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Online Book Marketing - Why Most Authors Struggle - Part 1

Aug 3, 2008
A few months ago I started an experiment with a successful group of authors who wanted to learn how to market their books online more effectively.

The thing about this group that made them different is that each and every one of them was already a successful author. They weren't novices -- they knew about how to market and sell their books.

But when I started teaching this course, I quickly realized that almost no one in the group knew even the basic fundamentals of marketing a product or service online. And this is why they were failing.

Now, learning how to market just about anything online isn't rocket science. In fact, it's quite easy. But most authors aren't Internet marketers. So it seems a heck of a lot harder than it actually is.

By the time you finish this article, that's all going to change. Because I'm going to reveal the single most basic and fundamental skill you have to have if you want to sell your books online.

Ready? Let's get started.

Keywords. Everything you ever do online is going to be about keywords. And yes, this is the number one mistake authors make. This is why they try, and fail, to have success online. This is also why many of them -- maybe you're in this group -- have wasted a ton of money on websites that simply don't work.

Let me explain. The Internet "runs" on keywords. Keywords are how Google and the other search engines know what your site is about. It's how they organize every bit of information they have into something that's useful to an Internet user.

Now you may be saying that you know that. And so what? If my book is about gardening, then "gardening" is my keyword, right?

Wrong. It's not as simple as that.

Why? Because your website is never going rank high enough for a general keyword like "gardening" to rank well. There's simply too much competition - more than 85 million pages in Google.

So what can you do? Start digging a little bit deeper. Find keywords that are still related to your book, but that have less competition and give you more of a chance to actually rank within the first 10 or 20 results.

For example, "organic gardening" only has 2 million competitors. "Organic tomato gardening" only has 200,000.

You'll be much more likely to actually appear in Google's results when you're targeting a phrase like "organic tomato gardening" as opposed to something generic like "gardening."

Now, I've simplified this quite a bit. There's a lot more you need to know about choosing keywords, and the enormous impact all of this will have on how successful you are in marketing your books online.

For example, just because a keyword has less competition, it doesn't automatically make it "better." There are other factors to consider, such as relevance to your book's topic, the intent of the searcher entering those keywords into a search engine, and the amount of traffic you can expect to receive from it.

But we'll save that for Part 2. See below for the details. Your education is just beginning!
About the Author
Nearly every author makes the same crucial mistakes when trying to market their books online. Want to know what they are? Get the scoop at my article on online book marketing. And stop by my main online book marketing site -- you'll learn more in 10 minutes there than you've ever learned before.
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