Reprinted from Phyllis Zimbler Miller’s blog posts at the LA Internet Business Examiner.
If your business is selling used first edition books or new motorcycle tires, if you’re not on the internet you don’t exist for many people – people who might be your local customers. Even if you are not yet on social media such as Twitter and LinkedIn, you must at the very minimum have your own website.
Here’s what Angela Wilson said in a May 5th post on her website www.MarketMyNovel.com:
As a virtual book tour host and book reviewer, I rely heavily on author Web sites to flesh out my reviews, or to create unique questions for a great interview. If an author has a Web site hosted on free sites like Angelfire or Webs.com, I don’t bother. If they don’t have a Web site, they aren’t serious about their writing career. It isn’t worth it to chase information when so many other authors understand the benefits of a good site. I don’t consider Facebook-only authors. Period. And I am not the only reviewer/interviewer who does so.
Is this a harsh assessment? Not in my opinion. Angela is being honest and using something as basic as one’s own website to identify the serious book authors.
And this website evaluation is often the same for people looking up local businesses. If there are two dry cleaners in your neighborhood and only one is on the internet, which one is more likely to get my business? The one whose site enables me to check the dry cleaners days and hours of operation, etc.
And if that site sends me email discount coupons, there’s probably no contest between which of the two dry cleaners I’ll use. (Yes, I’m assuming both do an equally good job of dry cleaning.)
If you don’t have a standalone website for your brand, business or book, learn as much as you can about what makes a good website (hint: it’s not pictures of sunsets unless you’re selling paintings of sunsets) and then get your own website right now.