So I was listening to the Selfpublished Podcast last week (love those guys!) and in addition to smiling every time Sean repeated my mantra of: write a great book, let your readers connect with it, repeat, I also caught something he said that was very important but often overlooked.
He said: tactics are different than strategy.
(you can listen to it yourself HERE)
Amen! What a wonderful way to put it! I get so tired of authors fretting and fussing about how to game the system, deploring the end of publishing or cursing the evil giant for changing the game and cutting into their profits…they really, really need to understand the difference between tactics and strategy.
But I fear they don’t. Because clearly they’re putting all their time and energy into playing the short game. They’re missing the big picture, the long tail that means true, lasting success as a ProWriter.
That’s not you, right? Of course not, my readers are too smart for falling for those short-term gimmicks!
That’s what TACTICS are. Short term methods that you try, experimental techniques you measure for effectiveness, opportunities for a quick bump in sales…
In other words, they’re trial and error:
*A short term price drop
*Paid blog mentions
Strategies, on the other hand, are the path to long term success. They’re not about trial and error, they’re about do-ing…over and over again. You don’t have to measure that they work, you know they do because your readers respond to them in ways that show you that your vision and theirs are aligned and they’ve connected with your material.
*Timing your new releases to have the most synergy with your backlist
*Engaging your audience via a newsletter, blog, or social media—not because you “have” to, but because they’re interested in connecting with you for the long term
*Partnerships with fellow professionals: editors, cover artists, formatters, financial advisors, etc.
*Building your brand so that every thing you do communicates your promise to your audience
*Writing more great books
*Organizing your finances and business to give you more time to write more great books
*Managing your time so that you can write more great books (sensing a pattern here?)
Tactics come and go. Don’t sweat it.
Instead, look ahead to what will thrill and excite your readers. Answering that need with your unique stories is the key.
Now, that’s strategizing!