Writing Books - Is There Money in it?

In the marketing arena, one of the messages conveyed is that unless you're a major author with a tremendous amount of sales, you will not get rich from writing books. You may not even be able to make a living.

But, you should still strive to get published because it does open some doors and allows for alternative means of income.

How does an author create a living out of writing?

Well, whether you're in the process of writing a book, in the process of having a book published, or your book is already available for sale, there are a few strategies writers can use to supplement their income, or create a living from writing:

1. Create e-books and offer them for sale.

If you're a fiction writer, write about elements of writing, the process, the writing elements, the pit falls, the publishing process, your marketing strategies, and so on.

Write what you know, if you want to take the easy path. Or, you can research topics you're interested in, or that are known to be money-makers, or other.

2. If you have interests other than the fiction you write, capitalize on them also.

Maybe, you're a great cook, write about cooking. If you have an interest in health, do the research and write about it

For steps 1 and 2, it's easy to create a PDF with images and a cover. You can offer them on your site, or through services such as Kindle, Lulu.com and Smashwords.com.

If you're willing to invest in a Clickbank or JVZoo account, or another of these types of services, you can find affiliates to help you sell your e-books and/or spin off products.

3. Don't forget this ONE essential strategy that all writers/authors should utilize: Magazine articles.

Write articles, research appropriate magazines, and submit, submit, submit. If you don't submit your work, you will not get published. Writing credits create credibility and authority. This helps you sell what you’re offering.

And, as stated above, being published does matter; it opens up doors and opportunities that may not otherwise be open.

4. If you're writing nonfiction, think spin-offs. You can create podcasts, videos, and other formats of your work and sell them right off your website.

5. Look into selling through catalogues and stores.
You’ll have to do your research and possible contact some companies, but it's a viable option for selling your books.

To start, you can check out these sites:


You can also contact the managers or purchasing agents for stores like Target, Cosco, and Walmart.

6. Whether you’re writing fiction or nonfiction, seek out corporations or businesses that may be interested in your topic.

For example: I wrote a bed time story - I could look into children's stores (furniture, clothing, toys, etc.) to see if they'd be interested in buying in bulk to offer the book to their clients for sale or as giveaways.

7. If you're published, offer teleclasses, online classes, DIY courses, or coaching. This is one of those opportunities that will work better if you're published.

8. Promote, Promote, Promote!

Writing isn’t enough, you’ve got to do the marketing to generate visibility and bring traffic to your website.

Wrapping it Up

These are just some of the strategies you can use to generate income from your book writing.

Tip: Remember to be focused and research your target market.

Karen Cioffi is an award-winning author, ghostwriter, and author/writer online platform instructor. .

You can check out Karen’s e-classes through WOW! Women on Writing at:

Revised Reprint from 2010.


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Series Writers: Chart the Details, Part 3

To all a Merry and Blessed Holiday Season
This month concludes my mini-series on series writing. For the first two posts please visit: Is Series Writing for You? and Three Tips on Starting a Series.

