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Invisibility Doesn’t Sell

September 3, 2012 7 comments

The best time to start promoting your book is three years before it comes out. ~ Seth Godin

Tweet this!

There are some in the writing industry that have done more than make it work. They have thrived. When they come up with recommendations, we should pay attention.

I recently read a guest post by Seth Godin. Seth is one such man. He knows how to write and he knows how to market. We should sit up and listen.

Granted, just because something worked for him doesn’t guarantee that it will work for you or me, but we would be wise to study the model. 

Let’s repeat the model: “The best time to start promoting your book is three years before it comes out.”

I can hear it now. — Three years? You have got to be kidding? Three years is a long time. Three years can feel like an eternity. And how do your promote what you haven’t even written yet? How do you even know you’ll be publishing a book three years from now? — I hear you, because you’re echoing my thoughts.

But it’s good to take your own advice. So I sat back, read on, and listened to what Seth was honing in on. The full quote is as follows:

The best time to start promoting your book is three years before it comes out. Three years to build a reputation, build a permission asset, build a blog, build a following, build credibility and build the connections you’ll need later. ~ Seth Godin

It’s not necessarily about promoting just that one book.

It’s about building connections.

It’s about building a platform.

It’s about building credibility. 

Gone are the days when one can hide behind a pen name and still sell books. Invisibility doesn’t sell. Promotion without credibility doesn’t sell either. 

Anyone can tweet a promotion. Anyone can promote on Facebook. It takes but seconds to do either. 

What takes time is building relationships, trust, and credibility. 

Remember: Invisibility doesn’t sell!
Tweet this!

Shaking hands symbol

(Photo credit: Wikipedia)

We need to spend time in the proving ground. We need to prove that we can write, that we have a message or tale worth sharing—and that we care more about people than a sale. 

We need to earn the right to promote. Earn people’s trust, earn their loyalty, and then we will have earned permission to promote.

Maybe I did it all wrong. Maybe you did it all wrong. But it’s never too late to change. We can quit kicking ourselves. We can get to work and make the changes. And, hopefully, one day we’ll write a post on how thankful we are that we heeded Seth’s advice!

Related articles:


ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Rosie Cochran

I am a pastor’s wife, former missionary, mother of four great sons, and author of three Christian suspense novels: Betrayed, Identity Revealed, and A Murder Unseen. (Available at: Amazon.com.) I have a passion for God, my family, and writing! If you want to connect with me, join me on Twitter, Facebook, Goodreads, and Pinterest.  Interested in updates by email? CLICK HERE!

Have a question? Email Me!

HTML Code: “Tweet This!”

August 17, 2012 9 comments

Never become so much of an expert that you stop gaining expertise.
View life as a continuous learning experience.
~ Denis Waitley
Tweet this!

Always ready to learn new things, I find myself studying what I like and don’t like on blogs and websites. One of the things I like is the “Tweet this!” feature. They give a great quote. I love the quote. I want to tweet it, and voila!, they have a “Tweet this!” link all ready for me. Very cool.

So cool and techie that I wanted it. But how? How did they do it? Come to find out, it’s pretty basic HTML coding. If you’re even a bit familiar with typing in code, this won’t be a problem at all. You can copy, paste, and substitute your own text. Are you ready? Here we go!

THE CODE:

TYPE HERE WHAT YOU WANT TO TWEET Tweet this!

THE FOUR PARTS:

Part One:  TYPE HERE WHAT YOU WANT TO TWEET

This is where you’ll substitute whatever it is you want to. In the example that follows, I’m going to substitute in: No tears in the writer, no tears in the reader. No surprise in the writer, no surprise in the reader. ~ Robert Frost

Part Two: 

This will stay the same every time. The  code is the link that will direct you to Twitter to sign in and then send this tweet.

Part Three:  TYPE HERE WHAT YOU WANT TO TWEET via@YOUR-TWITTER-ACCOUNT “

Yes, you really are going to type right here what you want to tweet. This can vary from the actual words you typed in under PART ONE, but be sure you’re not changing it so much that the one tweeting it thinks you’re tricking them! In the example that follows, I’m going to substitute in: No tears in the writer, no tears in the reader. No surprise in the writer, no surprise in the reader. ~ Robert Frost via @RosieCochran

via @YOUR-TWITTER-ACCOUNT

I put my Twitter handle in there. You can sub in YOUR twitter handle—or you can leave this part off completely. Just be sure that at the end of this part that you don’t fail to keep the quote (  ) in there! Leaving it out will cause the HTML code to fail.

Part Four:  target=”_blank”>

I use the _blank target as this opens up Twitter on a new webpage in order to send the tweet. That means that after you’ve closed out from sending the tweet, my webpage should still be open in front of you. Yes, if we’re wanting traffic to our site, we don’t want people distracted and directed completely away from our website!

EXAMPLES:

The CODE with the example inserted…
(This would be under the TEXT tab in WordPress.com, where you type HTML code.)

No tears in the writer, no tears in the reader. No surprise in the writer, no surprise in the reader. ~ Robert Frost Tweet this!

