5 THINGS SUCCESSFUL WRITERS DO THAT YOU DON’T! *PART 3*

Photo courtesy of Gerd Altmann

Could only five minor adjustments make or break your writing career? Synova thinks so. Here are five things you can implement today to help you succeed. This is part three of a five-part series.

#3 Self Study

Successful authors are continually studying. I know that sounds scary to those who hated school, but it’s easy when you find your perfect way of studying.

Whether you choose to self publish or to be traditionally published, you must learn how to market your book. When you have your manuscript completed, you are only 5% finished. Yes, you read that right. 95% of an author’s work is in marketing.

Hard Truth:

Publishers will NOT market your book for you!

I know it says on their website that they are going to help with marketing, but their idea of helping is uploading it to their website with all the other books they have published. You will not be found. Publishing houses spend their marketing budget on the top 3% of authors. That means unless you have a name like J.K. Rowling, you will not have one dollar spent on your marketing campaign. Trust me on this. I learned it the hard way.

Nowadays, the marketplace is flooded with books, and it’s your job to stand out from the crowd. If you can’t accomplish this, then you will be lost in the sea of want-to-be writers.

Don’t Despair. There’s Hope!

Successful authors know they have to keep an eye on their market. They have found their target audience and are actively studying their interests.

True Crime Example:

As usual, I will give you an example from the true-crime side of my business. I wrote my first book Unorganized Crime and marketed it as the biography of an ex-gangster from Chicago. There is one problem with this. The market has been flooded with Mafia-style books, and now the public is more interested in cold cases, serial killers, and even the Dixie Mafia. The Italian Mafia is slowly becoming “Old News” in the marketplace. I will be rebranding this book and relaunching it after the first of the year.

Constant study is necessary to stay on top of these market trends. Also, you need to be studying delivery methods in the marketplace. Facebook Algorithms are continually changing. Youtube video guidelines are changing. Technology is continually evolving, and a good marketer will change along with them.

I also make it a habit to study the best in my field. Find the leaders in your genre and model their business plan. Don’t copy them, but find out what works for them and use it as inspiration to create your own business plan.

Self-study is the key to success in any field of endeavor, but some people hate book work. I understand that. Luckily, we live in the information age, and we can acquire the knowledge we need in various ways. Videos abound online, and most of what you need to get started, you can find for FREE on Youtube. Other video tutorials have a small cost, but it’s worth it when your business starts to flourish.

Audiobooks are a valuable resource, and you can get a subscription to Amazon’s Audible for less than $15/month. I recently found the Scribd App. It allows its subscribers to have unlimited audiobooks a month for less than $7/month. Look over the various options for audio programs. You can listen to them on your daily commute. Think about it. If you drive minutes to and from work, that is an hour a day that you could be studying. That hour will multiply to a whopping 260 hours a year! Do you realize the average college student only spends approximately 72 hours in the classroom a semester? This is the equivalent of 3.6 college courses, and all it cost was the price of an audiobook.

I listen to audio courses, seminars, and workshops on my earbuds while I clean the house. I particularly hate doing dishes and folding socks. Those chores, of course, have to be repeated daily, so I use my house cleaning time to study. I literally have a pen and notebook by the kitchen sink. I will be scrubbing my pots and pans and then dry my soapy hands to write down some notes.

...But I don’t have time

I hear this all the time, and it’s simply not true. Think about it. If you really want to do something, you will find the time. This sounds harsh, but believe me that I say it with utmost love and appreciation for you. I am a homeschooling mother of two. I do not have a babysitter, and so my children always want something from me. I run a cold case blog that goes out to half a million people each week. I blog twice a week, I have several books published, and I’m currently working on two more. I am going to launch a podcast series soon, and I am also working on two courses for authors. Yes, it is hard to squeeze in time for my study, but I know it is essential for my business, and I find a way.

Whatever you do, find a way to continue your education in your chosen field, and you will find yourself ahead of the pack.


This post is part of a blog series designed to help you with the business side of writing. If you missed Part 1 you can find it here:PART ONE. If you missed Part 2 you can find it here: PART TWO

Look for PART 4 next week. Also, keep your eye out for Synova’s new book Titled Ten Things Successful Writers Do That You Don’t…coming soon!



If you enjoy this content don’t forget to sign up for Synova’s Simply Biz Newsletter and get your copy of her Free Guide: Overcoming Writer’s Block.

Join Synova’s Newsletter here


If you’d like even more help with your writing business, Synova has recently launched a course for aspiring writer’s.

Empowering Aspiring Writer’s:

This course will focus on helping aspiring writers develop their craft and show them how to build a business from their writing.