The Challenge is in the Details
Begin your series by creating worksheets to keep track of the details. This will help avoid the pitfalls of time spent having to flip back to previous books for small (or large) details that may have escaped you. Preparing your series worksheets isn't much different than keeping track of the details for each of your writing projects. To accomplish this for each individual book project:
  1. Keep a separate notebook for each book.
  2. In each notebook, preferably during the first stage, create a chart of the following important information. This will take time but will be worth it. The information will be at your fingertips to tweak as you go along, and also to use for school visits, your blog, etc.
  • Age group                             
  • Genre
  • Verb tense
  • Point of View 
  • Mood or tone      
  • Setting
  • Time span
  • Character list, role played in your story and profiles
  • Theme
  • List of Scenes or contents of chapters
  • Concept sentence          
  • Why you wrote your book
  • Where your idea came from
  • Research: what you researched, what file it's kept in, sources you've cited
  • Books by other authors that are similar to your book or that you used as models
  • A list of your favorite authors, your favorite books and the authors' bios
Ideas on how to Organize your Series
Keep a separate section or separate notebook if you've created a series. A series organizational chart can contain information similar to the charts for your books.
  • Series title
  • Genre
  • List of characters and how this list changes from book to book
  • How the books tie together
  • How your characters grow and change as the series progresses
  • Series timeline
  • Settings
  • Keep track of the series books you've read and notes you've taken
  • Most important: write down how your series will end
  • Also: keep track of special information pertaining to your story, such as in my MG mystery, the chapter(s) and page numbers of when the ghost appears.
Join the Fun
One of the most fun parts of writing a series for me has been reading popular and well-loved series by other authors.
  • Take notes on the books you've read and on how the series is connected.
  • Note who the mc is and how the mc changes and grows
  • Are there new characters introduced? Which ones stay the same in each book?
What's so intriguing is the difference in how the books are connected from series to series. In the Stepping Stones series of chapter books about ghosts by Marion Dane Bauer, each book has different mc's and characters; the connection is that each book is about a ghost-of-a-different-color: The Blue Ghost, The Green Ghost, The Red Ghost, The Golden Ghost.  And the delightful Princess in Black series by Shannon Hale and Dean Hale, in which sweet Princess Magnolia must handle a monster problem when her glitter-stone ring rings. Out bursts the Princess in Black for her next adventure, which is different in each book.

When I first realized that two of my projects could become series I was intimidated. But, after studying the nature of series writing I've come to realize that planning is key, as it is for the creation of any book, either right from the start or the plans emerge sometime during the revision stage. I plan to avoid as many pitfalls as possible by following the advice of authors who have shared their expertise and experiences. I hope this information will help you, too.

Treasure Chest of Sources on Series Writing

http://www.thecreativepenn.com/2011/11/02/writing-a-series-continuation-issues/http://www.nownovel.com/blog/how-to-write-book-series/ http://www.nownovel.com/blog/how-to-write-a-series-mistakes/http://www.nownovel.com/blog/six-secrets-to-writing-a-series/;http://www.writersdigest.com/editor-blogs/guide-to-literary-agents/some-tips-for-writing-a-series; Writing the Fiction Series: The Complete Guide for Novels and Novellas, by Karen S. Wiesner  

Photo by Linda Wilson

Linda Wilson, a former elementary teacher and ICL graduate, has published over 100 articles for adults and children, and six short stories for children. Recently, she completed Joyce Sweeney's online fiction courses, picture book course and mystery and suspense course. She has currently finished her first book, a mystery/ghost story for 7-11 year-olds, and is in the process of publishing it and moving on to new writing projects. Follow Linda on Facebook.

Writing Skills - Spread Your Wings

Writing has many different genres within the fiction and nonfiction realms. There are children’s, young adult, romance, mystery, fantasy, science fiction, poetry, memoirs, biographies, travel, health, food, magazine articles, business content, and much more.

It seems, most writers start off in one particular genre – with one particular set of skills. Often, they stay there. This may happen for a number of reasons, including:

- The genre is in their comfort zone.
- There’s an unwanted time element involved in learning a new writing style
- Fear stops them from venturing forward
- They just don’t think of the rest of the writing world around them.

Whatever the reason, the end result is that they may be missing out on another form of writing satisfaction and income. With today’s tight market, it only makes sense to take off the blinders and get the peripheral writing vision going.

For writers who are the young children’s or article writing arena, contemplating writing a full length novel may feel overwhelming. It may feel impossible.

This is where you need to take a step back and think ‘simple.’ 

Rather than dismiss a project for fear it’s too big or because it’s out of your realm of expertise, think simple. Write blog posts on the subject, or possibly articles. You can also start with a short story if thinking about writing a novel makes you uneasy . . . maybe draft an outline.

Start small.

Don’t let the enormity of the project stop you—write one page at a time.

This philosophy goes for any new writing area you decide to step into. If the project itself feels too intimidating, think of it as a learning experience with nothing to lose. The new writing skills you learn will offset the time and effort invested.

