I was inspired to post reflection on 2015 after reading a friend/My Book Promo Coach’s post with her own lessons and thoughts from the year that moved on by. You can read LaShaunda Hoffman’s post here, she is the author of Building Relationships Online, a Marketing and Promotion guru and the editor/creator of Shades of Romance Digital Magazine.
- MOVE at Onset. The thoughts that is. There are so many things that I seem to think about, think more about and oh yeah, think about some more, that my results could have, resulted faster had I just moved immediately. I find myself, just now, revisiting the ideas and implementing them. Gee whiz, what was the hold up?
- I can Blog. Who knew? For anyone that thinks another blog is just silly, did you say that about the blog you read this morning, or the book (or books) you recently bought? Your experience and your way of putting the words down/sharing is different, exciting and interesting. People want to hear the way in which you have to say things. Blog to it! When I got my WordPress report at the end of the year, I was elated and excited to do even more writing. I could not believe how many people visited my website or read the blog over the course of 2015.
- Pacing (and restraining) Myself – I like to go, go, go and do, do do. At the end of 2015, I tallied up how much time and money spent on things. The things that I couldn’t get back to, especially the number of online classes that I took or the how-to books I just haven’t read. Not saying you shouldn’t buy books but I was truly amazed and you will be too, when the number is there staring you in the face. This year, beings I have every e-mail from every class, and probably for the next two -three years, I’m going to take time to redo those classes on my own, at my own pace. What’s also sad is that the classes are over and instead of taking the time to really engage in the live versions, I missed the time to develop new relationships, opportunities for cross promotion and the chance to really be present with the other participants, submit the required work and ask questions of the workshop leader.
- Get Ready Faster – I pitched to a total of three editors in the spring and summer of 2015 at separate conferences. Ask me if they received the work when it was time to follow up? No. They haven’t. Just good old fear and at the end of the meetings I couldn’t believe how well those 10 minutes of my life had went AND how ecstatic and enthusiastic each of them sounded over MY idea. Talk about sad. This is truly sad BUT, it won’t be happening again.
- You’ll Only Succeed When You’re Serious. If I didn’t make something, likely the case in number 4 above, (usually) it’s because I wasn’t ready. In 2015 (actually at the end of 2014) I decided to sign up with a professional who was going to motivate me, push me and hold me accountable to the book/writing and promotion goals I’d outlined for myself. It was more money and time then I’d spent and focused on a single aspect of my writing career, but I knew that I was going to have a book out and signing up for the coach helped me to get out there, gain clarity and make progress! Thanks LaShaunda!
- Try it, you might like it (and if you don’t, ask someone who’s better at it than you are, for help)-This is a bit of cheat because it happened this year but I’d started looking into it more, back in 2015. I was on Live Social Media (once) – I’m not a regular on Youtube, Blab or Periscope. I don’t mind you hearing my “radio” voice but I’m a bit shyer about showing my live mug to the world. Blab and Periscope are fairly new mediums of promotion and to say they are taking off is an understatement; but just a few weeks ago, I at least, did one Blab session (that I forgot to hit record or the link would be here to share with you) and found it really wasn’t that bad. I had all of 8 participants and while that’s not stellar, imagine what I or anyone could have if the audience is built over time, if more targeted marketing approaching and if one started doing them more regularly (certainly more than just once)? We’re all self conscious about something, but you can’t let the fact that they are “live” mediums keep you off these platforms. If you get prepared and work on what you’ll say, there is no reason not to embrace this new and burgeoning promotional outlet. I’m doing my first “real”, live #Blab, here with fellow author Beth Barany this coming week.
- Consistency is KEY and I managed as far as my blog, newsletter and social media was concerned, to do it pretty well. I tried to get my newsletter and my blog post out every 15 – 35 days and while that might seem hard, some posts were short. I also noticed that when I just opened the blog post and wrote, I didn’t have time or space to stress/fuss so much over formatting and spell check (not that those things aren’t important), but try writing your blog on the site/platform where you will post. You might get it done a little faster.
- See the good in all – I’m not talking about people but situations. When you’re anything not just a writer but in any field you are in, it’s easy to focus on the parts you love and neglect those parts that you strongly dislike. I did neglect something that I’m now paying for and while I don’t like the other parts, it’s important to keep balance. I can’t afford to let it suffer and whatever your it is, you’ll have to find a way to ensure that even those not-so-fun-parts are still tended you.
- I need to let go. I realized that my priorities are a little out of whack when it came to my writing desires in 2015. I have to get more serious, write faster and really step up my game. In some ways in my focus on my writing/promoting, I realized what I no longer wanted to do and the frustration at NOT writing was when time was spent doing the “have to’s” and while I hate saying no to any request, 2016 will be the year of let go in that I’ll use the year to transition and exit gracefully from some obligations. They key for me will be NOT to pick up any new thing and put it in the (perceived) vacancy’s place. Only writing can go in those new freed-up slots.
- Finally, I can ROCK an event – Truly, EVENTS ARE FOR EVERYONE. I know a lot of people that are just plain afraid of the planning involved, the return on your investment and the logistics of space, food and content, but trust me, there is someone in your circle that would enjoy hosting for you or helping you plan a spectacular event to celebrate YOU and your accomplishments and when done right, they don’t have to cost much of anything except some time and creativity. Live events are a wonderful, often overlooked part of your promotional campaign. I’m already conjuring up my next live bash. I’m sure you’ll see pictures soon and that’s the very thing I’ll be discussing on my #Blab Event this week!
What did you learn from 2015?