Toolbox Thursday: Free Tools to Boost Writer Productivity & Profit
Melinda T. Falgoust
So. You've written the Great American Novel, but now what? Most seasoned authors will tell you that marketing is the name of the game. Much as we would love our little darlings to fly off the bookshelves all on their own, one has to face the harsh reality: "Books don't sell books. People sell books." It stands to reason then that as authors, we need to get out there, put our shiny faces in front of the masses, and give our best Ron Popei impression. (The HSN presenter used his childish sense of enthusiasm to once sell over a million dollars of kitchen appliances in one hour). Now, we might be hard-pressed to try and sell one million dollars worth of "ABC with Arnie the Alligator" in one sitting, but there are a number of tools available than CAN help the go-getting author get the most bang for her buck when hitting the open road.
I recommend Free Map Tools to help create an effective marketing strategy. This free tool allows you to input a specific zip code of a location you may be visiting soon and pinpoint all zip codes within a set radius. [FIGURE 1] For example, let's say you will be visiting the Shenandoah region of Pennsylvania to do an author event at a local library or bookstore. Why not increase the impact of your event by sending a press release to all media and schools that fall within a 30 miles radius of your event?
The tool also generates a list of the same zip codes. [FIGURE 2]
A complementary list of cities, including how far they are from your central location, is also created by the tool. [FIGURE 3]
You can see how obtaining this type of information quickly, readily, and for FREE can greatly aid authors in planning an effective marketing campaign to increase their brand awareness and bolster sales. There are several other features available with this tool, including United Kingdom postcode search and radius tools. In short, Free Map Tools is a powerful tool for an author's grass roots marketing strategy. Come back next Thursday when we use Free Map Tools in conjunction with several other free gems to boost your sales.