The Smarty Pants Book Marketing Podcast

Award-winning marketer Chris Syme and bestselling indie author Becca Syme give self-published authors the latest social media tips and strategies that sell more books and build loyal fans. Join them as they interview top book marketing experts, showcase successful indie authors, and offer tips from their own successes on this weekly show.
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Now displaying: 2017
May 28, 2017

In this episode Chris and Becca talk about the three marketing goals that every author needs.

Show Notes & Links:

-Why do authors need marketing goals, anyway?

-How to get new readers to discover your books?

-Why authors tend to skip discovery marketing and just concentrate on sales

-The three main components authors need to sell books.

-How does building fan loyalty help you sell more books?


-Preorder Chris' new book, The Newbie's Guide To Sell More Books With Less Marketing for just 99 cents until June 9. The books includes a free online course. Get your copy here. 

-Link to the podcast on author platform levels.

-A review of the 80-20 Content Rule: 80% of posts must give value, 20% can be used to sell

-Bryan Cohen's podcast on how to put together an email welcome sequence

-Roni Loren's podcast on fan loyalty

-Join the SMART Marketing for Authors Facebook Group

How to leave a review on iTunes

May 20, 2017

In this episode K-Lytics founder Alex Newton shows authors how to make sure your book will succeed before it's published.

Show Notes and Links: 

-How is K-Lytics different from other keyword-type tools out there?

-How you can know if your book has the potential to sell before you publish it.

-How to pick the right genre and sub-genre for your book's success?

-What kinds of meta data will help you sell more books?

-Why your marketing budget can dictate what genre your book belongs in.

-If you’re considering writing in a new genre, what should you do to insure that your books will reach those readers?

Click here to see how K-Lytics works for authors. Watch the video. 

Check out the genre market research reports that K-Lytics offers to authors. There are two pages so make sure you click "Older posts" to see all the reports.

The preorder for Chris' new book, The Newbie's Guide To Sell More Books With Less Marketing will be available this week. Make sure you get an email notification so you don't miss the 99-cent preorder. Sign up for a notification here.

If you have a question or comment about this episode be sure and post it on the podcast page of our website at Let's get the conversation started!

May 8, 2017

In today's episode author and entrepreneur Bryan Cohen previews The Selling Trilogy, an innovative set of strategies to help authors sell books more effectively. 

Show Notes & Links:

-Why good copywriting sells more books (and the data to prove it!)

-Good copywriting starts with a hook that leads people to read the next line.

-The characteristics of a good hook.

-Should authors be using review snippets in their books descriptions? 

-How to get people into your book sales funnel so they ultimately became raving fans.

-Bryan shares his ideal email welcoming sequence that turns new subscribers into loyal and engaged readers.

-Why you should edit your marketing like you edit your book

A personal message from Bryan:

It’s unlikely that one trick is going to make all the difference for your author career.

But when you’re set up with a strong foundation, you increase the chances you’ll earn more money in the long-term.

As a bestselling author, I recently passed half a million downloads of my own books and I've helped hundreds of other authors spin their own success stories.

By helping them nail the “forgotten essentials of selling more books,” I've contributed to authors making the USA Today bestseller list, hitting the Top 100 on Amazon, and selling thousands of books. I can help you too.

Join me on Tuesday, May 16th at 3pm Eastern for a free webinar.

Click here to be a part of the event!

I hope to see you there!

Link to sign up for an email notice for the limited time 99 cent preorder for Chris' new book, The Newbie's Guide To Selling More Books With Less Marketing. Be the first to know by clicking here

May 1, 2017

In episode 45,  Chris and Becca debunk three of the biggest book marketing myths authors believe.

Show Notes & Links:

-Chris is the good cop, Becca is the bad cop. 

-Reasons why authors need to be careful when they copy the promotions of other authors and expect the same results

-Is it true that once you get a traditional publishing contract you never have to do any marketing (whew).