For more information check out Synova’s store page HERE


For more free tips about writing check out Synova’s Simply Biz Facebook Group

JOIN SYNOVA’S SIMPLY BIZ FACEBOOK GROUP HERE


5 THINGS SUCCESSFUL WRITERS DO THAT YOU DON’T! *PART 2*

Photo courtesy of Gerd Altmann

Could only five minor adjustments make or break your writing career? Synova thinks so. Here are five things you can implement today to help you succeed. This is part two of a five-part series.

#2 Target Audience

Last week we talked about the question of “Who do I write for?” This week we are going to focus on the subject of finding your target audience. In this technological age, there’s an ocean of content floating around the internet. You can literally find an article on everything from toenail polish to astrophysics. If you don’t have a target audience in mind, then your content (books, blogs, etc.) will get swept away in the ocean of information.
How do you avoid getting lost in the shuffle?
The last thing you want to do is work on an excellent article and have no one read it. Picture this; you’ve spent possibly years writing a book only to find no one reads it. It’s heartbreaking and can have a devastating effect on your career.

I found myself ready to give up several years ago. I had written what I thought was a best selling novel only to find I didn’t have any viewership. No one bought the book, and I got such a horrible contract with the publishing house that I was ready to forget writing completely.
Honestly, I would have quit writing if I hadn’t already signed a contract with an ex-gangster.


Yes, you read that right. I was the president of a local writers group and had just gotten my first book published. I stepped away from the group to focus on my marketing and couldn’t wait to travel on my worldwide book tour. It never happened. The contract I received was so horrible. I lost money trying to sell my book.

While I was with the writers’ group, an ex-gangster from Chicago approached one of the members wanting her to write his biography. She didn’t have the time to devote to such a massive project, so she sent him to me. This happened a few months before my first book was published. I eventually agreed to take on the project and signed a contract with him. Little did I know that little piece of paper was all that would keep me from giving up on my dreams.


It took me five years to get his book written. In the meantime, I had another child, a house fire, and moved twice. But, I also had about given up. Other than researching his past, I didn’t write anything. I hated even working on it because it depressed me.

Although it was a dark time, I determined to study and find a better way when my next book was published. By the time Unorganized Crime was released, I had completely rebranded, found my target audience, and my business has taken off ever since. Sure there’s been bumps in the road, but I know I can find a way to achieve my goals.

What changed?

Well, I had found my purpose, and I found my target audience. My target audience for true crime stories is split into different segments. First, there are true crime fans who like to read, watch, and listen to anything to do with true crime stories. My second segment is law enforcement. Current officers, retired officers, and even those college-age kids going for a criminal justice degree tend to love to read true crime stories. The last segment is where I found a deeper purpose.

While I had my purpose in mind when marketing my first true crime book, I was still getting my feet wet in the area of business. I started blogging to generate content for true crime fans but didn’t have a good idea of what to write. That’s when I found a more profound purpose. I started targeting the family members of the victims. I wanted to hear their stories and share them with the world. This was when I became a victims advocate with Missouri Missing.

Now, I had a profound purpose for my writing beyond entertainment. I was giving a voice to the victims that had been forgotten by traditional media.

So, how does all of this relate to your business?

Finding your purpose is first and foremost, and second is finding the perfect audience for your writing. I don’t try to market my true crime books to an audience of theologians. I don’t try to sell my books to teenagers into sci-fi and fantasy. I found a specific group of people that like my content, and I market ONLY to them.


Who likes to read your books? Don’t say your mom! Besides her, who would enjoy your content? Think about that and do a little research on your specific genre. Find a successful author in your field and model them. Watch their websites and see what type of people they target. Build an image of your perfect reader and then find them.

Laser focus on your perfect client and watch where they hang out. No, I’m not saying you need to stalk people. Watch where your target audience hangs out online. Is your perfect reader hanging out on Instagram or Facebook? Are there conventions for your genre? If so, go!

Goodreads is an excellent tool to find out where your target audience hangs out. Use this as a research tool, and you’ll find it helps you in various aspects of your business. Don’t get on there and start spamming people about your books! Instead, get on there and see what everyone is talking about. You don’t want to write an entire series on mermaids if the going trend in your genre is about vampires.
This week I want you to figure out who is your target audience and then find out where they go online.


This post is part of a blog series designed to help you with the business side of writing. If you missed Part 1 you can find it here:PART ONE

Look for PART 3 next week.


If you enjoy this content don’t forget to sign up for Synova’s Simply Biz Newsletter and get your copy of her Free Guide: Overcoming Writer’s Block.

Join Synova’s Newsletter here


If you’d like even more help with your writing business, Synova has recently launched a course for aspiring writer’s.

