businesses through social network accounts. This also helps ground your online presence. By including links on your website to your blog, and YouTube, Facebook and Twitter account profiles, you’ll encourage visitors to click through and connect!
  • Corinne Liccketto is the Sales & Marketing Manager at Smith Publicity, Inc.Beginning in 1997, Smith Publicity has evolved from a one-person operation run from a bedroom office to one of the world’s leading promotional firms. Fueled by a passion for making good things happen for clients, we’ve worked with over 900 individuals and companies–from authors and entrepreneurs to publicly-held companies and business representing a wide range of industries. The Smith Publicity reach is international; we’ve effectively worked with clients throughout the United States and Canada, and countries from the U.K. and Australia to Israel and Malta. Offices in New Jersey, New York City, Los Angeles, and London. For more information, please visit

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    Marketing your book before it’s published—9 tips for success

    Posted in Book Marketing on June 3rd, 2010 by admin

    By Sue Collier


    One of the biggest mistakes I see authors make is waiting until after they have books in hand to start promoting them. Initial sales are often disappointing, and authors end up discouraged. A book marketing plan should be in hand well before the book’s publication date, and there are many steps authors can take to help ensure their books success.

    1. Have a website. This might seem like a no-brainer. It’s worth mentioning, though, since I still do get approached by potential authors who seek help self-publishing their book, only to find they have no website. Or authors might have a website but no information on their book—even after it’s been published.

    2. Make your website “sticky.” Not only do you want to have a reason for visitors to stick around—and come back—but you want to have a way to capture their email address so you can stay in touch. Offer a free report in return for their email address; then stay in front of them with a regular ezine that provides valuable content and shares your expertise.

    3. Start a blog—and update it regularly. I know, I know. Blogging takes time, which is at a premium for most people, and it’s tough to commit to two or three entries per week. But it gives you the opportunity to share your expertise with potential book buyers. Plus search engines love the fresh content, and it will help in your web rankings. You can also share the links on Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, or other social media sites (more on that later).

    Incidentally, make sure your blog is parked at your website and doesn’t have “WordPress” or “Blogspot” in the address. You’ll miss out on valuable search engine optimization if you don’t have your own unique URL.

    4. Comment on other relevant, high-traffic blogs. Not only does this give you another opportunity to showcase your expertise, but it’s a great way to get to know people. When you leave good, informative comments in other blogs (not simply “Great post”), you can increase traffic to your own blog. People who read your comments may want to read more of what you have to say and find themselves clicking over to your own blog.

    5. Write articles. Informational and how-to articles should be submitted to high-traffic article sites. They will attract visitors back to your website, where you can offer a signup for a free ebook or ezine to share more information.

    6. Sign up for Facebook. With more than 300 million users—and growing daily—can you afford not to be there? Because your profile page is all about you—people don’t want to “friend” a book or a business; they want to connect with a person—it’s a nice way to bond with people on a bit more of a personal level and build relationships. Avoid hard selling here.

    Join relevant Facebook groups. You can find like-minded people by searching for groups in particular subject areas. This is another great way for you to communicate with others, provide valuable information, and exhibit your expertise.

    7. Create a Facebook fan page for your book. Because your profile page is all about you, you’ll want to create a Facebook fan page for your book. Here you can promote your book by adding useful tips and linking to your site.

    8. Complete your LinkedIn profile page. If you are a professional, you probably are already on LinkedIn. (If you’re not there, it’s easy to sign up.) Make sure your profile is 100 percent complete. And make sure your profile is public because it allows search engines to find you.

    Join relevant LinkedIn groups. These groups are similar to those on Facebook; they also have the added benefit of letting you communicate directly with other members, even if they are not part of your network.

    9. Join Twitter. This is the fastest-growing social networking site. A microblog that limits “tweets” to 140 characters, this busy community allows you to connect directly with people better than Facebook or LinkedIn. It offers another opportunity for you to share valuable content and your expertise. When you post a new blog entry, for instance, you can tweet it here—driving traffic to your website or blog. You can “follow” industry experts to keep abreast of the latest news.
    You are probably thinking this all sounds like a lot of work. Well, it is. But you can publish the best book in the world—but if people don’t know about it, no one will buy it. These online techniques are simple, free (unless you hire a consultant), and effective. And necessary if you intend to successfully sell books.

    About The Author

    Sue Collier

    As a writing coach and publishing consultant, I have worked with hundreds of authors, helping them write, edit, and publish hundreds of books. My book The Complete Guide to Self-Publishing is slated for publication by Writer’s Digest in March 2010. I currently own Self-Publishing Resources; we provide book writing, book packaging, and book marketing services for self-publishers and small presses.

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    Why Authors Especially Self Publishers, Need Websites

    Posted in Self-Publishing on May 27th, 2010 by admin


    By Matt Pramschufer

    Theodore Roosevelt once said, “Do what you can with what you have right where you are.” There is no better way to implement your resources than with your own website. A website provides three invaluable tools for self-publishers: worldwide advertising at the click of a mouse, lightning fast responses to customers, agents and publicists, and a website ultimately gives writers a virtual book tour without ever leaving the comfort of home. Best of all – this is an affordable option for self-publishers.

    Who needs a website? Don’t the classifieds or banner exchanges on the internet do the trick?
    The bottom line is that banners and classifieds turn people off. A website is a great method of advertising that targets not only local interests but reaches a market worldwide. And it can say as much as you want, and you leave it up to the viewer to decide what they want to read. Think of your website as a virtual brochure. It provides readers with invaluable information, at a reasonable cost, about the book and the author. The more information made available, the more buzz that can be generated about your writing.

    How would my own website facilitate communication to customers, agents, and publicists?
    The internet is now the place where journalists, and agents seek out new writers, so you can reach them without actually going to them. Journalists are looking to find the newest story about upcoming authors, and agents do the same. Either can contact you via your website and this way they are the ones doing the “knocking on the door” so to speak. And of course, customers can research invaluable information about you and your book and hopefully place orders too.

    How can my website create a virtual book tour?
    It is daunting to realize the average shelf life of a book is only three to six months and this only applies to 15% of the books that make it into stores. So how are the other 85% of books sold? Through self-promotion! Websites aid in self-promotion in that they create a virtual worldwide book tour open 24 hours a day. The website can include book discussions, purchasing information, information about the author, and so much more! This virtual book tour travels the world faster than you could ever hope to.

    Is a website really that hard to make? Can’t I do this myself?
    There are many aspects involved in developing a website that people take for granted. For instance easily understood navigation, effective color schemes, overall look and feel of the site, and proper maintenance and upkeep, not to mention proper programming for effective results in search engines. The entire process is not that hard if you know what you are doing but for the amateur it can be quite daunting. If you feel that you would like to take on the proposed project yourself by all means go for it, but just remember that a poorly designed website can hurt your advertising campaign more than not having a website at all.

    It sounds like worldwide advertising is effective, but is it cost effective for a self-publisher?
    Absolutely! Whereas other forms of advertising can be quite costly – potentially ranging into the hundreds of thousands of dollars – a website is wholly cost effective. In fact, companies like Go Publish Yourself and E-Moxie Data Solutions, Inc. offer self-publisher website design packages from $375.00.

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