Book marketing is a challenge for many writers. It’s the last thing many of us want to do after spending hundreds of hours writing and editing. But as time has gone on, author marketing has become necessary. And to our joyous abandon, apps like Story Origin have been developed to help us.
In fact, Story Origin is so good that it’s helped me grow my audience by hundreds. Below, I share with you my insights into how this happens.
In the past, to help you promote a book you had to use lots of individual tools to take care of individual tasks, like group promos or book reviews. Access to communities of writers or paying for premium services also helped writers too.
But something came along that rolled many of those services into one. It made it easier to connect with fellow writers, organise collaborations, and help you grow your following quickly. What I’m talking about is Story Origin.
I signed up for Story Origin a couple of years ago. I can’t remember what provoked me to do so. I think a review from someone I follow. Whoever put me onto it, thank you.
I took my time exploring and getting to grips with all of the features. At the beginning I used it mostly for newsletter swaps, which SO is great for. You simply search for your genre in the dedicated “newsletter swap” area of the site, and you’re presented with a list of writers looking to collaborate, along with details of how many email subscribers they have, their mailing list open rate and its click rate—all vital when working out who to collaborate with.
In one campaign, I used newsletter swaps to promote one of my free books, Tales of Tervia. I connected with a score or so of writers who each shared the free book with their followers, and no word of a lie, the book climbed to #1 in the UK in the fantasy short stories category on Amazon. Other factors helped that too, like ads and Amazon SEO, but the rocket fuel came from Story Origin.
I’ve explained just one way how Story Origin has helped my writing career. It also helps me grow my following, so far, by hundreds.
I’ve achieved this through group promotions. Story Origin allows you to create or join a group promo in which sometimes over a hundred authors club together to collectively give away their books. They may be united by a theme or a genre, like fantasy or crime.
Each author involved then shares that group promotion with their followers. So instead of just one author sharing your book to their following, you could get dozens.
Now competition can be stiff in those promos, especially if there are a lot of books. And there’s no guarantee anyone else will share it—though Story Origin does have ways of addressing this so it doesn’t happen again.
But group promos are so effective at growing an email list, promoting a new book, or finding book reviewers—there are promos for each one—you can’t not use them.
I’ve covered some great features of Story Origin, but they aren’t my favourites. Something I get regular and consistently reliable use from is the delivery of my ebooks to my followers.
Story Origin allows you to upload your ebooks in all formats—MOBI, PDF and EPUB—and create an attractive landing page which you can direct your followers to.
But what I love is that it doesn’t require the person to sign up or register for SO to download your book, and readers are provided with instructions on how to get the file onto their e-reader. I’ve successfully delivered books to thousands of followers using Story Origin’s secure and simple service.
Story Origin is a community for writers to help them with their marketing. Authors collaborate to help build each other’s mailing lists, make sales and find reviewers. It works for ebooks and audiobooks.
The platform itself is simple and easy to use. With just a few clicks of a button you can upload your book and begin collaborating with other authors to promote it and yourself with the world.
If you’re unsure of anything, Story Origin has tutorials on every aspect to help you get up and running.
For many of us, the crux of the matter is the cost. I’m a notorious stinge bag. I don’t spend money on anything if I can get by without. There are few things that I do pay for. One of them is Duotrope, a live directory of publishers and agents for all genres. Check it out.
I pay for Mailchimp, more because I have to but I do think it’s worth it.
And I pay for Story Origin, because it delivers consistently excellent results and provides a service that no other sites do.
And for $10 a month? It’s a no brainer. Even more so when you consider that there are lots of other paid tools out there that only do one or two of the many things Story Origin does. It’s a dozen services rolled into one.
There’s a free package available and I recommend checking that out first if you’re not sure. Explore each of its functions and see if it benefits you. That’s what I did. I stuck with the free option for a long time before going for the monthly one and now I’d never go back.
And if you’re still unsure, you won’t struggle to find some honest Story Origin reviews just like mine.
Richie Billing writes fantasy fiction, historical fiction and stories of a darker nature. His stories often explore real-world issues in fantasy lands.
His short fiction has been published by, amongst others, Kzine, Bewildering Stories, Liquid Imagination, and Far Horizons.
His debut novel, Pariah's Lament, was published by Of Metal and Magic Publishing in March 2021.
Richie hosts the podcast The Fantasy Writers’ Toolshed, a venture inspired by the requests of readers of his critically-acclaimed book, A Fantasy Writers’ Handbook.
When not writing, Richie works as an editor and digital marketer and teaches creative writing both online and offline, as well as speaking at events and conventions like Fantasycon.
Most nights you can find him up into the wee hours scribbling away or watching the NBA.
Find out more at www.richiebilling.com.