It’s true that most writers only feel comfortable in one or two particular genres. It’s also true that they may excel in those genres, their areas of expertise. This is a powerful combination that will certainly keep writers from taking off the writing blinders.

But . . .

The writing arena is full of opportunities. Taking the time and effort to develop a new writing style will certainly be an asset in your writing career. If your piece is accepted and published, you will have another writing accomplishment to include in your writer’s resume, as well as another avenue of income.

There’s an expression: nothing ventured, nothing gained. Why not venture forth today and spread your writing wings.

Karen Cioffi is an award-winning author, ghostwriter, and author/writer online platform instructor. Get must-know writing and marketing tips at http://thewritingworld.com

Interested in being a ghostwriter? Check out Karen's new class at WOW! Women on Writing:
Become a Ghostwriter – Start a Money-Making Writing Business


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Are You Using Radio in Your Book Promotion?

By W. Terry Whalin

Terry on a KRKS Radio with Gino Geraci

There are many different methods to tell others about your book. PR Expert Rick Frishman compares author promotion to a three-legged stool. One leg of the stool is reaching print media. Another leg is using the Internet and a final leg is radio. Without all three legs, no stool can be upright. Click this link to explore Rick's publicity teaching in a free teleseminar. Are you using radio to promote your book?

Some authors have self-published and they know about radio but believe this opportunity is only available to authors who publish with well-known traditional houses. Other authors believe they have to hire a publicist or someone to book these interviews. Yes, publicists do an excellent job at booking radio interviews (more details about publicists will be below) but authors can pitch your book directly to producers and radio shows. The key is to learn the details and then be consistently use the powerful tool of radio. While you personally may not listen to the radio, millions of people drive to work every day and listen to these radio programs. Radio is a key way to get exposure for your book (so readers can learn about your book then purchase it).

One of the best examples that I know about the power of radio to sell books is from Alex Carroll. He self-published his book on how to beat speeding tickets called Beat the Cops. Alex has sold 250,000 copies of Beat the Cops on the radio. Not only has Alex succeeded with his own book but he has developed a detailed training course called Radio Publicity. I encourage you to go to his website, watch the videos and learn about this important resource. He gives away several free tools to get you started learning about radio. For many years, I've known Alex Carroll and numerous authors have profited from his teaching.

If your book is Christian, I encourage you to look into working with Don Otis at Veritas Communications. I've known Don for over 20 years and I've been working with Don on the promotion of my Billy Graham book. Because of his connections to radio, Don has booked me on a number of radio programs to talk about Billy Graham. If you follow this link, you can listen to several of my interviews. To learn more about radio, I encourage you to explore the various links on Don's website

PR Expert Don Otis
Recently Don has started a free email newsletter with great tips from his experience. Here is the first issue: Five Ways To Maximize Your Media Interviews. Follow this link to read Don's insights—but also subscribe to his email list and learn from his years in this business.

There is not one path to begin using radio in your work to tell people about your book. Whether you use a publicist or pitch on your own, it is important to be on the radio consistently. Practice makes perfect.

Are you using radio to promote your books? Let me know in the comments below.


Authors Can Harness the Power of Radio. Discover these resources. (ClickToTweet)
W. Terry Whalin is an acquisitions editor at Morgan James Publishing (a NY publisher). He has written for more than 50 magazines and over 60 books for traditional publishers including Jumpstart Your Publishing Dreams. Some of his books have sold over 100,000 copies. His blog, The Writing Life has over 1300 searchable entries. Follow Terry on Twitter (click this link).
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Ghostwriting - The Content Rewriting Gig

As a ghostwriter you will come across a variety of clients that may request your ghostwriting services. One of those clients will be ‘the rewrite client:’

Content rewriting is actually a popular project for a ghostwriter. Whether an individual wants to have his memoir rewritten, or a businessman needs to have his business manuscript rewritten, or a business wants articles rewritten for an affiliate or sister site, the client will provide you with a full manuscript or article and request that you rewrite it for them with the same topic ‘intent’.

