Three Blunders that Can KILL Your Author Platform

by Garda / Flickr

Image by Garda / Flickr

Happy Tuesday, my peeps! Today I am guest posting for Jane Friedman, contributing editor of Writer’s Digest Magazine, so I hope you will join me there. Here’s a taste…

Three Blunders that Can KILL Your Author Platform

The digital age author has more opportunities than any writer in the history of the written word. But with more opportunities comes more competition, and with more competition comes more work.

Mega-agent Donald Maass will tell you there are only two ways to sell books—a good book and word of mouth, and he is right. Books are not tubes of toothpaste, though many of them sell for less.

Each writer is unique, each product is unique, and thus our marketing approach must appreciate that or we are doomed to fail. Too many social media approaches are a formula to land a writer on a roof with a shotgun and a bottle of scotch. I am a writer first, so my social media approach appreciates that books are not car insurance, and writers are not tacos.

Yes, social media is a wonderful tool for building an author platform. But, unlike Starbucks, we cannot hire college students to create our product. We need to be on social media and still have time left over for the most important “marketing” task of all—writing awesome books.

I am going to point out three major social media time-wasters. If we can avoid these social media tar babies, we will have more time to write brilliant books…..

For the three blunders that can kill your platform, meet me at Jane’s and show her what amazing, awesome and strangely good-looking peeps I have….

I also hope you pick up copies of my best-selling books We Are Not Alone–The Writer’s Guide to Social Media and Are You There, Blog? It’s Me, Writer . Both books are ON SALE for $4.99!!!! And both are recommended by the hottest agents and biggest authors in th biz. My methods teach you how to make building your author platform FUN. Build a platform and still have time left over to write more great books! I am here to change your approach, not your personality.


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    • Christine Fonseca on October 18, 2011 at 7:58 am
    • Reply

    headed right over…

  1. Headed over there, Kristen. But, also wanted to let you know I saved your blog from yesterday in my TBR on-line file. I plan to start at the beginning of your series and read forward.

  2. Lol. No, indeed. This writer is not a taco. Heading over to Jane’s. 🙂

  3. You’re so right about the cutesy names. It may be one thing that bloggers not familiar with marketing principles forget – branding means being able to be found.

    Saw your post on Jane Friedman’s blog, and I agree with you on all points I especially liked your image of the overloaded social media person (tweet, tweet…).

  4. Visited your guest blog and enjoyed it. Great info on social media – thanks.

    1. Thank you!

  5. Started reading Jane’s blog and said, “She’s totally ripping off Kristen!” –until I paid a little attention and looked at the byline. Have tweeted, FB’d and +1’d it. Every writer needs to read this.

    1. LOL…totally made me laugh. Thanks for being so protective *hugs*. You are AWESOME.

    • Liz Harris on October 18, 2011 at 1:40 pm
    • Reply

    What an excellent posting! Many thanks, Kristen, for the good sense you’ve talked.


  6. Kristen, I like the topic of your post but was put off by the bait-and-switch here. You put out the candy but made me feel like I had to work too hard to get it. Careful.

    1. Sorry. Wasn’t the intention. At first I wasn’t going to post, but then I thought it might be a good way to introduce you guys to Jane’s blog. Her blog is one of the best out there for writers.

  7. About to go over to Jane’s and read about the three blunders…looking forward to it!!
    By the way, I think you had an excellent idea here, I would have never known about Jane’s blog if you hadn’t mentioned it, and the link made it super easy to click on and read…In my humble opinion, it wasn’t off putting at all:)
    Have a happy evening,

  8. Just got back from Jane’s blog and want to thank you for pointing me there.
    Joining too many social media sites is disaster in the making because you spread yourself too thin and for what? Quality friends, not quantity is the answer – and doable!
    Thanks Kristen.

  9. Great post! Thanks for the intro. to Jane. Heading there now, with MyWANA gusto…

  10. I did leave a comment on Jane’s blog but it took me four attempts, it wouldn’t let me log in to wordpress so my photo did not appear.

    But great blog, as ever.

  11. Just got back from your guest post. Another good one, Shaman, and just the refresher I needed today. I read a post on another blog that put the terror of numbers back in my heart. You’ve allayed that enough I can go watch Breaking Bad in peace…LOL Here’s the link if you want to read it. I’d love to know your thoughts.

    Muddling Through In the Midwest …:)

    • Debbie Johansson on October 18, 2011 at 9:22 pm
    • Reply

    Thanks for another post full of wonderful advice Kristen. 🙂

  12. Laughed liked a drain when I read this one. Will tweet.
    And then go and sit quietly and ponder… but am I one of the “weird, lonely people”??????

    Thanks for telling us what we need to hear, wrapped up in laughs.

    By the way, Jane Friedman was already on my Gold list. How did that lady get so darned smart? You are on my Gold list too, Kristen. Keep it up. 🙂

    • Roger C. Parker on October 23, 2011 at 4:04 pm
    • Reply

    Great job! I highly recommend reading the whole post on Jane’s site. I’m now a subscriber to your RSS feed.

    1. Thanks Roger!

  1. […] Three Blunders That Can KILL Your Author Platform.  Yikes! So it’s not just about building platform, but using specific tools and avoiding others? Oh yes – and author Kristen Lamb is an expert architect. She’s written several books (We Are Not Alone – The Writer’s Guide to Social Media and Are You There Blog? It’s Me, Writer) and does a smart, funny blog on exactly these topics. I learned about Kristen a week ago and started following her blog; lots of good stuff for those of us stepping uncertainly into the social media pool. […]

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