Understanding how online and offline marketing channels can work together is essential to the financial success of your book. These channels, if used together consistently, can help you as the author achieve sustainable competitive advantage. It will also help your book generate a steady stream of income.
Here is a brief discussion and explanation on book marketing channels and how they can help you become a more successful author:
What is a “marketing channel”?
Here is the quick explanation: A marketing channel simply refers to the places where you can interact with your audience. Each of these venues or channels allows you to show your audience that you love and are experienced in your particular micro-niche. These channels also give you and your audience a direct way to hear each other and share information. This process of listening and sharing is how meaningful, lasting and profitable relationships are built between you and your audience.
How is a “marketing channel” different from a “sales channel”?
Here is the quick explanation: A sales channel simply refers to the way your books are kept and sold to book buyers or the end consumer. These channels include online bookstores, physical bookstores, book distributors, wholesalers, etc. These are often called indirect sales channels. But if you sell your book directly from your home or office, you are also part of the sales channel. This would be called a direct sales channel.
There are two main ways to analyze the different categories of marketing channels available to book marketers. These are 1. online marketing channels and 2. offline marketing channels.
1. Online marketing channels
1.a. The online marketing channels you control
What online methods or media are you going to use to speak to your audience? And show them that you have something to say? This could and should involve your blogging, article marketing, guest posting, podcasting, creating videos, using Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, etc. All of these channels would become part of your social media marketing efforts, also known as your author platform.
1 B. Online Marketing Channels You Don’t Control
Other online marketing channels include those that you don’t have direct control over. Like blogs and websites that share or republish your blog posts. This also includes reviews of your book that are written and posted on other blogs. Or other bloggers who quote you or your book in their own blog posts. Or share your infographics, slideshows, videos, etc.
2. Offline marketing channels
Offline channels can also directly affect your online marketing and sales. This includes all of your marketing efforts that are not done online. Some of the most obvious examples are the use of postcards and direct mail newsletters to keep your customers informed of new information that you think they would benefit from. Another is to send your clients reminders and notices or birthday cards, for example. And also call them on the phone or send them a text message.
For example, if you are an accountant, you can ask your clients to share one of your articles online with your online audience. Or send your past clients a reminder notice of the next tax season’s deadlines. If you are a chef in a gourmet food market, for example, you can chat with your customers face-to-face about the food; give cooking lessons in your kitchen; give out free recipes, etc.
There are countless ways to market offline to your audience. It doesn’t matter what profession you are in. It just takes a little creative thinking and a desire to share information to find fun new ways to build and connect with your audience.
Now you must realize that the joint use of online and offline channels can create an extremely powerful and profitable way to market your books. By combining each one, you will create a marketing program that will build strength and momentum that will continue to help you consistently sell books in the long run.