…as it appears on the on the blog or webpage…
(This is how it would also appear under the VISUAL tab in WordPress.com.)

No tears in the writer, no tears in the reader. No surprise in the writer, no surprise in the reader. ~ Robert Frost Tweet this!

…and as it appears as a TWEET.

No tears in the writer, no tears in the reader. No surprise in the writer, no surprise in the reader. ~ Robert Frost via @RosieCochran

DRESSING IT UP:

Of course, once it’s done, you can center it, put it in a quote box, or whatever you want to do. See what I’ve done below!

“No tears in the writer, no tears in the reader.
No surprise in the writer, no surprise in the reader.”
~ Robert Frost
Tweet this!

WHEN THINGS DON’T GO AS THEY SHOULD…

If you type in the code, but it mostly disappears when you save it, it’s a sure sign that you’re omitting or adding something that you can’t. Type it again and compare it with the example under THE CODE. Some common errors are:

1) Omitting the quotation marks or carats.

2) Using quotation marks around the quote within the HTML code. The problem is that quotation marks are code and can only be used as required for the HTML coding.

For example, under PART THREE, type the following: No tears in the writer, no tears in the reader. No surprise in the writer, no surprise in the reader. ~ Robert Frost via @RosieCochran

Do NOT type in the following quotation marks: “No tears in the writer, no tears in the reader. No surprise in the writer, no surprise in the reader.” ~ Robert Frost via @RosieCochran

A lengthy explanation? Yes, it has become that. I trust that in short order you’ll be coding “Tweet this!” quickly and accurately!


ABOUT THE AUTHOR: Rosie Cochran

I’m a mother of four great sons. I’m a widow who has transitioned back into full-time missions with NTM as a staff writer in their communications department. I’m also an author of three Christian suspense novels: BetrayedIdentity Revealed, and A Murder Unseen. (Available at: Amazon.com.) Greater than that, I am a child of God with a passion for God, my family, and writing! If you want to connect with me, join me on TwitterFacebookGoodreads, and Pinterest. Interested in updates by email? CLICK HERE!

Have a question? Email Me!

4 Steps to Remove the Share and/or Like Features

September 15, 2011 3 comments

On your WordPress blog, there may be times you don’t want the SHARE THIS or LIKE feature to be visible on your blog.

Please note that POSTS have both the SHARE THIS and LIKE features, whereas PAGES only have the SHARE THIS feature.

Here’s how to remove these features:

1. Go to the Dashboard, then click on PAGES or POSTS in the left-hand column.

2. Click on EDIT under the name of the PAGE or POST for which you wish to remove the SHARE THIS and/or LIKE feature.

3. Scroll to the bottom of the screen below the document box and follow the directions below for either a PAGE or a POST.

  • For a POST, scroll to the LIKES AND SHARES heading. There will be the following two checkboxes: (1) show likes on this post; and, (2) show sharing buttons on this post. Remove the check-mark from one or both of the boxes.
  • For a PAGE, scroll to the SHARING heading. Under the header there will be a checkbox beside “Show sharing buttons on this post.” Remove the check-mark from the checkbox.

4. Click the UPDATE button in the left-hand column under the PUBLISH heading.

Congratulations! Now you can go to that PAGE or POST and see that the SHARE THIS and/or LIKE features have been removed. Repeat the process for each individual page or post.

4 Quick Steps to Removing the WordPress Comment Box

August 5, 2011 13 comments

Usually when one has a blog, one hopes that people will make comments. It’s a nice affirmation that someone is actually reading your blog—and hopefully liking it too!

However, there may be times when you prefer NOT to have a Comment Box on a blog. For me, this moment came while working on a simpler solution for church Websites. I wanted something user-friendly, something that, once set up, could be updated without the need to understand HTML or CSS. WordPress.com looked very promising!

The problem was that the Comment Box on the individual pages gave it a very bloggish look, while I was after more of Website look. It gave it an amateurish look, which was definitely not the look I was going for. There is, thankfully, a quick and simply way to remove the Comment Box from the individual pages. Here’s how!

1. Go to the Dashboard, then click on PAGES in the left-hand column.

2. Click on QUICK EDIT under the name of the page for which you wish to remove the comment box.

3. Remove the check-mark from the ALLOW COMMENTS checkbox in the right-hand column under QUICK EDIT.

4. Click the UPDATE button.

Congratulations! Now you can go to that page and see that the Comment Box is no longer there. You may repeat the process for each individual page where you do not want a Comment Box.

15 Steps to Make a Facebook Page Badge

I love WordPress blogs. The one complaint I do have is the lack of ability to use the standard LIKE BOX to direct people from my WordPress blog to my Facebook Page. WordPress.com blogs do not accept the coding used by Facebook for that wonderful LIKE BOX.

There is a workaround that, though it may not allow people to LIKE your Facebook Page without going directly to it, it does give a one click link to your Facebook Page with enough pizzazz to encourage them to visit it. Of course, why should they like your Page without seeing it anyway?

