Mail Bag Mondays: How can I get my friends to read my novel?

canstockphoto18799595Hey JC,

I’ve written an edge-of-your seat adventure novel and published it on KDP, Nook, Smashwords and several other sites about a year ago. But only a few of my friends bought it and virtually no one has told me that they read it or left any reviews. So I posted a question to all my friends on Facebook, asking them to share the reasons they haven’t bought my book yet. I made it crystal clear that this had nothing to do with guilting them to buy it. The question was for marketing purposes only. Of course I would take their money if they did feel guilty enough to buy it. But I really want them to read it and not just buy it. 

So what should I do? Do you think this will work?

Iced Out By My Friends 

Wow Ice,

I think you may have a few less friends on Facebook in a few days. Not an approach I would have taken.

But, what’s done is done. Now moving forward, you’ve got to ask yourself: who did you write this edge-of-your-seat adventure novel for? Your friends and family or for people who read adventure novels?

If you’re like me, you have some friends who are readers, and a lot who are not. Then, out of those friends who read, each has a specific genre he or she reads. For most of my personal friends, they have little to no interest in murder mysteries. That’s okay. I’m not interested in everything they’re into either. So cut them some slack.

It’s time to focus your marketing efforts on readers of the adventure genre. There’s a million ways to do that, and just as many books out there to help you get started. If you’re not a member of Goodreads.com, then start there. Sign up and join a few groups in your genre. You’ll meet some readers as well as other authors that are in the same boat. Get involved. I would recommend reading “Goodreads for Authors: How to Promote your Books on Goodreads” by Michelle Campbell-Scott.

Next, search MeetUp.com for local writing and critique groups in your area. This will connect you with other writers and workshops in your city. You’ll make new friends who share this common interest. I’m not saying you may need to find all new friends after posting that question on your Facebook page, but you know what they say: “If you can’t change your friends, change your friends.”

Good luck and keep writing.

JC

 

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