November 7, 2017

How to Build Reader Relationships

By Susan Reichert, Editor-in-Chief for Southern Writers Magazine 

All authors want to build a good reader base. The more readers the more sales they will experience.
Sometimes however, we overlook an important key in building a reader base. The key to building a good reader base is communication.

Communication is vital with our readers. We can promote our books, spend all the money we have but if we don’t communicate and listen to our readers, we will fail to have a good reader base.
If you recall, just meeting someone, does not make a friend, in order to become friends you have to spend time together getting to know each other.

Obviously you are not going to be able to meet in person everyone who reads your books and spend individual time with them. But that should not keep you from communicating with them and listening to them.

J. C. Penny said, “Every great business is built on friendship”.

Promoting our books is important and listening to our customers is equally important.

Rather than just telling readers about your books, have conversations with them. Find out what your readers need and want to read and show them your books have what they want and need.

If we have a blog, someone visits our blog, let’s be quick about responding and thanking them for dropping by. Read their comment, what can we say that will start a conversation with them? What questions can we ask so they will want to respond? How can we pull them into discussing what they like to read, even if they mention other authors, that’s okay.  Just say good things about the other author. We are looking to make a friend of this person. The more they respond to us the more it becomes conversation, and odds are they will turn into readers of our books.

We can use our Facebook and make sure we respond there and try to cultivate those people to become friends. Remember, ask questions.

You know most people just want to feel important to someone. To be made to feel they count.

As writers, we know how to do this. Because we too want to feel the words we write count and are important to someone besides us.

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