Sounds pretty simple right? Well, it’s not as easy as it sounds.

For the individual with the memoir you may receive a manuscript that’s very poorly written. You will have to try to determine what the client means in certain instances and this will take lots of feedback. Content rewriting will also mean you’ll need to spin words while still invoking the client’s voice. And, depending on the individual’s reason for writing the memoir, you may have to advise that ‘getting even’ doesn’t really make for a saleable book.

Then there is the businessman looking into hiring a ghostwriter for his business book that he wants rewritten. Again, you may have poorly written content that you’ll have to sort through. And, you’ll have to strive to keep the client’s voice. You’ll also have to verify all the information.

There’s also rewriting articles. A client in need of your ghostwriting service may be the business or health marketer who needs articles rewritten for a sister or affiliate site. This type of content rewriting is probably word-for-word one of the most difficult, unless you become very proficient at it. Depending on the genre you will need to become acquainted with the language, the keywords, and the business or health topic you’re writing about.

For example: assuming you’re requested to rewrite health articles about allergies, you’ll need to know the particulars about allergies. You’ll need to know about indoor allergies, outdoor allergies, environmental allergies, you get the idea. And, the word “triggers” means those substances that will cause an allergic reaction. But if you’re rewriting an article you may not be able to use the word ‘trigger.’

Rewriting and Duplicate Content Criteria
If you’re wondering why you can’t use a particular word it’s because when rewriting any content for online use, it must meet non-duplication criteria. This means that the rewritten article must be under a particular percentage in regard to duplicate content according to search engine criteria.

Why is this so important in regard to rewriting content?

Simple, Google penalizes page rank if it determines your content is duplicated by other sites.

A great tool to check your duplicate content score is WordsFinder Duplicate Checker and Article Rewrite Comparison. According to this site, your score needs to be below 80 percent or you may be penalized for duplicate content. But, your client may request it be below 70 percent. To be safe, you should always aim for below 70.

If the rewrite duplicate percentage is too high, you have to rewrite it, while keeping it coherent and on topic. You’ll need to get it to that safe percentage. This will most likely mean finding synonyms for a number of words. Take the word ‘strategy’ as an example. You might spin it with policy, plan, technique, or other word that has a very similar meaning.

So, while content rewriting may sound easy, it can be a much more involved ghostwriting project than anticipated. Take this into account when quoting a price.

You can find the WordsFinder tool at:

Karen Cioffi is an award-winning author, ghostwriter, and author/writer online platform instructor. Get must-know writing and marketing tips at http://thewritingworld.com.

Interested in becoming a ghostwriter? Check out Karen's new class at WOW! Women on Writing:
 Become a Ghostwriter – Start a Money-Making Writing Business


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3 Marketing Strategies Geared to Motivate People to Buy

Take the Controls, Own Your Website

 Who Owns Your Website? 

Wouldn’t you rather be the owner and manager of a website for your business?

After growth and stability were established on my artist’s blog, and my skills had developed for managing multiple blogs, I wanted a static website.  A website would present my Bio and Resume of accomplishments as well as display my art for sale.  As I considered the design, I visited many artists’ websites.  I considered ease of layout and available access to information a priority.  My intent was to showcase my art to encourage interest, but I wanted an uncluttered, straightforward appearance.

An artist’s blog is fun and lively with lots of inspiring areas of “discovery”.  But my website required sophistication and structure. 

My husband and several friends worked with website designers to set up their websites.  These designers became the managers of the website with certain controlling actions that only they could execute; thus, multiple headaches for the customer. The business owner couldn’t update or make changes for a majority of strategic items.

With my technical skills, I considered that I was able to design, manage and control my website directly.  I studied the opportunities available, bought books on website design and took an HTML & CSS code computer class.  I evaluated many template setups and talked to a couple of my tech savvy artist friends that had chosen a similar direction for recommendations.

