Depending on the source you believe, somewhere around 500,000 new books hit the shelves this year.

What does this mean?

If each book was but an inch thick, and all the books were placed on a single shelf, that shelf would be over 7.8 MILES long. Your book is but one of them. This does not take into consideration all the books out there already. That’s just this past year.

Walk outside tonight. Count every star you can see in the sky. Write down the total number of stars you can see, then take that number times a factor of 200,000. The resulting number is the number of sites competing for your potential buyer’s attention. This number varies widely depending on the source and nobody knows for certain, but it’s somewhere around 400,000,000 sites. That’s 400 million. (Again there is a lot of argument on this point)

We must remember that many of the competing books out there have big money and big marketing and publicity machines backing them up, while many of the competing sites have SEO experts at the helm with huge budgets and years of education, knowledge and experience. Such is your competition.

Sadly, authors who initially hoped they would become more famous are more likely simply becoming more invisible.

This year, if you are serious about your book, you should perhaps get really serious about marketing.

Putting up a nice website, writing a blog, twittering and facebooking, doing a book trailer or a press release and the like, while commendable, are not really going to set you apart, as nearly every single one of those 500,000 authors and companies and 400 million owners of those sites are doing this also. Everybody is doing this. So, what will work?

Developing a laser sharp marketing strategy and marketing plan that will set you apart and create real awareness for you and your book will work. If you are but playing at marketing, you must begin to really work at marketing your book. It is perhaps not necessary to work harder. It is always advisable to work smarter.

What does developing a real book marketing strategic plan involve?
* Developing tightly focused buyer profiles
* Formulating laser sharp branding strategies
* Developing traditional and non-traditional publicity strategies
* Writing keyword optimized, profile specific marketing copy
* Developing an effective media strategy
* Developing a keyword strategy specific to your niche profiles
* Implementing a website optimization strategy for the visitor
* Search engine optimization for the search engines
* Developing effective targeted optimized blogging strategies
* Developing effective social media marketing strategies
* Learning to develop inbound marketing strategies with outbound strategies

Many of these are Internet strategies. Over 70% of your potential buyers now consider the Internet to be not just A choice, but THE FIRST choice when making purchasing decisions. And the points above are but starting points. The strategy must be implemented and you must work that strategy every day. You will need to adjust that strategy as market conditions change, new opportunities are presented and ideas once good become not so good.

Nobody writes a book to become a marketer. People write books because they want to be an author.

However, the term ‘author’ now encompasses the term ‘marketer’. If you do not get serious about marketing, you will be an unknown author.

It is the year 2010. The marketing methods used in the past decade will not work well in this environment.

The market is not a thing – the market is an event and it is an event that changes and morphs and moves and becomes something different every single day. You must not only keep up with these changes, you must stay ahead of them or be left in the dust.

Are you ready to go for it? If so, make a resolution in 2010 to get really serious about marketing.

Don McCauley is a marketing strategist with over 30 years of experience. He helps individuals, small businesses and professionals create low cost publicity and marketing campaigns to increase sales. He demonstrates how anyone can develop a massive marketing and publicity campaign for little or no money by utilizing cutting edge strategic marketing and publicity resources. The goal is alway to produce bottom line results

Don serves as facilitator of the Free Publicity Focus Group. He is an author and currently writes for regional and national print and electronic publications. He serves as host of The Authors Show radio program, a production of He is an Inbound Marketing Certified Professional and is Web CEO University Certified.

Prior to establishing his marketing and publicity consulting business, Don spent many years as a marketing manager and trainer for several large US corporations. He has also personally built three highly successful service businesses from scratch across three different industries.

He spent 8 years as marketing director of a regional corporation. During this time he was responsible for developing, implementing and managing marketing and publicity campaigns.