-Why the traditional publishing sales cycle is not geared to long term sales

-What publishers cannot do: forge relationships between authors and readers.

-Just because social media doesn't sell as many books as Amazon does not mean it doesn't sell books.

-Why authors should not waste their time on social media channels that are not wired to sell products. 

-Why you should separate your personal social media time from your book marketing social media time.


-Be sure and join the private Facebook group: SMART Marketing For Authors here:

-Link to Chris' book Sell More Books With Less Social Media (Amazon)

Apr 22, 2017

In today's episode guest co-host and high performance coach Nina Amir gives nonfiction writers some key tips on getting their books to market.

Show Notes & Links:

Questions to ask yourself to make sure your book idea addresses a real need.

-Steps to take before turning your idea into a book.

-How a book can help you develop expertise and credibility.

-Why nonfiction writers need a blog and why a website without a blog is like just a brochure in cyberspace.


-Sign up for Nina's email list (highly recommend) at

-Nina's high performance coaching site for writers:

-Sign up for your free coaching session here:

-See Nina's books here

-A link to Chris' current free online classes

-Sign up for Chris' free weekly insider book marketing tips here

Apr 13, 2017
In this episode, Chris and guest co-host Anne Janzer discuss the pros and cons of Pronoun, the new ebook distribution venue from Macmillan Publishing and why indies may want to take a look.
Show Notes & Links:
-What is Pronoun and how is it different from Amazon?
-What royalties will I get on my books on Pronoun?
-Services and data that Pronoun provides to authors.
-How you can get data about your books and not have a book listed on Pronoun.
-How is Pronoun able to give a 70% royalty on all books?
-How do I get paid?
-Is Pronoun easy to use?
-Link to Anne's book page on Pronoun:
Note that the Amazon link works even though Pronoun did not publish the Kindle book. Also, if you scroll down there are links to paperbacks as well.
-Anne's author page on Pronoun:
-Link to Anne's website:
-Link to join the SMART Marketing For Authors private Facebook group
If you liked the podcast, please consider sharing it and leaving a review on iTunes. You can ask a question or comment on this week's episode at
Apr 9, 2017

In this episode, Chris and Becca discuss how to overcome the challenge to write faster and produce more good books--no matter who you are. Becca answers questions about her successful online class, Write Better Faster and how authors can stamp out "attention residue" to get more words on the page.

Show Notes and Links:

-What stands in the way of authors being able to write more books?

-Why "writing faster" is a relative term but is possible for everyone.

-Why it's so important to Write First.

-How to overcome the attention residue that constricts our maximum productivity.

-What authors can do to avoid getting caught in the Loop of Distraction.

Link to Deep Work by Cal Newport

Link to the article on why attention residue is ruining your ability to concentrate.

Link to Becca's course, Write Better Faster, and class registration.

Be sure and go to to continue the conversation. See you there! 

Apr 1, 2017

In this Learning Lab episode, Chris and Becca host Honoree Corder and Brian Meeks as they discuss why getting a grip on data will equate into more money in your pocket. The lab is about an hour long.

Links & Show Notes:

-What is ROI and why do authors need to understand it?

-Why being afraid of the unknown will keep you from making more money.

-How data can help you sell more books.

-Why feeling overwhelmed by data is often the first step to learning.

-Why a $20 book promotion is more expensive than a $1000 Book Bub ad in terms of return value.

-How to figure out if your ad is cost effective.

-Why having the right mindset will help you sell more books.

-How better book descriptions can make you more money.


-Get your copy of The Prosperous Writer’s Guide to Making More Money here.

-Get in on the Kindle Countdown Deal for Chris’ book SMART Social Media For Authors here.