With, my homework done it was time to dive into selecting my host network, ULR name and address, and the template to begin!  I chose a WordPress template and spent several intense days getting my website designed, loaded, and running.  The nerve-racking part was the site is live to the public as soon as you begin–scary thought–so you want the site to look as good as possible right away!  Some may choose to lock the website screen to read “Under Construction”, but I didn’t want to take the risk of locking up any part of my website.  I followed YouTube tutorials to guide me through the process and to cover all the hidden steps efficiently and effectively.
So, who owns my website?  I do!  And you can too!

Resource List:
Content Management Systems

• Top 10 Most Usable CMS by Glen Stansberry.  This post is from 2009 but still helpful.
• WordPress 
• Drupal 
• Joomla 
• Expression Engine
• Tyler Moore  https://www.youtube.com/user/Conutant

Deborah Lyn Stanley is a writer, editor and artist.  She is a retired project manager who now devotes her time to writing, art and caregiving mentally impaired seniors. 

She has independently published a collection of 24 artists’ interviews entitled the Artists Interview Series.  The series was also published as articles for an online news network and on her website: Deborah Lyn Stanley - Writers Blog.  Deborah is published in magazines.  She is a blogger who has managed several group sites including ones she founded.
“Write your best, in your voice, your way!”

Writing the Middle Grade Novel - From Start to Finish - Podcast

Every week I have a new podcast for my series, Writing Tips from the Working Writer's Coach at www.workingwriterscoach.com.

But this week, I thought it might be fun to post the podcast here, so people who aren't familiar with my podcast could sample it.

This week’s episode is Part Three of a three-part series, Writing the Middle Grade Novel – From Start to Finish - it's JUST 6 minutes.

Click to listen to Part One and Part Two first.

In this week’s episode, I offer some tips and tricks for plotting and writing your novel.

Download the study guide here first, so you can take a few notes as you’re listening.

As the Working Writer's Coach, Suzanne Lieurance helps people turn their passion for writing into a lucrative career.

Let her teach you everything you need to know to build your writing career.

A Writer's Inventory

As the year winds down, many people - I think writers, especially - recount the things they have not yet accomplished, rather than celebrate what they have done. 

So many things influence your life and productivity that are out of your control. It's really easy to be accelerating toward the end of the year and wonder what you got done, and get frustrated for not doing enough.

I say, don't be so hard on yourself. If you are on track to accomplish all of your annual goals by the end of the year, that's fabulous. If life got in the way a little too much, take an inventory of all you have accomplished. You will see you have done way more than you think.

1. Make a list of all of your wins for the year off the top of your head. This can include articles, promotions, completed works.

2. Now, give it some thought and come up with more. If you get stuck, ask peers and loved ones ... people who have your back. They'll know.

3. Make a list of all the new people you met this year. Be sure to include a memorable, personal detail.

4. Look through your connections on LinkedIn or Facebook to add to your list.

5. Make a list of all the events you attended this year. Make notes about the ones you liked and the ones you did not, so you have a reference for the future.

6. Look through your calendar to add to your list.

7. Make a list of everything you have written in the last year. Stories, articles, posts, novels, screenplays, non-fiction books. You can even include false starts. Be sure to include a note on your progress or where and when something was published.

8. Look through your computer files to add to your list.

9. Make a list of every adventure you had this year - the good and the bad. This is great fodder for fiction and non-fiction in the future.

10. Look through the list of all you accomplished. And be proud. I am sure you've done some amazing things, even if there are not all you set out to do.

Remember, you have six weeks left to check things off your list and get a few more wins. Don't be discouraged that time goes to fast. Be encouraged byy all you accomplished. And set yourself up to succeed even more.

What do you think? What is your favorite win this year? What do you hope to accomplish by the end of 2016? Please share your thoughts in the comments, so we can celebrate your wins and cheer you on. 

* * *

Debra Eckerling is a writer, editor and project catalyst, as well as founder of Guided Goals and Write On Online, a live and online writers’ support group. 

