5 Reasons Authors Should Market Themselves With Email by Guest Conor Kelly


We love it, we hate it.  We like to complain we get too much of it, but we’re also addicted to our inboxes.  If you’re an author who’d like to build a following, sell more books, and be seen as the go-to person in your industry, then this article will show you how – by using simple emails.

Without further ado, here are 5 reasons why every author should market themselves using email:


Publishing Has Changed

The Internet (and Amazon) have changed the publishing game. Gone are the days of big advances or publishers putting major marketing bucks behind a book launch. In fact, unless you’re already a celebrity of some kind, the expectation is you’ll market your own books, whether you choose to self-publish or not.

So why would you choose to market yourself with email?

Everything’s moving online. Heck, people are even ordering groceries from Amazon now. And online, email is king. No other medium on the World Wide Web is putting more sales into spreadsheets than email. As Forbes reported in June 2018, email marketing is not dead at all.

Not everybody checks Facebook every day, but the average person checks their email five times per day. Email is pervasive, global, and foundational to the way we communicate as a culture. And it will be for the foreseeable future.  

Email has the highest ROI of any form of marketing (4300% according to The Direct Marketing Association). Fully 60% of business owners say email is their most profitable marketing channel. And according to McKinsey, a consultancy, you’re about 40% more likely to get a customer from email than from social media.  

So the real question is what is it costing you not to market yourself with email?


Build Your Audience

There is simply no better way to build a rabid following than with email. While Facebook claims 2 Billion accounts…a full 25% of those are fake. Email, on the other hand, boasts a hefty 6.32 Billion active accounts, making it 5x bigger than Facebook.  

But the #1 reason to build a thriving email list? You OWN your list. It’s yours. You can download that sucker and re-upload it somewhere else. You can communicate with your list in the manner of your choosing. There’s no one who can tell you otherwise. And there’s no one who can take your list away from you.

You don’t own your social media followers.

An email list, especially a responsive one, is an asset. Arguably the best asset you can have.

If you want to establish yourself as a leader, and the go-to person in your niche, the fastest way to do that is by regularly publishing high-quality content to a loyal legion of “fans”. It becomes your “platform” for getting published and selling books, or whatever else you want to sell.


Sell More Books

5 Reasons Authors Should Market Themselves With Email by guest Conor Kelly via @BadRedheadMedia and @NaNoProMo #email #newsletters You can engage, motivate, inspire, and SELL in ways you never could using social media. All of this as a welcome guest in their inbox.

The best analogy I’ve heard for how to do this comes from email marketing great, Matt Furey. He said to think of talk radio hosts like Howard Stern and how they’ve built they’re audiences. Every day (or every week) your subscribers tune in to your “show” because they want the latest. They want to read what you have to say.  

Bottom line, your readers become more loyal to you with every email you send.

Imagine your favorite food is chocolate chip cookies. And every day I show up to your house in the afternoon with one freshly baked, chocolate chip cookie, just how you like it. How quickly are you going to love seeing me and hearing from me? The answer is almost immediately. When you do email marketing the right way, the result for your customers is the same.



Sell More Other Stuff

Are you ready for the best part?  Once you have a throng of loyal subscribers, you can pretty much sell them anything.  They’re already sold on you. In addition to your books, you can offer events, courses, and high-ticket coaching programs.  Whatever you’re passionate about that you also know your followers want.

In this way, you mine the “acres of diamonds” in your backyard. You build out your suite of products and services to dramatically grow your income.  And your marketing dollars stretch further with email. That’s because the relentless “drip marketing” effect nurtures the relationship and improves sales on the “back end”.


Attract Other Marketing Opportunities

Finally, email done well attracts other marketing opportunities.  

I can’t tell you how many times I’ve received referrals, requests for speaking engagements, or created joint venture partnerships, simply because someone on my list forwarded one of my emails.  

The key is to be interesting.  If you’re interesting, you’ll get noticed.  When you get noticed, this will attract opportunities that were never even on your radar.  That’s when the journey gets really fun!