-Four copywriting book recommendations:


Three Facebook groups you should join to get answers about your book marketing:


  1. The Prosperous Writers Mastermind (Honoree Corder)
  2. Smart Marketing for Authors (Chris Syme)
  3. Brian Meeks Amazon Marketing Services Lab Group. This is a beta group for Brian’s new book on Amazon Marketing Services ads. If you’re interested in taking part in a research project and learning more about how to put AMS ads together, Brian has a closed group on Facebook you can join. Part of the buy-in of being in the group is consenting to be part of a control group that buys a copy of his new book to test some points of data on Amazon. This group is specifically about Amazon Marketing Services. Here is the link to join.
Mar 31, 2017

Show Notes, News & Links:

In case you missed part one of this series, The 3 Cardinal Rules of Book Promotion, access here.

-Access the learning tool here for this episode. It’s the same as last week’s link but there are two new tools there you will need for this episode.

-Review of last week’s part one: the three cardinal rules of book promotion.

-Learn the six unique stages of the buying process (The Sales Funnel)

-Find out which social media channels work the best to find new readers and sell more books.

-What part of the sales funnel is social media the strongest in?

-Why different promotions work better at different stages of the funnel.

-How your content helps move people through the sales funnel.

-How to help readers find out more about your books.

-Why it matters if social media channels offer tools to help you sell your books

-Why YouTube, LinkedIn (especially for fiction), and Twitter are not that great for selling books.

-Get into Chris’ premium online course, Mastering Book Marketing For Authors now and get the new version of the course for free. See the course description and info here.

-Stay tuned for registration information for the spring 2017 version of Becca’s class Write Better Faster.

Mar 27, 2017

The third installment of our three-part series on how to to find the best book promotions to sell your books. 

Show Notes & Links:

- Two guidelines you need before you set out to buy a book promotion.

-A list of the items you need to research before you buy a promotion and a copy of the Book Promotion Value Index. The list is in the link to tools and resources for the series here.

Catch up by listening to the first two episodes in the series here (38 and 39).

In this episode:

-We start with a couple recent news items that concern authors and book marketing

-How to match a potential book promotion to your marketing goal--all promotions are not created equal.

-Two guidelines you need to start with before you buy a promotion

-A list of items to research before you buy (on resources page listed above)

-Why Fiverr might not be the best place to buy book marketing promotions

-A preview of next weeks episode with Honoree Corder and Brian Meeks

-The difference between promotions that offer reach and those that increase engagement.

-An explanation of the Book Promotion Value Index (link on resource page above)

Be sure and share the episode with author friends on your Facebook page and in Facebook author forum pages. Thanks much!

Mar 12, 2017

In this episode Chris explains the three cardinal rules of book promotions that will help insure every promotion you run hits the mark.

Show Notes & Links:

-The Three Cardinal Rules of Book Promotions (ignore them at your own peril):

  1. When choosing a book promotion always consider value before cost.
  2. If you copy what another author does, you may not get the same results.
  3. You can get success with a free book promotion but sometimes you have to spend money to make money.

-Before you set out to copy another author's promotion always compare these two sets of data markers:

  1.  Basic data markers of comparison:
    1. Audience potential reach
    2. Social media engagement rates
    3. Other author's platform level
  2. Data markers of the promotion you want to copy:
    1. Genre
    2. Goal of the promotion
    3. Budget


Examples of good data driven marketing solution books:

-Chris' closed Facebook group, SMART Marketing for Authors

-Chris' premium online course, Mastering Online Book Marketing for Authors

-Book Promotion Value Matrix and Data Markers on

-Podcast episode 30: Author Platform Levels

-Podcast episode 37: Roni Loren on Building Loyal Fan Groups

-Link to comment on question of the week




Mar 6, 2017

In the episode, NY Times bestselling romance author Roni Loren shares her secrets on how to build raving fans with Facebook groups.

Show Notes & Links:

-Why traditionally published authors have to build their own fan base.

-How thinking like a reader can help help you relate to fans.

-Your best social media content starts with what you, as a reader, share in common with your fans.

-How to overcome being an introvert and reaching out to fans.

-Why book reviews are the best way to sell books and how to do it well.

-Hear Roni's non-traditional approach to newsletters.