She is the host of the Guided Goals Podcast and author of Purple Pencil Adventures: Writing Prompts for Kids of All Ages. 

Debra is an editor at Social Media Examiner and a speaker/moderator on the subjects of writing, networking, goal-setting, and social media.

The Power of Video in It's Simplest Form

This is a simple 46 second video, taken on an iPhone. While it's a bit crude, it's hysterical. It makes you feel. This is what marketing is all about - you want to hold that reader's attention. You want to make her smile, maybe even laugh-out-loud.

Think about it. 

If you had a children's picture book about superheroes, wouldn't this be a cute lead-in? Or, some other short, funny or moving video relevant to your book. Videos are powerful and they don't have to be elaborate to be effective.

And, a bonus of video is it will hold the visitor on your site longer. This is great for your website ranking. 

So, next time your planning your book marketing blogging schedule and coming up with blogging ideas, keep these video statistic in mind:

- Video in an email produces a 200-300% increase in click-through rate.
- Including video on a landing page can increase conversion by 80%.
- After watching a video, 64% of people are more likely to buy an product.

Start using video in your blog post today!

For lots more video statistics, go to: http://blog.hubspot.com/marketing/video-marketing-statistics


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The Perfect Gift for Authors is Free!

By Carolyn Howard Johnson    

The Perfect (Very Frugal!) Gift for Authors


Or course you knew I’d say that. We all owe a debt to the publishing industry and its sidekick, the indies. And probably most of us single out at least a couple of people on our holiday lists to give a book to.

But how many of us have an author on our holiday list? Isn’t there something you could give an author—even one you don’t know personally? Even if you have a serious holiday budget you must stick to.

The holidays are a time to let your spirit of giving overcome any reticence you may have about contacting a favorite author. I promise you, there is no gift greater for authors than hearing from a reader. Well, OK. There is one. That is when a reader writes a review for a book without being prompted to do so.

So drop a note to an author, or write a review of that author’s book and post it on a blog or on one of the online bookstores. It’s free and it’s a full-of-love gift.
And here are the easy to do steps to make sure your author gets full benefit of your generous (yes, it is!) gift! Write your review.
  • Write your review.
  • Google your author’s name and go to his or her Web site.
  • You should find a contact feature, perhaps on the About the Author page.
  • Copy your review and then paste it into an e-mail with a quick personal message to the author.
  • Alternatively, you could post your review on your blog. If you do, let your author know with a thank you note and then use that same link to promote your post on Twitter, Facebook, and any other social networks you belong to.
Once you have done this, it becomes easy. If you can, do it one more time with another author, preferably one who writes in a different genre. You have plenty of time before the big December rush!
If giving a review doesn’t get you into the holiday spirit, maybe this will: You are contributing to an industry that provides you with something you love—books!
Carolyn Howard-Johnson is the author of the multi award-winning HowToDoItFrugally series of books for writers. Now in its second edition,  Bookbaby calls her The Frugal Book Promoter a classic.  She is also the author of a novel and several books of poetry including her most recent, Imperfect Echoes. Her agent is shopping her memoir and second novel.  She admits to carrying a pen and notebook wherever she goes and to preferring reading a good newspaper to watching the news.

Book Marketing- Knowledge is Power

No matter what you're into, what niche or industry you're in, knowledge is power.

As a writer, author, and online marketer, I'm always reading, taking courses, and joining pros in their membership groups.

The reason?

Book marketing and content marketing are part of the turbulent marketing waters. 

Keeping up takes work, time, and it can be expensive.

But, what's the alternative?

If you don’t keep your eye on the ball, you’ll fall behind. Your marketing efforts will lose their effectiveness. This will mean less visibility, less authority, less subscribers to your email list, and less sales.

As a business owner (if you’re an author or freelance writer, you’re a business owner), you MUST keep up with what's going on in your industry.

Granted some industries stay steadfast, but even those businesses must market themselves. This means keeping up with changed or new marketing strategies.

