For a long time now, people have been engaging in discussions on different networks, websites, social-media channels, and “platforms.” Some have christened this the arrival of Web 2.0, although I don’t love the term. Regardless of your preferred nomenclature (NSFW), silly is the soul who believes that conversations are only taking place on their “approved” channels.
In The Age of the Platform, I underscore the importance of using other platforms as planks in your own. (This is why Google maintains a Twitter page, Amazon sports an official YouTube channel, and the like.) There rationale is quite straightforward: Conversations are taking place everywhere, so why try and control them? Good luck with that. Rather than resist, it’s wise to encourage these conversations. This means paying attention—and responding—to what with others are saying on site such as Facebook, LinkedIn, Google+, Pinterest, and Twitter:
— Philipp Göllner (@philippgoellner) February 28, 2015
If this seems like a great deal of work, you’re right. Still, it’s one of the things that authors need to do to get their messages received (pun intended). It’s fine if you’re not willing to put the time in. Just don’t be surprised if your book doesn’t do very well.
Writing is easy. Marketing is hard.
I’ve said many times that writing a full-length book is far easier than marketing it. For a very long time now, very few writers have been able sit back and let the royalty checks fly in. Steven King or James Patterson are very much the exceptions that prove the rule. No longer can writers count on established channels. It’s a hustle, pure and simple, but it’s an enjoyable one, at least for me.
Go Where the Action Is
This begs the question: Beyond the aforementioned sites, where are people having conversations about books? Amazon is certainly a popular destination. Book reviews sometimes spark interesting debates and more than their fair share of trolls. And then there’s GoodReads, now part of the Amazon family. Authors can create book groups and invite others to discuss their texts, announce events, subscribe to updates, connect with fellow readers, ask for advice, conduct polls, post photos and videos, and more. These are some of the goals with the GoodReads Book Group for Message Not Received.
Based upon the discussions I’ve had with others, it’s evident to me that my new book broaches some important issues around business communication and why it generally sucks. That’s not to say that I have all of the answers. I don’t. Even if I did, though, there’s great value in connecting with others deluged by e-mail, confused by jargon, and frustrated by the state of communications in their organizations.