Major booksellers revamping Web 2.0 efforts, Publicity Q&A
Notice anything different lately on the websites of major book retailers Amazon, Barnes & Noble and Borders? Within the last three weeks, all three companies have revamped their websites to be more user-friendly and include fresher content. In an interview with Book Business Magazine, B&N’s CEO Marie Toulantis explained:
“We really wanted to incorporate some more elements of content and community, and make it a little more interactive, a little more fun, a little bit more engaging. So we decided to use some newer technologies, some new Web 2.0 things like AJAX and Flash, to present the books in a more interesting light…So again, making the site more interactive, more engaging, more community, more interaction with authors through various interviews and podcasts and so forth, and adding a social networking aspect in the form of online book clubs where readers and writers can connect directly.”Authors need to follow the lead when it comes to maintaining their own webpages. It’s always a good idea to update content as frequently as possible to give your visitors fresh information and a desire to come back. While podcasting and Flash are great ways to liven up your site, these components aren’t the only ways to keep visitors interested. For the less techno-savvy author, add a comment board to encourage discussion among your readers, include a “Press Room” where you can post new interviews that appear in print or broadcast, and post your upcoming events calendar so your readers know where they can go to meet you in person.
One of our faithful readers, Payton Inkletter recently left us an interesting question:
Q: How do you decide a genre into which your fiction work fits when it appears to validly span two or more?
While genres may seem limiting, they can make your job as an author easier once you understand how they work and how they can help you promote your book. A book genre is a way of classifying books that have similar traits. Some genres are considered their own markets; good examples are sci-fi, romance and thrillers. But the truth is that most books validly span two or more genres. When it comes to pitching your book to the media, you don’t necessarily need to choose one genre to classify your book. The wider your book’s target audience is, the more media-friendly your message will be.