What’s the most important relationship you have as an author?
It isn’t with your agent.
It isn’t with your editor.
It’s your relationship with your readers. How well do you know them? Do you know what they want from your website?
You have a relationship with them even if you don’t have a book published. If you are a writer, you have readers. Don’t think that this article is just for best-selling authors. It’s for you.
Your readers love you. It’s time for you to woo them.
Your fans are the ones that know your secrets. The’ve read all your blog posts. They don’t always disagree with you. But they believe in you enough that they keep coming back to read what you have to say. They are the ones who buy your books and share their opinion of you with the world. You need them in your life. Don’t take them for granted.
Building a relationship with your reader is just like building any other relationship. It takes time, hard work, and a spark.
1. Get personal
Build trust by revealing more about yourself. That’s how you build relationships in real life. It’s no different online. People want to know that you are real. Just remember that when you share things online, they can be shared, liked, and tweeted to the world. Make sure your personal tidbit is something you don’t mind everyone knowing.
2. Praise them publicly
What do you like about them? What makes them so awesome (and being your reader does not count). Publicly praise them on your website. Michael Hyatt does this beautifully on his blog. Every month, he recognizes the top posts and commenters on his blog. People love being recognized. Your readers are no exception.
3. Invite them to tell about themselves
Do you have an ongoing series that your fans could write for? Don’t play hide-and-seek with your readers. Get to know them. Ask them to share their stories on your blog. It will build your relationship with them. How can you invite them to tell their story?
4. Pursue them by reading their blogs
Do you read what your readers write? Take the time to get to know them. Relationships take work from both people. Invest in them. Read their blogs. Get to know their hopes, dreams, and fears. If you were dating, wouldn’t you want to get to know the other person? It’s the same thing.
5. Give them a gift!
When you are dating someone, you shower them with gifts to express your affection. Don’t buy them flowers and chocolate. Give them free copies of your books, a special e-book, or some sort of special gift that says “I’m thinking of you and I value you.” What would you want from your favorite author?
How do you woo your readers? Do you have an action plan? If you have questions, schedule a free 15-minute consultation. We’ll coach you on how to woo your readers.
Thank you, Caitlin~
That was really interesting!
Glad you liked it, Shiloh! Time to start wooing readers!
Excellent post, Caitlin! You’re absolutely right on so many levels here, and I love the tips you shared. Thank you!
Thanks, Joanna. Would you add any other tips to the list?
Great tips, Caitlin!
A couple there I hadn’t thought of. Thanks!