“But Won’t I Annoy People With Too Many Emails?”

If your current emails are simply telling your customers and prospects about promotions and things going in your business, you shouldn’t be sending 1-2x per month, you should never be sending.


Because the best email marketing programs make the emails about the customer, not the business. They speak to their interests, attracting their attention and then gently compel them to buy more of your products and services. It’s a win-win. The customers love reading the emails, and your business wins because every email you send increases profits and revenue.

More than 60% of customers (those 25 or older in particular) would prefer to be contacted by brands via email (Adobe “Email Use 2017 – US Report“, 2018).  It is possible to get people “hooked” on your particular brand of emails. Why not give them their regular dopamine rush?


If you want to grow your status as an author, email is the way to do it. It establishes your positioning and lets you sell more based on the credibility you’re building. But here’s the catch: Copywriting – i.e. writing to sell and persuade – and email marketing are different skill sets than most authors who write content, possess.   

I know plenty of authors who’ll email their list a weekly article or something, but they’re not making many sales. If you have a passion for learning copywriting, I encourage you to pursue it. If not, it’s easier than you think to hire a professional copywriter like me. Sure, the best of us aren’t cheap. But the results are astronomical. Having great copy in your emails and on your sales pages can literally transform your business overnight.

You’re a writer. You get it. Words matter. And high-converting words make all the difference.

Good luck on your email marketing journey. It’s a rewarding one, I promise you.

And if there’s anything I can do to help, it would be my pleasure.


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5 Reasons Authors Should Market Themselves With Email by guest Conor Kelly via @BadRedheadMedia and @NaNoProMo #email #newsletters

Want to win this giveaway? Simply leave a comment WHY below!

All comments must be left prior to midnight on Friday, May 31st, 2019 in order to be eligible to win. Winners for the week announced on Saturday, June 1st.

Good luck!

Conor Kelly


Conor Kelly is a leading copywriter, email marketing specialist, and publisher of the Small Business Marketing newsletter. He also publishes daily email marketing tips on his website at www.ConorKelly.com . He specializes in helping authors, speakers, and coaches sell more books, courses, and high-ticket coaching programs. His emails are read by people all over Canada, The U.S.A., Europe, and Africa.


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  1. McKenna on May 28, 2019 at 5:10 am

    This is definitely something I need to change in the future. I was slow to join the mailing list bandwagon and my list–relatively speaking–is quite small. More people subscribe to my blog than my mailing list–but I post at least once a week to my blog, so I’m hearing what you’re saying.

    I also know I get over 200 emails a day. And I delete 98% of them without opening them. I’ve been reluctant to send out newsletters and emails to my list for that reason alone. But I think the real reason is I don’t believe I have any additional content above and beyond the blog and the rare bit of actual news I have. So content is definitely something I’m going to have to work on.

  2. Rebecca on May 28, 2019 at 10:05 am

    Thanks for sharing! I’m working diligently on the emails I send to my list, and I’m sure John’s Seeds of Success book is chock full of good info. Thanks for the opportunity! Happy day 🙂

  3. Justin Bienvenue on May 28, 2019 at 12:01 pm

    Good article. You talk about the fundamentals of e-mail marketing but there’s a lack of focus on how many times you should be e-mailing and what you should be e-mailing. My big issue are both and there’s not much on that however I get your point of how e-mail should be a prime focus.

    • Rachel Thompson on May 31, 2019 at 8:37 pm

      Hi Justin,

      Conor does go into detail about what you should be emailing – perhaps reading the post again will help you. As for how many times to email, that’s really up to you. Look at the analytics and open rates, and see how responsive people are to what you’re sending them.

      Remember, it’s not about you, it’s about what value you’re offering readers. Hope that helps.

  4. Raiscara Avalon on May 29, 2019 at 6:19 am

    Definitely something to keep in mind as I build my list.

  5. Lexi on May 30, 2019 at 2:09 pm

    I’m actually really excited about email at the moment but want to build on the momentum

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