ONLINE BOOK MARKETING THAT WORKS – Part VI: Subtly Marketing Your Book to Online Discussion Groups

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During Week I, we talked about sad assumptions and irrational expectations new authors usually have about book sales. We then discussed the dire need for an author to have his OWN website (not a URL controlled by someone else!) and a periodical (ezine/blog) to market their book.

During Week II, we discussed how important it is to offer a free excerpt of your book. We also shared URLs to “free article” websites where you can post your excerpt as an “article.”

During Week III, we talked about posting your free book excerpt on FreeBookExcerpts.com, a free service for everyone, including book lovers. Authors can post excerpts and readers can discuss them.

During Week IV, we cozied up to websites that have a good Google ranking.

Last week, we asked websites, ezines, blogs and magazines to publish an excerpt from our book.

This week, we’re going to meet some new groups of people while subtly marketing our book.

I’m quite a social butterfly online and participating in online discussion groups is something I’d do for fun – if I weren’t so busy promoting my books and publishing books for other authors through Booklocker.com.

There are really only two things you need to ethically promote your book to discussion lists/groups. They are:

1. a sincere willingness to help others
2. a very short signature that subtly promotes your book and that doesn’t give the impression you’re spamming the masses

The only way for me to teach you how to do this is to show you how I’d do this with one of my books. This week, I’ll use my book, The Emergency Divorce Handbook for Women, as an example. Sadly, since so many marriages end in divorce, there is a never-ending source of online discussions for unhappy married people, victims of domestic violence, people involved in ongoing custody disputes, and even people whose children have been kidnapped by their spouse. Before you start to think that I wrote this book to prey on suffering people’s pocketbooks, I need to tell you that I offer the entire ebook as an instant, free download to women who can’t afford to buy a copy. It’s my way of giving back to the community that helped me when I was going through a nasty divorce.

However, YOUR book is not free so we won’t discuss the free part during this exercise, okay? Here we go.

Keywords are topic-specific descriptions (single words and phrases) that generate the results people see when they use a search box on a website. The top five keywords/phrases I use when promoting my divorce book are:

Divorce
Custody
Legal aid
Domestic violence
Protective order

Discussion Groups/Lists are places online where people congregate to discuss a certain topic. There are large websites that host numerous discussion groups/lists.

What I’m going to be looking for online today are my keywords in some of the top online group websites, which are:

(If you want more choices, just type the word