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Author Success Story: Chip Wagar

Most authors would kill to get 500 visits to their website in a month. But that’s exactly what Chip Wagar accomplished in December on his author website, AnAmericaninVienna.com.

So how did he do it? Here’s what he had to say…

Who built your website? How was the experience?

Smart Author Sites.  It was a great experience. They listened carefully to my ideas and carefully crafted a website that conveyed the essence and spirit of my book.

Which social networking sites do you regularly participate in? Facebook? Twitter? GoodReads? LinkedIn? Any others?

Facebook, Twitter, GoodReads, History News Network, Bees Knees Reviews, Book Page Shoutouts, Deranged Book Lovers,  among others.

How many online followers do you have? How many pageviews have you gotten on your website?

I have over 134 Twitter followers and a similar number of “Likes” on Facebook.  I generally range between 12-40 page views a day on Facebook.

How has your online presence (be it through a website or social networking profiles) increased your visibility/book sales?

I don’t think there is any question that my book’s sales would not be nearly what they are without an on-line presence in this day and age.  I do not advertise in any other way.

What is your “secret” to achieving this success? Were there any tricks or creative ideas (i.e. a contest) that you used?

I try to find users on Facebook or Twitter who share common interests with the themes and times of my book.  For example, genealogy, history, travel and so forth are all good areas for me given the book involves historical fiction.

Is there anything you would do differently if you were starting over again?

Get started sooner on FB and other social media sites.

What is the greatest lesson you’ve learned in the process of building your online presence as an author?

Posting frequently helps a lot in building online presence.

How and where do you promote your website? Is the URL on business cards? Your email signature?

I usually funnel users to my website through social media.

Final words of wisdom for any new authors wondering how to get started….

There are very few “instant” successes among authors, particularly for your first book.  Be patient.  I believe that there are many Pulitzer Prize quality books out there that have not gotten recognition or sales because of flawed marketing efforts.

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