It takes a tremendous amount of energy, patience and foresight to make a career out of Western novels. For every hitmaker, there is a story to be told; and for everyone who flopped, there’s a lesson to be learned. There’s always a story unique to the author—but this article is about an unknown author who last year took the leap to make his books successful. His name is William H. Joiner, Jr.
Much has been made of the fact that Joiner came from nothing to be one of the most consistent sellers on the market. His lack of sales success was not down to a lack of quality product, or a lack of reader interest. It was purely coming down to the fact that nobody knew about his books, at all. When we first met, we both agreed that promotion was necessary. Joiner committed. We then agreed that “The Legend of Jake Jackson” was going to be the book we would concentrate on first.
And that’s what we did. We breathed life into “The Legend of Jake Jackson.” Suddenly an author who hadn’t been read by more than five people suddenly had a growing, breathing hit. The wind inside the hit’s lungs came from keywords, categories, advertising, placement, the three C’s, forewords and all the other ways we generate visibility for a book—but readers were wanting more, more, more…. And those readers were soon fed more Joiner classics—more legends, a series of books about Morgan Porter, a series about Caleb Jacobs and recently a new series about Angel Jacobs. The hits will continue as long as the writing is as good as it can be and the promotion is constant.
Knowing the strength of the product, we knew that we just had to educate readers about the existence of the book. This took advertising, and we targeted folks buying older similar product, Western box set collections, and some of those very popular “Legend” titles. These readers saw the new book and converged en masse on Amazon to purchase this new strong product from Joiner. It rose like a bullet. It became hot because of that capability of educating readers about new product as they buy similar product from established authors.
Keywords came into play here also, as did categories. Using the right keywords and categories, we were able to position the book to make a seemingly impossible climb a fast ascent. This created a surge that supported our attempts at advertising.
The ability to get an endorsement from a major selling author always brings reader interest. Sharing readerships and fanbases is part of the battle with Western books. One reader may be a fan of Cherokee Parks, but you know he would enjoy a book by Robert Hanlon. Bringing readers from one fanbase to a new author is a good way to create excitement on the market.
Categories were very important from this new release from an unknown author. We started with a series of categories that raised awareness and then switched to categories that would help grow his audience. The more Mister Joiner sold, the more solid his ranking. By using the right categories, in conjunction with our promotion, it didn’t take long for us to end up with thirteen books within the top one hundred.
The result? William H. Joiner now has a solid platform that will keep on giving as long as he keeps creating. This has proven to be the case in 2019 and will continue to be the case in 2020. Long as he’s doing his job… the rest of it will fall into place.
When promoting books, you’ve got to look at the whole picture. It’s not about today, or now. It’s about tomorrow. Western novels are powerful sellers, and by smartly making use of categories, keywords and advertising, we managed to really capitalize and energize his readership. By having quality product, we knew that readers would love the book. Maybe you can do the same thing with a little bit of timing, advertising, solid product and some muscle. I think you can! Drop a line below if you have any questions.