Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Christine Rains: Marketing Different Genres

I'm so thrilled to have Christine Rains here today to talk about marketing. Every writer wants to know more about that. If you been any where in the blogosphere the last few weeks, you're run into her Dice & Debauchery tour. Christine is not only a writer, she's a very busy mother and an amazing time management person. I'm not getting the day off. Please check out my post about planning for April Madness over at the A to Z Blogging Challenge Home. How does she get so much done? Here's Christine:

Thank you for hosting me today, Susan. It's a pleasure to be here.

Marketing is one of the most difficult tasks as an author. But marketing several books from different genres? It can be overwhelming. Some days there isn't enough ice cream in the world to make it bearable.

Over the past several weeks, I've been touring for my contemporary erotic romance series, Dice & Debauchery. This is my first adventure with this genre, and I've had to learn new marketing tactics along the way. At the same time, I've had to continue marketing for my other books.

Two different genres with two different audiences.

There are two ways to do this successfully:

1. Use a pen name. Separate your different genre books with distinct identities. Create independent websites, Twitter accounts, and Facebook pages. It's double the work, but it will allow you to build a solid readership in each genre. This is good to do because sometimes when an author crosses genres, she turns some readers off.

I debated using a pen name when I wrote my Dice & Debauchery series. I went back and forth about it for a few months before I decided to take a chance and use my real name. This is why I went with the second marketing strategy.

2. Market the author instead of the books. What do you do best as a writer? Do you have lovely prose with flowing descriptions or are you clever with twisting the plot? Find that one thing that applies to all your stories and use it as a base for your marketing.

My author tagline is: “Twisting the tropes.” In all my stories, I take popular literary devices and themes and turn them on their heads. I love to surprise readers with these unusual twists and turns.

All my books are character focused and contain romances too. So when I went from urban fantasy and paranormal romance to the Dice & Debauchery series, I still was in a similar realm. I understand that not all my readers will want to read erotica, but there are those that do enjoy my stories from both genres. They're all just different aspects of me as a writer.


If you write in different genres, what type of marketing strategy have you employed?

Blurb:
Geek girl Morgan Reid has been to many conventions, but none that had her wishing it would never end.
 Dressed as their characters from the online game Steampunk Quest, Morgan and her best friend meet the other players for the first time in real life. Morgan's attraction to the gorgeous Dean Bradley is immediate, making it difficult to breathe in her tight corset. Even after a few dice shattering orgasms, she doesn't believe this can be anything more than a con fling. But Dean is making her feel things she's only read about in books. Can Morgan let go of her cool-headed logic and allow herself to fall completely for the perfect geek guy?

 About the author:
Christine Rains is a writer, blogger, and geek mom. She's married to her best friend and fellow geek living in south-central Indiana. They have one son who is too smart for his parents' own good and loves to pretend he's Batman. Christine has four degrees which help nothing with motherhood, but make her a great Jeopardy player. When she's not reading or writing, she's going on adventures with her son or watching cheesy movies on Syfy Channel. She's a member of Untethered Realms and S.C.I.F.I. (South Central Indiana Fiction Interface). She has several short stories and novellas published. The Dice & Debauchery series is her first contemporary erotic romance.

Please visit her website  and blog

You can also find Christine on Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, and Goodreads.

 Purchase links:

Thanks, Christine. There's always a lot of discussion about whether to use a pen name or not. You have the best reasons for not that I've heard. What does everyone else think? With all the social media insights, can a writer hide behind a pen name any more? What is a good reason to use one?

43 comments:

  1. Hi Susan - great post by Christine .. and I can certainly see her logic here - market the author ... keeping it simple ... you know who you are it's easier to be you, with your books ... cheers Hilary

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    1. Thanks, Hilary. I don't know if it's more nerve-wracking marketing one's self or the book!

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  2. I think it works well for you to just use your real name. We do all have a certain theme or aspect that runs through all of our stories and we can focus on that.

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    1. Thankfully I had the romance theme to go with. And I know my geek shows through everything I write! :)

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  3. Great advice, Christine. Thanks for sharing from your experience. Your point about marketing/promoting the author more than the book(s) is interesting.

