Scores of authors use social media to build their platform and many more use it in an attempt to get instant sales. But when a social media presence isn’t garnering additional sales, it could be time to step back and ask yourself if you’re so busy trying to get new followers that you aren’t nurturing your existing followers all the way to the bookstore.

sales funnelWhat the vast majority of authors do on social media is only the first step in the Sales Funnel: increasing awareness of themselves and/or their books. This is a valuable part of the sales process because it creates an ever-widening circle of potential fans; where most go wrong is thinking it’s the only part of sales.

For example, this morning I received an email that brought to my attention two books that I didn’t know existed and which interest me. However, I have so many books queued in my electronic bookshelf that I didn’t purchase either one right away. That’s actually the typical behavior of someone discovering a new author or new book.

So what’s an author to do?


Consider all your followers to be in the top of the sales funnel—aware that you’ve written a book. Your job is to move them through this funnel so they reach the Action Stage—purchasing your book. This is done by creating compelling content that further whets their appetite. The content should preferably be in the form of a blog, which allows you more space to provide an excerpt, a book trailer and interesting pictures related to your story. Tweets, posts and other social media outreach should lead your followers back to the blog, where they can also click through to purchase your book—whether through your own website or an online retailer. With less than 1% of all books published today on bookstore shelves, online purchasing is the best route to take your followers.

What do you blog about?

Consider your audience: they are interested enough to begin following you. What do you think would interest them? Below are a few ideas:

  • The inside story of writing your book
  • Where you find your inspiration
  • The stories behind your plot/subplots: where you got your ideas
  • What makes the characters compelling; why they should care
  • The backdrops in your book
  • The era in which the book takes place
  • Your life as a writer


Write evergreen blogs: blogs that will not go out of date but which you can continue to point to through tweets and posts for years to come. If you haven’t yet read the blog on Blogging as a Hub, click here to view the video and read the details.

For more information on remarketing your followers and moving potential fans through the sales funnel, consider signing up for the 52-Week Marketing Plan. You can begin it at any time, move through it at your own pace, and revisit the tips, tricks and techniques as many times as you’d like. We can even answer your questions. It will place you light-years ahead in terms of successfully marketing and selling your books. Have questions about it? Contact me and I’ll be happy to answer your questions.

p.m.terrell is the internationally acclaimed, award-winning author of more than 21 books in several genres. Her first book was published in 1984 and she became a full-time writer in 2002. She has mentored authors for more than 15 years and is the co-founder of The Book ‘Em Foundation and the founder of the Book ‘Em North Carolina Writers Conference and Book Fair. For more information, visit