Let’s set a few things straight before I continue:

  • I am not a blogging expert
  • I am not a marketing expert
  • I am not the trendsetters’ expert

I started www.bonesnap.com years ago. I switched over to a blogging format because of the ease-of-use content management system. Like everyone else, I tried various commercial tactics to offset the cost of running a website.

One thing I hate about websites is being bombarded with marketing ads. I am turned off by popups and scrolling ads that website owners use to try to make money. I wanted a less intrusive way – so I just added a footer at the bottom of my site.  I have since removed it.

I’ve been in the IT world for almost twenty years. I’ve dealt with large corporations and small corporations and thousands of users. One common and not talked about item is the art of the passive sale.

Companies figured out that they could sale more when they get a consumer intrigued enough follow up. Take www.Adobe.com for example, their web site doesn’t hit you in the face with that buy-buy-buy advertising.

Sure, they have advertisements but they are not very intrusive. Instead, they show you features or information to develop an ‘interest’ in their product.

Now, let’s focus on Self-Publishers.

During these final stages of editing my book, I had to do a lot of research for marketing and sales. One item is that is highly recommend, is for the self-publisher to create a blog.

In my opinion, the functionality of a blog is for ANYONE is the creation of a unique ‘BRAND’ for the blogger.

That means for a self-publisher –the function of a blog should be to create an author’s-brand. The end game is to spark the interest of a casual browser, turn them into a potential subscriber, and eventually create a brand loyalty – ending in book sales.

On any given hour, I will cruise around on Linkin’s various writers groups and see hundreds of links to author’s blogs. A vast majority of these links take you right to the book’s sales page. These pages range from sample material to count down timers.

That is to be expected. However, if this is your blogs HOMEPAGE, I think this is more detrimental than helpful.

First impression is everything. I am turned off when the first impression I get is “buy this.” I want to be lure in with a witty article, or how your writing changed your life, something other than a sales pitch.

There is nothing wrong with branding. There is nothing wrong with advertising and selling your wares – I just think it is shallow if that all you are doing.

I know we all want sales. We all want people to read what we have created. It is our passion and sometimes we are blinded by it.

Ask yourself:

  • How many sites did I click on just to leave in five seconds?
  • Why did I leave?
  • Is my site like this?

Let me know what you think.

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