Marketing Your Writing Online: The Art of Thinking Backwards

When authors ask me to help them with their online marketing, they usually open with, “My agent told me I need a Facebook fan page, so I had my son create one for me. But I haven’t posted anything to it. I don’t even know how to use it. Help!”

Most writers struggle to balance the demands of writing and marketing our writing. Unsure about how to woo readers, we use the ‘spray and pray’ marketing method: we create a blog and multiple social media accounts, spray out random updates and pray someone pays attention.

‘Spray and pray’ doesn’t work. I hereby grant you permission to ignore people who insist that you have to be on Facebook / Twitter / Pinterest / LinkedIn / Google+ / YouTube / Instagram.

Instead, choose one network you feel most drawn to. Then “think backwards” by asking yourself these questions:

  1. What do I hope to get out of joining this network?
  2. Who is my ideal target reader, and does my reader hang out at this network?
  3. How will I help people who visit my page?
  4. How will my updates invite two-way conversation?
  5. How often will I publish fresh content?
  6. What is my “time budget” for building relationships on this network?

Rather than joining seven networks and using all of them haphazardly, use one network consistently and strategically. You’ll be happier, and you’ll reap a much better return on your time investment.

About Laura Christianson 2 Articles
Laura Christianson helps everyone from pre-published writers to best-selling authors establish a vibrant online presence. She owns Blogging Bistro, a business that specializes in custom website creation and website education. Laura has authored several books and thousands of articles, and she serves as Marketing Director for West Coast Christian Writers.


  1. I love this message because I am comfortable on some social media venues and not on others. I think it is so important to not be pushed into what is right for others but that we each take a true interanl temperature and stay true to what is right for us. Thank you for the feedback, guidance and advice!

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