IWSG: Angela Ackerman – Finding Your Target Audience

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Insecure Writer’s  Support Group

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The awesome co-hosts for the October 1 special anniversary posting of the IWSG will beKristin Smith, Elsie, and Fundy Blue! and Suzanne Furness http://suzannefurness.blogspot.com/

Have you ever searched for your marketing guru, that person with the knowledge, resources, and heart to guide the novice author marketer? I’ve been stalking the blogosphere for someone who has the passion to help authors with respect to marketing needs and be able to talk in real people language.

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Recently, I attended the writers convention in Calgary, Alberta. There I  met Angela Ackerman, an author, marketer, and administrator of the award-winning writer’s resource blog, Writers Helping Writers. Her upbeat energy and welcoming smile drew me in to risk another disappointing connection. Over the past several weeks, I’ve been over-whelmed with her professionalism and enthusiasm to help other writers.

I received her article “5 Steps to Find Your Book’s Ideal Audience.” Up until today, I have floundered with this critically important endeavor. Thanks to Angela, I now can map out a plan and look forward to (1) connecting with people who will enjoy my novel, and (2) see my sales record go through Amazon’s roof.

In summary, here is what Writers Helping Writers recommends:

  1. Know what makes your book special. Move beyond just genre. What themes or elements are unique about your book? What are the strongest qualities about your hero or heroine that make them likeable? What concept makes your book pop?
  2. Make a list of groups that tie into this element. You can find these groups on twitter (hashtag), facebook, blogs.
  3. Identify possible influencers and opportunities. You want to find several groups or blogs that offer content to their readers that would also appeal to your readers.
  4. Connect and engage. You need to connect. Interact. Join conversations. Discuss your own collection, the books you read, the movies you watch. Talk to people, find out more about them. Talk about life. Ask questions. Be genuine. Add to the conversation, supply links to things you think others will find interesting connected to your novel’s themes. Build relationships.
  5. Create book events that draw in your reading audience.  The trick is to create an event that utilizes Social Media well, and draws the attention of the right people: people most suited to enjoy our book. Unfortunately this has been made harder because of all the “White Noise” of online promotion out there. So, the task is up to us to WOW people enough that they take notice, and don’t dismiss the event as more “book promotion.” When you create your event, keep your theme or special element in mind. Build around it.

I believe the key word is that the author needs to make connections, GENUINE CONNECTIONS. People know when you’re just trying to sweet talk them into buying your book.  Doesn’t work. The second point is that this takes time and energy. Sooner, or later, your professional marketing plan will begin to snowball.

Writers Helping Writers Bookstore:  I have purchased one of Angela’s books, The Emotion Thesaurus: A Writer’s Guide to Character Expression and she has two more that I’ll be purchasing: The Positive Traits Thesaurus and The Negative Trait Thesaurus.

Webinars & Workshops Online:

Angela and her blog partner, Becca, have scheduled an exciting event:

The Marketing Marriage: Creative Social Media Solutions to Help Your Book Event Get Noticed

Instructor(s): Angela Ackerman & Becca Puglisi
Price(s): $35.00 USD
Where: WANA Virtual Classroom
When:   October 13th from 8-9:30pm PM NY Time (US Eastern)

ANGELA ACKERMAN lives near Calgary, Alberta, just a short drive from the Canadian RAngelaockies. She is a co-author of the popular book, The Emotion Thesaurus: A Writer’s Guide To Character Expression which profiles seventy-five emotions to help writers show, not tell what their characters are feeling.

She also helped pen The Positive Trait Thesaurus: A Writer’s Guide to Character Attributes and The Negative Trait Thesaurus: A Writer’s Guide to Character Flaws. Two halves of character building, these books will help authors create meaningful, break out characters with strong motives, dark secrets, fears and emotional wounds that must be overcome.

A writer of Chapter Books, Middle Grade and Young Adult, her work has appeared in Spider Magazine, Wee Ones Magazine and several local city newsletters. When she isn’t plotting about pirates, zombies or monsters made of cereal, she enjoys creating writing tools, photography and taking in the natural beauty of Alberta with her family.

Angela is an active member of SCBWI, moderates for The Critique Circle, an online critique community and runs the award-winning writer’s resource blog, Writers Helping Writers.

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5 thoughts on “IWSG: Angela Ackerman – Finding Your Target Audience

  1. Oh wow–what a beautiful write up! Thank you so much! It was great to meet you, and get to know you a bit better. This journey can be hard sometimes and having support–making those GENUINE connections–really are key in everything we do. So glad the article helped follow up what I discussed in that presentation. I’m excited to give it again via webinar here on the 13th!

    have a great week!

    Angela

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