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  4. Thanks for hosting me today, Susan! :)

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    1. Thank you for sharing your insight, Christine. I always feel like there's more I can learn about marketing. I think you're spot on about marketing the name and yours is becoming better known all the time.

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  5. I agree with the approach of either using a pen name or marketing the author as much as the books. :)

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  6. I had never really thought about marketing the author as opposed to/in addition to the work. Definitely something for me to consider. Thanks! :)

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    1. You're welcome, Madeline. I did my research for this one as I wanted to make sure I marketed it right.

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  7. I'm in much the same position. I've used one pen name till now, but the book I'm currently writing is so different, I'm going to try a different pen name.
    Best of luck with your release!

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    1. Thanks, Cate! Good luck with your new book.

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  8. I tend to just use my full name for more adult stuff and Pat Hatt for the kids stuff. Works easy enough that way.

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  9. I decided to create another pen name for my longer, more serious historicals, and keep the original pen name for my shorter, more lighthearted books, and my books set in the U.S. with American-born characters. I just felt my original pen name didn't match the tone of my serious, deep books. To make things easier, I kept my blog url the same and just added the other pen name to my banner, though I recently discovered my banner is cut off on the right on mobile devices!

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    1. That's good reasoning, Carrie-Anne. Oh those tricky mobiles! I've actually never looked at mine on a phone. I think maybe I should make certain it works!

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  10. All great points, Christine. Marketing is huge, and marketing to different audiences can be an ever bigger challenge. Sounds like you got the right idea about this. :)

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    1. Thanks, David! For me, it's the biggest challenge as a writer.

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  11. I think your marketing your different genres very well, Christine. :)

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  12. I think you're doing a great job! I'm having a tough time marketing to different audiences . . . still feels like I'm a total newbie at any of this . . .

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    1. Me too, Tyrean. If only there was some sort of magic formula... and I was a wizard!

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  13. I really like the tip about marketing the author, and not the book. It's a great idea, and one I hadn't heard before. And your tagline is pretty freaking awesome, too :)

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    1. Thanks, Liz! I hope it attracts readers. :)

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  14. I use a pen name because it was pointed out to me by several publishing professional the my real name (Leszczuk) was too hard to say, spell, or remember. Pretty much would kill any hope for word of mouth advertising.

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    1. I've heard that advice given before. I probably would've used a pen name if I had my maiden name still. Sometimes I joke I married my husband for his last name! :)

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  15. Great tip. Marketing one platform is exhausting enough. :) All success to you, Christine.

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  16. I would add, though, maybe a pen name is best if you have end-spectrum genres like, say, erotica and children's picture books. Or horror and romance. If you can link your genres together though, it's okay because there would be overlap in your audience, anyway.

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    1. I agree, Jennifer. I would definitely use a pen name if I wrote children's books. Thanks for your comments.

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  17. I can't even imagine marketing two different platforms. I have a hard enough time managing one. Even though I don't have pen name, I've read often if you write in two different genres you should. Congratulations and best wishes for your continued success!

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    1. Thank you, Donna. I have a tough time with one too! :)

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  18. Such a great post from Christine! Marketing in general is already so, so tough, so I can only imagine how much harder it'd be when you need to promote books from two separate genres...

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    1. Thanks, Heather! It's a little bit crazy. Lucky writers are that way! ;)

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  19. Hello, Christine! Thanks for sharing your thoughts.

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  20. I'm not an author, butit was interesting to read this on how to market. I would imagine if one was marketing something like a musical talent (hubby is a professional musician), one could use some of the same techniques you listed here :)

    betty

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    1. Hi Betty! Great point. It makes sense in that context too.

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  21. I'm following a bit of both strategies, but it can be hard work. :-)

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  22. I'm in the same boat as you, writing in different genres and had to figure out if I wanted to use a pen name or not. After looking around a bit at other authors, I decided on the pen name, but not on creating separate accounts for it. I'm just made a point to add to all my profiles that I write in another genre under my pen name.

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