Build a Fan Base and Sell More Books
August 27, 2014
IT’S A LITTLE KNOWN FACT that every author needs readers in order to survive. It’s also a little known fact that it costs on average five times more to acquire new readers than to retain existing ones. Truth be told, marketing to existing fans increases their trust and commitment, and naturally results in more sales.
The good news is marketing to existing readers need not be expensive or complicated; it simply needs to consist of sincere expressions of your appreciation for their continued business and referrals. Customers like to be acknowledged and appreciated, and any gesture thanking those customers who keep your business afloat is worth the investment.
Here are ten customer appreciation activities to consider for maintaining a loyal fan base and selling more books.
- Wrap up conversations at book signings and other live events by saying, “thank you for buying my book. I hope you enjoy it.”
- Mail your biggest fans a personal, hand-written thank you card and replace your business card with a Starbucks gift card.
- Raffle or giveaway book marks, free newsletters, or other inexpensive gifts at live book readings.
- Publish in your newsletter, blog post, and website a sincere letter of thanksgiving to loyal readers.
- Create a newsletter just for your repeat readers with frequent and helpful information and fun book or character trivia.
- Spotlight book reviews on your website and blog post, thanking reviewers for taking the time to read your book and share their honest remarks.
- Host a private eSale to your biggest fans, offering substantial discounts or free previews with sample book chapters.
- Create a member’s club for your biggest fans and give away a free copy of your eBook or audiobook to anyone who registers.
- Offer digital calendars, books, or gift-cards to readers who sign up for a permission-based email marketing newsletter, allowing you to send them regular emails about your new book or live events.
- Reward your biggest fans for referrals by sending them personalized thank you cards and bookmarks.
The timing of these activities is important. Implement activities that target readers immediately after their purchase, and don’t forget about holidays, birthdays, anniversaries, and the like. Finally, don’t underestimate the role of Social Media vehicles when communicating or implementing customer appreciation activities. Customers who engage with companies or businesses over social media spend 20% – 40% more money with those companies or businesses than other customers.
Plan activities that engage your readers at very touch point of the sales cycle and create value in an effort to build community and bias through engagement. This will result in increased customer loyalty, spending, and referrals – all of which is good for your business!
Please click the book cover image to read more about Kristen Clark and her books.