When you look at other authors who write in your genre or on the same subject matter, you very well may view them as competition. But the purpose of this post is to convince you that those authors aren’t your competitors. They’re your potential allies.
First, when someone has an interest in a subject matter or genre, they don’t usually stick to one author or one book. They like to test the waters and read different viewpoints, different voices. So just because someone chooses to buy someone else’s book, doesn’t mean they won’t buy yours, too.
So that explains why other authors aren’t competition. Now it’s time to explain how they can actually be your allies.
In the world of internet marketing, there’s nothing more valuable than links to your website. Those links help in two different ways:
- They are found by people who are on other websites that cover a similar subject matter — essentially your target audience.
- They help improve your site’s placement on the search engines. The more links there are to your website, the more reputable the site appears to Google, Yahoo, etc…
What better place for a link to your website than from another author’s site? And that author may very well feel the same way.
Enter content sharing.
This can be done in a variety of ways. But the idea is the same. And it benefits both of you. You each offer some valuable site content for the other author’s website. That content, of course, includes a plug of your book and a link to your website. It enhances the site experience for readers who are already familiar with the site, and it helps them find a new author in a genre that’s of interest to them. A win-win.
Here are a few different forms of content sharing…
- Excerpts: This is the simplest way to do it. Just swap segments of your book with another author and offer each on the other one’s website.
- Articles: If you’re a non-fiction author, you may have already written a piece or two on your subject matter. Reach out to similar author websites and offer them the rights to publish your article free of charge (with a link, of course). And ask them for the same. Or write an original article that really suits the needs of the other author’s website.
- Guest Blogging: This is probably the option that I think is most valuable. Form a partnership with another author, and plan to regularly “guest blog” on each other’s websites. Guest blogging can be in the form of an interview with the author, a feature on the author, or just letting him or her post entries on your blog. This keeps both blogs updated, lively, and interesting. It’s great for authors who are sometimes at a loss as to what to blog about. And, again, it gets your name and website out there.
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