Thus, we go back to the title of this post: Knowledge is power.

So, where did this quote originate?

The 'knowledge is power' quote is attributed to Francis Bacon, in his Meditationes Sacrae (1597).

But, Thomas Jefferson is known to have used it at least twice:

Thomas Jefferson to George Ticknor, 25 November 1817
Thomas Jefferson to Joseph Cabell, 22 January 1820

Other interesting quotes on knowledge:

"Today knowledge has power. It controls access to opportunity and advancement."
-Peter Drucker

"There are three principal means of acquiring knowledge . . . observation of nature, reflection, and experimentation. Observation collects facts; reflection combines them; experimentation verifies the result of that combination."
-Denis Diderot

So, keep learning things that will help you move your business forward.

(1) http://www.monticello.org/site/jefferson/knowledge-power-quotation
(2) http://www.brainyquote.com/quotes/topics/topic_knowledge.html

Karen Cioffi is an award-winning author, ghostwriter, and author/writer online platform instructor. Get must-know writing and marketing tips at http://thewritingworld.com 


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3 Marketing Strategies Geared to Motivate People to Buy

The buying process produces potential customer anxiety. This is a fact.

Just about all CTAs (call-to-actions) generate stress.

Something as simple as the wording in your CTA, can increase that stress and it’s your job to take steps to reduce the potential customer’s anxiety. This in turn will increase your conversions.

Conversions in this case relates to getting visitors to actually buy what you’re offering, getting visitors to say YES to your CTA.

Here are 3 Powerful Strategies to Reduce Buyer Anxiety:

1. The CTA Wording

As mentioned, the wording you use in your CTA can increase or decrease buyer anxiety. According to Marketing Experiments, it’s all about the expectation of what your wording produces.

In testing conducted by the marketing group, two CTAs were put to the test. The first was “Start Free Trial.” The second was “Get Started Now.”

Which do you think converted better?

It was “Get Started Now” and the reason is it produced less anxiety because there is NO implied cost. To many, ‘starting a free trial’ conveys an implied cost.

2. Timing of the CTA

Timing is when and where to introduce the CTA on the sales page. In other words, do you put the CTA at the beginning of the conversation, in the middle, or at the end?

For the average marketer, it’s usually a good idea to provide the visitor with focused and persuasive content (information) before introducing the CTA. This will help develop interest and motivation. The information explaining how the product or service will solve the visitor’s problem will encourage him to buy what’s being offered.

3. Offering a Guarantee

For the buyer, one of the most stressful things in the buying process is to think he’ll lose money.

Questions your visitor may think of:

- Is the product high quality?
- Is the cost reasonable for what’s being offered?
- Will the product meet the promises made?
- Will the perceived value meet expectations?
- Is the money I’m going to spend worth it?
- What if it doesn’t help me or I don't like it?

One of the best ways to reduce most of the anxiety related to the buying process is to offer a money-back guarantee, a risk-free guarantee.

The guarantee must be clearly worded. The visitor will need to know exactly what he has to do to get the refund, when he’ll receive the refund, and any other information that will make him feel more comfortable in his decision.

There are five primary elements to a knock-it-out-of-the-park guarantee:

1. The length – you can offer a 5 day, a 7 day, a 30 day, or other refund time limit.

2. The conditions – the refund policy can be conditional. For example, “If you complete Lesson One, including the assignment, and decide this course isn’t for you, I’ll give you a complete refund.”

3. The coverage – you need to make it clear as to exactly what’s covered in the refund. For example, is it just the cost of the product or does it include shipping, handling, and/or other fees.

4. The placement – place the guarantee just below the price and then again after more persuasive content. You might head the additional motivation as, “Still Not Sure?”

5. The process – make it very clear what the customer needs to do to initiate the refund process. For example, she may need to contact your support team or you directly by email.

The article, “How to Craft a Guarantee,” at Digital Marketer provides more information on the first four elements mentioned above.

Using these tips will help you create powerful CTAs that will reduce buyer anxiety.


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