Link to Roni's Facebook page:

-Link to Roni's Facebook fan group, Fearless Romantics: be sure and read the group description:

-Link to Roni's website:

Link to Roni's Amazon Author page 



Feb 25, 2017

In this week's episode author Chris Fox shares his expertise on the Amazon algorithm and how authors can train Amazon to help them sell books.

Show Notes and Links:

-How iBooks and other bookstores sell differently than Amazon.

-Find out when is a good time to run book promotions to get the maximum lift on Amazon.

-The importance of your "Also Boughts" section of your book sales page during the first 60 days of its launch.

-Why email lists from curated sites like InstaFreebie may not be best to use for your book launch.

-Why cost is not the biggest barrier keeping readers fro buying you books.

-A discussion of reader magnets and better options than perma-free books.

-Why Amazon is not your employer.

-Why it's important early on to sell books to the right readers and who they are.

-Find Chris' fiction and nonfiction books here:

-The Chris Fox YouTube channel with lots of tutorials for authors: 

-Chris Fox's latest book, Six Figure Author--click here.

Feb 19, 2017

In this episode Chris answers the question, do you really need a Facebook group. for the majority of authors, that answer is no. Chris will walk you through the differences of pages and groups and the specific purposes of each.

Show Notes & Links:

-A review of author platform levels and examples of appropriate strategies for each from episode number 31.

-What is FOMO? The fear of missing out--something we are dedicated to stamping out here on the Smarty Pants Book Marketing Podcast.

-Facebook help for setting up groups: Click here

A link to information on my premium class on how to sell more books with social media and increase engagement: Click here.

A link to the questions you need to ask yourself before you start a Facebook group. Click here

Feb 11, 2017

In this week’s episode Chris and guest co-host author Michael Anderle discuss the process of hacking book marketing methods to match your goals and skills. 

Show Notes & Links 

-How and why Michael released his first five-book series in 6 weeks

-How Michael found his target reader 

-Favorite quote on writing fast: “Writing fast isn’t something you can bank on because if your books suck, you’re just going to put out sucky books real fast.”

-Why authors need to find out what makes up their mountain. Why are you writing?

-Testing the marketing process with short stories and Book Zero.

20Booksto50K Facebook group: Click here.

Michael’s Kurtherian Gambit Books Facebook page: Click here.

Link to Chris’ latest book w/free online class, Sell More Books With Less Social Media: Click here. The book is also in Kindle Unlimited.

Feb 4, 2017

In this episode Chris and guest co-host Dave Chesson discuss the importance of keywords in book sales.

Show Notes & Links:

-Meet Kindlepreneur founder Dave Chesson and hear his definition of personal success. 

-Why you need to find out which keywords people are actually searching. They may not be the ones you're thinking of.

-Why you need to choose keywords with low competition where you can rank high.

-Why you need to research your keywords before you write your book

-Why using common genre keywords like "science fiction" probably won't help you get found

-Why book categories are not as important as keywords for discovery

-How to find out what the competition is for keywords you are considering

Kindlepreneur website and link to KDP Rocket tool:

Dave Chesson contact information:

Dave's blog:

If you like the podcast, consider leaving a review on iTunes or share it with your author friends. Here's a post from our friend Stephen Campbell on how to leave a review on iTunes:

Jan 30, 2017

In this episode Chris and Becca talk about the concept of fitting your writing strategies to how your brain is wired: how to write better faster. Becca talks about her background coaching authors and organizations in how to find their best strategic fit to accomplish their goals by discovering how their brain is wired to achieve success. Becca also talks about her upcoming online class with the Margie Lawson Writing Academy and how listeners can participate in the Write Better Faster class.

Show Notes and Links:

-What does writer better faster mean?

-How finding your own writing strengths helps you discover your best path to success.

-Why copying other people's writing goals and strategies can actually hinder your success as an author.

-Why FOMO is not a good motivator.