When they arrive at your Page, it’s up to you to be sure your Facebook Page is inviting, causing them to click on the coveted LIKE button. For more information on creating a welcoming Facebook Page check out the following two articles: What Is a Facebook Welcome Page? and Customized Facebook Profile Picture. And now, for the instructions….

15 Steps to Make a Facebook Page Badge:

1. On your FACEBOOK PROFILE (not Page), scroll down to the bottom of the left-hand column and click on ADD A BADGE TO YOUR SITE.

2. Click on PAGE BADGES at the bottom of the left-hand column. A PREVIEW will be displayed.

3. Click on EDIT THIS PAGE on the far right of the boxed in area.

4. Click on the various combinations to create a FACEBOOK PAGE BADGE that appeals to you.

(i) Under LAYOUT, you can choose: vertical, horizontal, or 2 columns.

(ii) Under ITEMS, you can choose any combination of the following:  Name, Status, Picture, and Fans.

For mine, I chose Picture and Fans only because my customized Facebook Page Profile Picture included all the other information I wanted. (See Example 1)

5. Click on SAVE.

6. Click on the OTHER icon.

7. Click on the CODE shown below the ICONS to SELECT it, then COPY it (CTRL+C) to the clipboard.

8. Log in to your WORDPRESS BLOG and go to your DASHBOARD.

9. In the left-hand column scroll down to APPEARANCE, then under APPEARANCE click on WIDGETS.

10. Under AVAILABLE WIDGETS, click on the TEXT widget. Click, hold and drag the TEXT widget to the desired SIDEBAR at the right-hand side of the screen.

11. Click on the DOWN ARROW on the right-hand corner of the TEXT widget you just dragged to the SIDEBAR.

12. In the TITLE area, type in your desired title.

Since I want to encourage people to LIKE my Facebook Page, I wrote the following for my TITLE: Help Me by “Liking” My Facebook Page! (See Example 2)

13. Paste (CTRL+V) the CODE you saved to the clipboard while in Facebook into the open text area below the TITLE.

14. Click on SAVE at the bottom right of the box.

15. Click on CLOSE at the bottom left of the box.

Go to your blog! Do you like what you see? Remember, adjustments can always be made.

5 Simple Steps to a Snapshot of Your Computer Screen

Have you ever wanted to get a snapshot of your computer screen?
It’s not difficult to do at all!

Follow the 5 Simple Steps Below:

1) Display what you want a snapshot of on your computer screen. For example, for my article called What Is a Facebook Welcome Page? I wanted a snapshot of the my Facebook Welcome Page.  I needed to display that on my computer screen first.

2) Next, press the PRINT SCREEN button on your computer keyboard. It will probably be marked as PrtScn. This will effectively take a “snapshot” of the your screen, pasting it to the Clipboard.

3) Open up the desired program Microsoft Paint (or another graphics program) and then open a New File within that program. If you don’t need a graphic/picture format for the intended use of the snapshot, you can use Microsoft Word, or another word processing program.

4) Paste (Ctrl+V) the snapshot of your screen from the Clipboard into your opened New File.

5) Name and save the file. Depending on the capabilities of your software, you should be able to edit, re-size or modify the screen snapshot. The example below shows the Welcome Page of my Facebook Page, excluding the web browser information.

How to Add an “E-mail Me” Widget

June 6, 2011 3 comments
Mail symbol

Image via Wikipedia (Public Domain)

Have you ever wondered how to add an E-mail Me widget in WordPress? Or maybe you are reading this and wondering what on earth a widget is! If you’re not sure what a widget is, click here on “What’s a Widget?” to find out. After you’ve been enlightened, and are so excited to start using widgets, you can come back here to make your own E-mail Me widget!

Making an E-mail Me widget is not difficult. It will involve needing to type in some HTML code, but don’t let that intimidate you, just follow the step-by-step directions below:

1) Go to your Dashboard.

2) Near the bottom on the left-hand side, click on Appearance, then Widgets.

3) Under Available Widgets, click and hold on Text, dragging it to your Sidebar.

4) Click on the down arrow at the right side of Text to open a text box to work in.

5) Under Title, type “E-mail Me.”

6) In the box below that, type in the following, substituting YOUR email address for the sample shown:

<a href=”mailto:yourname@gmail.com”>yourname@gmail.com</a>

7) Click save, click on the arrow to close the box, then go to your blog and test it out!

The advantage of keeping your e-mail address visible is for those odd times when the link fails to connect to the e-mail program. It gives your readers the opportunity to copy and paste your e-mail address if needed. However, if you don’t want your e-mail visible, you may substitute another phrase—just be sure to keep the first part to create the link! You may substitute another phrase such as “Click here to contact me!” for the last part, as shown below:

<a href=”mailto:yourname@gmail.com”>Click here to contact me!</a>

Now people can contact you directly with any questions. You can check out my E-mail Me widget on the right-hand side of my blog. For those using Blogger/Blogspot, this same coding can be used in the Text/HTML Gadget box.

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