Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Message Promoting by Carol Stratton

With the upcoming release of Carol Stratton's debut novel, she's been knee-deep in promotion. Today, she encourages us to think of marketing more as a fun, public service than self-promotion. -- Sandy

Carol: So… you’ve written your first book. And the next step…marketing.

Did you just feel cold chills down your spine?

Marketing is important as a writer. If we’ve spent a year or two creating a book, and no one buys it, that’s a waste of time. Marketing our book insures readers will be able to find our book and purchase it.

“But I hate self-promotion,” you say.

Guilt-free promotion

Well, let’s think of it differently. You and I may have invested a percentage of our life creating something with a good message. Maybe our message might even be life-changing for someone. So really it’s not self-promoting, it’s message promoting.

Does that help?

We aren’t bragging about our work when we market. Instead we are sharing it, hoping to bring joy from a story, or useful information from a nonfiction book that might:

  • Inspire
  • Help
  • Encourage
  • Entertain
  • And add a few laughs.

You do believe in your message, don’t you? Well, then what’s wrong with adding a few of those things to the world?

Finding our helpers.

Once we wrap our mind around marketing as an honorable and necessary activity to sell our book, we need to find those who will support our launch.

I’ve been surprised.

Those friends and family who we think will be right with us on the starting line, sometimes don’t show up. So we can’t be disappointed. Instead, we pay attention to those who have been our Barnabas in our writing. Who comments on your blog? Who has written a review for our book? Who sends us encouraging emails wanting updates on your progress? What other writers have we helped?

Those are the people to invite to our tribe. God doesn’t call us to the difficult assignment alone. He will provide people along the way. If we pay attention, we will find plenty of cheerleaders out there as we first launch our book. I’ve had people I’ve only met once at a conference who are on the front line helping me get out the word.  I believe God sent them to me.


Don’t be afraid to ask. People love the excitement of launching a book especially if they aren’t in the writing world. Keep your launch fun and the enthusiasm will spread. And, you will start to see sales.

For you, what is the hardest part about marketing a book? Were you surprised by anything you hadn't expected? How can you apply Carol's advice to your book? 


Carol G. Stratton has written hundred articles for publications that include InTouch magazine,, and Kyria, and has been interviewed on several programs such as Moody Radio Midday Connection, Army Wife, Joyfully Living Free radio shows and Friends and Neighbors television show. Currently she is a staff writer for Lake Norman Publications. She has a degree in Recreation Therapy and has worked with autistic children in a classroom, an experience that inspired her to write about a woman with an autistic son.

She has spoken at national writing conferences as well as MOPS and other women’s groups about personality temperaments, friendship and encouraging yourself. Her second book, Lake Surrender will be coming out Sept 23rd.

Carol is married and has four grown children and four grandchildren. Currently she and her husband, John, live in Mooresville, North Carolina where she loves to hike and play guitar and mandolin while learning to love liver mush.