-For more information on Becca's Write Better Faster class, click here. Class starts Feb. 1 but late registrations are welcome. Students get one-on-one coaching with the class.

Join the SMART Marketing For Authors Facebook group and find a community of authors sharing their book marketing successes and challenges.

Answer our question of the week at How does FOMO influence your writing strategy or isn't it a factor for you?

Jan 23, 2017


In this episode Chris and Becca tackle appropriate and budget-friendly marketing strategies for authors at various stages (or platform levels) in their author careers. 

Show Notes & Links:

-Review of the platform levels for fiction and nonfiction authors.

-Introduction of the proper book marketing strategies for levels one and two fiction writers.

-When you need to start spending money on marketing

-What are the two things you need to spend money on before marketing?

-What does your skill level have to do with how you can market your books

-Why authors at all levels need to network with other authors and why you should start early in your career

-What if you're a tweener? You have skills at two different levels. How should that change what you do?

-Why appropriate marketing strategies give you more time to write.

-Link to Chris' free email marketing class (you'll have to set up a free account on Teachable to take the class:

-Link to the graphic tool on platform levels from last week's episode

-Link to vetted book marketing resource for authors 

-Link to Becca's Write Better Faster class

-Last week to get Chris' new book Sell More Books With Less Social Media plus free online class for just 99 cents. Click here.

Question of the Week: Go to and give us a piece of your mind on the following question: What platform level are you and which of the marketing suggestions at your level are you struggling with?

Jan 16, 2017

Show Notes and Links:

Download the free tool for this episode here


In this episode, we’ll talk about:


-Two reasons why your books are not selling well.

-Does your marketing have platform confusion?

-The four markers that measure platform levels.

-The four platform levels of fiction writers.

-The three platform levels of fiction writers.

-Why writing fast turbocharges your platform building process.


Be sure and answer the question of the week at :

What is your biggest platform challenge? Skills, budget, time, or just needing to publish more books?

Get Sell More Books With Less Social Media –plus – free online course for just 99 cents until the end of January here.  

Honoree Corder’s new book: You Must Write A Book

Jan 9, 2017

Show Notes & Links:


-Three reasons why you should start building your platform before you publish your first book


-Tips to start building your platform before first book comes out.

            -build an author network

            -generosity builds reciprocity

            -get the right domain name for your website

            -why the number of Facebook fans you have at first is not important

            -prepare, plan, and then build before you launch 

Sign up for my weekly newsletter for chance at a free book bundle every week in January

Joanna Penn posts on how to build an author website:

Link to free email marketing basics course from SMART Marketing for Authors 

Link to SMART Marketing for Authors Closed Facebook group

Link to Resources Page for self-published authors from Chris’ website 

Link to K-Boards (Forum for self-published authors on all things Amazon and more) 

Question of the week: (answer in the comments at

What is the most challenging part of building an author platform?

Jan 2, 2017


-New and improved podcast format for 2017 - We are focused!

-Why you need to ditch "tips and tricks marketing" in 2017

-The SMART Marketing Manifesto:

  1. Sustainable – Choose marketing practices that will stand the test of time – Make sure you spend time and money formulating marketing that is based on principles and fly by night get rich quick schemes.
  2. Manageable  How to spend less time marketing and more time writing.
  3. Audience-Specific—The difference maker in 2017. Learn audience targeting, specific launch strategies, and online content aimed at your audience’s needs.
  4. Relevant - Not hip or trendy but useful and valuable to the audience. As Jay Baer would say it’s about help, not hype.
  5. Tactics Last—Strategy First - Tips and tricks only help you figure one thing out at a time. Start with goals and strategies and your tactics will be obvious and ongoing.

-Jan. 10 at 12 PM Mountain Chris joins Frances Caballo to talk about how to sell more books with less social media. Register here:

-Join the SMART Marketing for Authors closed Facebook group today:

Don't forget to go to the podcast episode page at and answer the question of the week: What is your biggest marketing challenge for 2017?

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