Seth Godin is one of my favorites when it comes to snappy punditry. In a recent blog post entitled “Hot: A theory of propulsion,” he wisely pens that “Words on a page or on a screen are asleep, inert, doing nothing at all until they interact with you, the reader.” He continues with two more pearls. “That takes effort” and “Without motion, the words get moldy.”
The notion that promoting a piece of work is important is neither new nor trivial. However, this author of eighteen books reminds writers once again that it is our responsibility to advocate for our creations.
The good news is that promotion can be targeted and one need not become a marketer most of the time and a writer in the few remaining hours of the day. Ed Cyzewski explains in “Can You Promote a Book without Making Yourself Miserable?” that it is better to focus on a few marketing techniques and do them well. His choice is to share personal musings with subscribers to his newsletter and add to his email list by gifting short ebooks. The rationale is that people who read his newsletter are more inclined to follow him on social media.
Besides this blog about the craft of writing (I Paint With Words), I regularly contribute to two business blogs I created a few years ago (Pension Risk Matters and Good Risk Governance Pays). By researching topics for my blogs, articles or speeches, I add to my subject matter expertise. I flex my communication muscles. I grow an audience for the non-fiction books I am currently writing.
Equally as important is the opportunity to engage with individuals, get their opinions and ask them what they want to read about. Their generous feedback gives me a good sense of industry hot button issues and often validates my own views.
Marketing can be seen as a chore or an integral part of the creation process. I choose the latter.