Book Marketing, Author Publicity, Branding

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Update Your Author Web Site!

I have discussed here previously how important it is for authors to have a web presence these days.  In particular, authors need a web siteA recent blog posted by Publishers Weekly underscores the importance of what I have been saying. 

Barbara Vey writes about authors on her blog, Beyond Her Book, on the Publishers Weekly web site, and she detailed a number of pet peeves she encounters when she visits author web sites.  Are you an author that doesn't have a web site?  You already lose major points with Vey. 

Some of her other complaints include:

An outdated web site, especially one that doesn't list the author's new releases.

A web site that doesn't offer the reader a way of purchasing a book.

A web site with no blog entries or other communication from the author.

A web site with no information about the author.

I'll also add a few more things I think an author web site should have:

An author photo.  Newspapers often contact me looking for an author photo if they can't find an author web site, or a photo of the author on the site.  When newspapers carry stories about an author, they want an author photo, along with the book cover photo.  Make it easy for them and have the photos available as downloads, along with copies of the press release for the book.

A schedule of author book signings.  I'm surprised that many authors overlook this, or don't keep their event schedule up-to-date.

A sample chapter or two of the book.  If your book is already listed at Google Books and has a preview, just post a link so potential readers can browse your book.  

Vey says it best in her blog post:  "To me, being an author is a business and as a business you need people to see the product.  What’s available and what’s coming up at the very least. It doesn’t have to be fancy.  No need for video or anything flashy.  Just something that says I take my job seriously and here’s why you should read my work."



Jennifer Pereyra said...

I completely agree with everything you have written here. I do have one question for you. Why is it when an author has a website do publishers wait until the official release of the book to have it up and running? I would think that it could be a critical element of the pre-release promotion of the author and his/her book; for that matter, a way for authors to start to get connected even during production.

Doreen McGettigan said...

Very good information. I have been working very hard on my web sight and my blog so I hope I am ahead of the game. My production is scheduled to begin in March.

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