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Cross pollinating and the writing industry

By Jennie Atkins

Marketing and online presence, whether we like it or not, have become a large part of what an author must do to succeed. Our writing time now includes posts to social media websites, such as Facebook, Twitter, or Pinterest. Instead of adding pages to our work in process, we’re adding posts to our blog. Authors need to discover their brand and create a social presence all while turning out a quality manuscript that glues readers to the pages of our story.

We need to find our niche, a personal trademark, so we can sell our name and our books to more than our closest friends and love ones.

Then what?

How do we reach out to those beyond our current set of demographics and influence others who may be interested in what we write? We can’t be everywhere, but we can take advantage of our connections by using the old marketing technique of sharing our “customer list”.

I love gardening. I grow perennials, roses, and vegetables. My blog, depending on the season, is where I share what I’ve learned about gardening over the years. But I know I’m not the only person out there who enjoys gardening, whether it be a large area in the back yard or a small ceramic pot on an apartment balcony. Nor do I believe I’m the only writer that spends time in her garden either. So why can’t I share space on my blog to introduce other authors who love to garden?

Writers with similar interests can cross-pollinate, do guest posts on each other’s blogs, and easily get additional exposure. If done regularly, it introduces one writer’s personal tribe to the other-and vice versa. Isn’t that what marketing is all about? Marketing is NOT just plopping pictures or random comments about the weather, current events, or a cute video out on Facebook or Twitter. It’s about making our names unforgettable and establishing a connection with readers, which will make them more apt to purchase our books.

Cross pollination can reach people not already in our limited scope of influence. It’s no different from one company purchasing personal information from another company to add to their customer contact list. Only this is free!

By working with like-minded writers, upcoming releases can be promoted, content of our personal blogs can be broadcasted, or just our passion for “X” (gardening in my case) can be shared. By trading guest posts, it results in no extra work for either writer.

What are you passionate about? Do you like to cook? Make quilts? Or ski? Then it’s time to find other authors with similar interests and share media time with them. We are in the day and age where publishers are looking for their authors to have an online presence, this might be exactly what we need to increase our online tribes.

What do you think?

JennieAtkins-sJennie Atkins writes contemporary romance from her home located just outside of Carson City, Nevada. During the day, Jennie manages a team of software engineers. Along with writing, Jennie loves to garden, sew, or go four-wheeling with her husband of almost forty years. Jennie has four children and three grandchildren.

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One Response to Cross pollinating and the writing industry

  1. Excellent advice, Jennie. Another thing we can do is to use twitter to connect with like-minded people by using hashtags. For you, it would be something like #gardening or #flowers. That would let your tweets be seen by others with your passion and often they will pop over to your blog to see what you have to say.