Yo, Author, You Spamming Me?? Cut it Out!

POSTED ON Jul 13, 2012

Joel Friedlander

Written by Joel Friedlander

Home > Blog > Marketing, Self-Publishing > Yo, Author, You Spamming Me?? Cut it Out!

They arrive almost every day in my inbox. I bet you get them too. Here’s one that arrived today:

Hi – We hope you don’t mind but we’re giving Kent a hand with the launch of his new novel and we thought you might like a sneaky peak!!

Its a great read and I am including a link to the synopsis here.

Yep, it’s another promotion from an author I never heard of, never signed up for, and have no interest in.

Just another day on the internet?

But why? Why do authors continue to spam people they want to attract?

Are authors so desperate they need to conduct business like Nigerian princes looking for a quick $75,000 loan, or that cousin of yours writing from their hotel in London about their lost passport?

How about this one that arrived just the other day?


The Book of Ezekial: A Story of Love and Power is inviting you to join Facebook.

Once you join, you’ll be able to connect with the The Book of Ezekial: A Story of Love and Power Page, along with people you care about and other things that interest you.

The Book of Ezekial: A Story of Love and Power

I don’t know anyone named “The Book of Ezekial,” do you? Who is this?

Social media is supposed to bring a new era of marketing and relating to your readers, one where you:

  • attract engagement
  • foster relationship
  • carry on conversation

What Is SPAM?

Usually, SPAM is described as “unsolicited commercial email” and it’s a real pain in the neck, littering our inboxes with junk we don’t want, didn’t ask for and resent having to spend time with, even if it’s just hitting the “Delete” key.

So why do authors do it?

You can’t really call it marketing, which involves locating communities of interest and communicating with them about your book or the ideas around which it’s built.

Or maybe these authors haven’t heard of the idea of permission marketing, where you engage people and offer something that’s interesting enough that they give you their permission to communicate.

Yep, it’s the permission that’s missing here.

Seth Godin wrote a book on it, and he says:

Permission marketing is the privilege (not the right) of delivering anticipated, personal and relevant messages to people who actually want to get them. It recognizes the new power of the best consumers to ignore marketing. It realizes that treating people with respect is the best way to earn their attention.—Seth’s Blog

I get these pitches all the time and I bet you do, too. I get them whether or not I know the author, and it doesn’t matter to them that I never buy or read the kind of book they are pushing.

It’s almost like these authors thought putting together a real marketing plan was just too much work, so “Let’s just email everybody, you know?”

Here’s my advice: When you’re itching to just let every single person in your email account know you’ve just published a book, DON’T. Try to find the readers who are actually interested.

They congregate somewhere.

They discuss things and you could get involved with those conversations.

Who knows, there might even be a place to mention that, yes, you just published a book on the subject.

But please, authors, don’t spam your friends just because you have their email addresses.

It won’t help.

Photo by CarbonNYC

Joel Friedlander

Written by
Joel Friedlander

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