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Book Review: ‘Online Marketing for Busy Authors’ by Fauzia Burke

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New book helps authors market their books online

New book helps authors market their books online

Digital book marketing pioneer Fauzia Burke has been in the publishing business for two decades. She has worked with bestselling authors, first-time authors, longtime authors, celebrity authors, and some self-published authors. She has written a new book, Online Marketing for Busy Authors, filled with what it takes to successfully sell a book using online resources.

Becoming a bestselling author is a favorite among dream careers. People have heartfelt dreams of sitting at a computer and writing about everything in their hearts and minds. Being a writer is a good life but it’s not a perfect life.

It takes a lot of hard work to make any type of writing good enough that readers will search out and enjoy it. Then, getting that writing into readers’ hands takes double or triple the amount of work. I’ve heard so many first-time authors say that writing the book was the easy part. The efforts it takes to sell the book came as a surprise and a shock.

“Whether you’re writing your first book or you write three books a year, you are probably very busy and you must make every minute count,” writes Burke. She goes on to tell readers, “I am not going to tell you that if you follow my advice, your book will be #1 on Amazon (that would be a great sales pitch, though), but I can tell you if you follow my advice, you will create meaningful interactions with your readers and build a long-term, successful personal brand online.”

I’ve met and interviewed many authors who are actually afraid of their readers. They worry about rejection or criticism and losing their private time, which many say they need that time need to write.

It’s an attitude that has confused me because writing and publishing is a business. To be able to live the life of a writer and an author, you need to sell your writing. At the heart of all types of sales is the relationship building between the seller (in the case of writing, it’s the writer/author) and the buyer (the readers).

As a freelance journalist, I have to continually meet new people so that I can find new and good stories to write about. It may help if writers begin to think of marketing their writing as way of investing in their own talents, skills, knowledge and experience.

Burke’s book takes authors through the varied ways to build a personal brand that readers will be attracted to and follow. It all starts with the personal brand statement.

“A personal brand statement allows you to carve out your niche and helps you decide the content and tone of what you share,” Burke writes.

The book contains several worksheets and checklists to help authors determine personal brand statements, build marketing plans and websites, compiling mailing lists, building and maintaining blogs, and selecting a public relations firm. There are also sections on building a social media presence in Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter.

The book is well-written, easy to read and covers all of the bases for online marketing. I read through the book the first time in just a few hours. The checklists are extremely helpful.

I’ve only ever self-published one book myself and found the marketing to be a challenge (and one of my degrees is in marketing). The company I self-published with sold me this same information as part of a marketing package I purchased for the book, costing me hundreds of dollars.

For less than $17, you can get the information in Burke’s new book. I’d recommend it for all kinds of writers from authors to bloggers to book reviewers. Any writer can find helpful information in this book to help build a personal brand for their writing endeavors and investments.

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