I have a confession to make—I can’t keep up. It’s not that I can’t keep up with marketing best practices and innovations. I have a passion for more information that will help me get the job done better and faster. That will never go away. I love data and systems—I am a nerd. I need to learn. I will always be a marketer.
What I can’t keep up with anymore is the shifting landscape of what book marketers are pushing as the latest and greatest thing. Writers are desperately looking for anything and everything that will catapult them to instant success and marketers are banking on that desire. What is valued now is hype and hustle and shortcuts. Not that there’s anything wrong with that.
But alas, I am not a hustler. I cannot push “new technology” just because it’s the shiny new toy. I cannot guarantee that my courses will make you a New York Times bestselling author or generate a six-figure income. I am too strategic for that. No marketing system will make you a NY Times bestselling author–your books have to be good first. And unfortunately, every book out there does not have that potential. And that is not every author’s aspiration.
My background is business marketing, not entrepreneurship or sales. I am increasingly aware of the number of people gaining notoriety in the book marketing space that don’t value strategic marketing, just tools and tips–whatever works in the short term. But this is the flavor of the month. I need to let the new deconstructed system of marketing run its course without trying to be the voice in the wilderness. That is tiring. This nontraditional system may be the best fit for the majority of authors. It is not a good fit for me.
And this has been a long time coming. Becca and I have been mulling this conundrum over for almost a year. This year has been one of personal change for me as well and change takes its toll on your personal energy. Selling a home, buying another across the country, packing, remodeling, unpacking, getting settled in a new community, traveling to see family, a new granddaughter—these are all things that have occupied my time. I have worked hard to create the energy to keep up with my online classes, help my daughter transition her platform, and take on a new project with a friend. My focus is turning.
So I’ve come to a disconcerting fork in the road. One where I need to let go of some things to establish new things I feel called to do. In the next couple months, Becca and I will be outlining these new directions on our podcast. For those of you still on the journey in my online classes, nothing will change. I will continue to produce simple, inexpensive online classes for authors who are interested in strategic, long-haul marketing. My closed Facebook group for online students will continue and I will be increasing my presence there to help the people that have invested in learning via my online courses. I am still dedicated to serving and helping authors that want to learn how to market for the long run–that want to learn how to build a business and not just short term sales.
The first step in this journey is to close the membership in the SMART Marketing For Authors Facebook group (not the online student group). It has reached the capacity I originally set to be able to keep up. Eventually, we will be phasing this group out.
My journey in book marketing is not over. But my path will change. My energy will be re-focused. I want to keep up with those of you that share this vision of strategic marketing and I’ll be working at that more over the coming months. Stay tuned.
For you regular podcast listeners, we’ll be back September 10 with a news podcast and a special guest.