Empowering Aspiring Writer’s:

This course will focus on helping aspiring writers develop their craft and show them how to build a business from their writing.

For more information check out Synova’s store page HERE


For more free tips about writing check out Synova’s Simply Biz Facebook Group

JOIN SYNOVA’S SIMPLY BIZ FACEBOOK GROUP HERE


5 Things Successful Writers Do That You Don’t! (PART 1)

Photo courtesy of Gerd Altmann

Could only five minor adjustments make or break your writing career? Synova thinks so. Here are five things you can implement today to help you succeed.

Purpose!

Every successful author has a specific purpose behind their writing business. Ask yourself the following questions before you go any farther. If you cannot answer these simple questions, then you aren’t ready for the Big Time. Sorry, I don’t mean to sound harsh, but you have to be set in your own mind before you can convey anything to the world successfully.

#1. Why Do I Write?

#2. Who Do I Write?

#3. When I’m Gone What Will My Children have to tell about my writing career?

#4. Where Do I want to End Up In 5 Years?

Stop and write down these four questions on a sheet of paper. Don’t merely do this in your head. Writing it down will bury the concepts deeper into your mind. Sit back and really think about each response. Then write it down. Keep a copy nearby your workstation. This will help keep you on track.

I know it can be hard to come up with some truly meaningful answers, so I will answer them to give you an example. I have two sides to my business, so I will provide two responses for each question.

#1. Why do I write?

On the True Crime side – I write about cold cases each week to give a voice to the victims of violence. I could probably make more money if I focused on famous cases like Jon Bennett, but instead, I write about obscure cases that have been forgotten by the traditional media. This is the passion and purpose behind my writing. It is what gets me up at 5 am to study my craft. You must have a clear mission to drive you when the going gets tough.

On The Simply Biz side – I write each week to help other authors. For those of you who follow Synova Ink, you can see that I have built a small empire. I have done it all myself. I haven’t hired anyone to run my website, design my graphics, or publish my Youtube videos. I have spent thousands of hours studying, taking seminars, and working through online courses. I know how frustrating it can be not to be turning a profit on your business. I watched as several authors I know gave up on their dreams, and it broke my heart. I don’t want you to let go of the creative spark within you. This is why I write for authors.

**Don’t think that your fiction book cannot serve a purpose! Life is complicated, and 90% of people are needing and longing for entertainment. Why do you think Hollywood is so successful. People are tired, stressed, and discontent. They are looking for a way to escape the hardships of life. Your fiction book can fill this need.**

#2. Who Do I Write For?

This question focuses on your target audience. You really need to get a laser focus on them. Who are they? What do they want? Where do they hang out?

On the True Crime Side – I have a split target audience on the true-crime side of Synova Ink. First, there are the victim’s families. They have a specific set of needs and desires. Separate from those people are my True Crime Fans. I have even split this segment down even further. My target audience is women 35+, college kids going for a degree in criminal justice or law enforcement, and Law Enforcement personnel. Those are my targets, and I know what to provide for each one separately.

On the Simply Biz side – I have also split this into two target groups. I have aspiring writers who have never published a book and don’t know where to start. Then, I also have seasoned writers. Some are frustrated with their business, and some are merely looking for the next insider tip.

Find your target audience and keep them in mind when you write. It makes things so much easier, and it will require less editing later on down the road.

#3. When I’m Gone What Will My Children have to tell about my writing career?

I want my children to see me pull myself up out of depression, financial scarcity, and insecurity to become a world-famous author and entrepreneur.

I want them to tell my grandkids of all the victims’ family members I have helped and how many cases I helped to solve by generating leads for law enforcement.

What will your grandkids hear about your career?

#4. Where Do I want to End Up In 5 Years?

I want to be a New York Times best selling author, an award-winning author coach, and be titled America’s Greatest Crime Writer. What do you want? Make the goals BIG. Small goals aren’t inspiring, and they won’t push you forward.

This post is part of a blog series designed to help you with the business side of writing. Look for PART 2 next week. Also, keep your eye out for Synova’s new book Titled Ten Things Successful Writers Do That You Don’t…coming soon!


If you enjoy this content don’t forget to sign up for Synova’s Simply Biz Newsletter and get your copy of her Free Guide: Overcoming Writer’s Block.

Join Synova’s Newsletter here


If you’d like even more help with your writing business, Synova has recently launched a course for aspiring writer’s.

Empowering Aspiring Writer’s:

This course will focus on helping aspiring writers develop their craft and show them how to build a business from their writing.

For more information check out Synova’s store page HERE


For more free tips about writing check out Synova’s Simply Biz Facebook Group

JOIN SYNOVA’S SIMPLY BIZ FACEBOOK GROUP HERE