Monday, December 19, 2011

Interview with Marketing Wiz Jo-Anne Vandermeulen

I'm super-excited to introduce special guest Jo-Anne Vandermeulen, who has recently helped me with a couple of marketing projects, and did so successfully! She's such an accomplished and inspiring entrepreneur, I thought our readers should meet her.

AC: You’re a writer, promoter, radio talk show host. Out of all the hats you wear, do you have a favorite?

JAV: No. To me, the different "hats" are like my choice of a favorite color…depending on the day, one may be more a favorite then the other. I call the three different roles my balance in life.

AC: How did you get into helping others promote their books?

JAV: When I was writing my first novel, I had read that marketing needs to happen even before publication date. Gosh, I was so scared to take this foreign path. In 2007, I began studying promotion and surprisingly, hit a passion in my life I had never imagined. The marketing content was so so cool that I just couldn’t keep it bottled . . . so, I began sharing the wealth of knowledge with others. With no expectations and completely unconditional in my "wants," the feedback began rolling in and I mean by the thousands! The responses fed my innate desire to help others (being a teacher for twenty years and a mother of two daughters) promote their books.

AC: What is the best, most effective marketing tool you have found?

JAV: My followers or fans are my most effective marketing tools. By myself, I could never bring so much exposure to my books. Actually, quite a rewarding and effective promotional tactic, "I’ll scratch your back, and it would be great if you could scratch mine." Simple and effective.

AC: How do you acquire these helpful friends?

JAV: It’s a toss-up between blogging and social networking. Blogging takes commitment to post regularly. The articles must supply content that is both valuable and unique, and written in a voice that rings true. The end goal is to attract huge targeted traffic or numbers of followers interested in your books.

Social Networking (my favorite social media site right now is Facebook). Again, having followers on Facebook takes a genuine and authentic voice—to gain trust in growing relationships.

AC: What is the primary mistake you see newbie authors making while marketing their books?

JAV: Hey, I can answer this one from experience…lol…The number one mistake newbies make when promoting their book is spending time bringing exposure to the wrong audience. Marketing is very time consuming so if the newbie is "barking up the wrong tree," not only are they wasting time where they could be pitching it to the "right" or targeted audience, but also they will not gain sales because no one is interested in their book.

I remember spending so much time with other writers, it just felt comfortable that I forgot to introduce myself to suspense/romance readers. Don’t get me wrong, this was not a waste of time as I learned a lot, but I did not get the sales I had hoped.

AC: Tell us about your first radio interview. Nervous?

JAV: To be honest, I wasn’t nervous, I was excited. I really missed teaching and professional speaking, so after researching blogtalkradio to death, I knew I was prepared and roaring to go.

AC: You’re changing the name of your show. What to, and why?

“Authors Articulating with Jo-Anne Vandermeulen” is now going to be called “Talk Radio Network." Change is seldom a bad move. I have been producing and hosting radio for two and a half years, seeing seventy-five archived shows, and I have over 12,000 active listeners with over 250,000 followers. I had done the show as gratis to authors and those in the writing field. It is time for me to expand my audience to include anyone who is selling products through the Internet. It matches the theme to my upcoming release Internet Marketing Made Easy (January 2nd, 2012), and it is time I receive payment for my time, effort, and experience.

AC: Internet Marketing Made Easy is coming out soon. What can we hope to find between the covers?

JAV: Lots of user-friendly and valuable tips about marketing on the Internet.
Here’s my pitch:

Now you will be able to make a difference to your sales and *conquer all obstacles* "INTERNET MARKETING MADE EASY” will give you the knowledge to make the profits you deserve.
Packed with tips that are proven to work
User-friendly for the beginner, average, and advanced marketer
Up-to-date attainable tips you can use right now,
Flexible in that you can use these tips for ANY product you wish to sell online, and…
Quick read - (although a costly publishing and printing costs for her, she PERSONALLY REQUESTED THIS ADDITIONAL TECHNIQUE so you will be able to flow through the entire book quickly and with complete understanding – instead of just a glossary at the back, each technical or marketing term is highlighted with a definition and/or example RIGHT AT THE BOTTOM OF THE SAME PAGE! BRILLIANT!!!)

Getting Started: Creating a Following
Establishing a Voice (BLOGGING)
Advancing in the Search Engines
Jo-Anne’s Favorite Tips
Guaranteeing Massive Exposure (SOCIAL NETWORKING)
Creating a Platform (ATTRACTING CLIENTS)
Targeting your Audience (SAVING ENERGY)
Balancing Online Activities (MANAGING TIME)
Reaching Your Goal (SUCCESS HERE I COME!)

AC: What else is in the works for you?

JAV: I try and live my life as one day at a time. I strive for balance—work, play, and rest (and not always in that order), feeding myself: spiritually, intellectually, mentally, and physically. I listen to my needs or inner instincts and walk through doors that are open—doing the footwork of sudden and unplanned opportunities (kinda like this interview which will provide more exposure. I’m so grateful for this opportunity). I heed to obstacles that interfere with my chosen path and abruptly turn around and go down another road. So what is next for me is a question that can change answers on a daily, weekly, and monthly basis. For example, today my agenda included this interview, a workout at the pool, a walk in the park with my mini-daschound—Oscar, answering emails while hanging out at an Internet CafĂ©, and I’m looking forward to a movie tonight while curled up in front of my fireplace. I’ve dedicated the month of December to "self"—a clean-up month of websites, computer hard-drives, and year-end income tax. Oh ya, and the launching of Internet Marketing Made Easy. To be honest, I haven’t got a clue what is in store for January or the 2012 year. If it is anything like the previous, I’ll just hold on tight and enjoy the ride.

AC: Where can our readers reach you?

JAV: The simple answer is to Google my name. I’m all over the place and love to interact with my readers.

AC: What services do you offer?

JAV: “Premium Promotional Services” *You Create – We Promote* offers these services:
Book Promo
Promo Deal 
Twitter Promo
Facebook Business Page
Talk Radio Network

Jo-Anne Vandermeulen is a Canadian author, expert blogger (offering free Internet marketing tips), producer and hostess of “Authors Articulating” on Blogtalkradio, founder and marketer of the online marketing business—“Premium Promotional Services”, appears on many major social media sites (Facebook, Linkedin, Twitter, Goodreads, etc.) a professional support network for writers, and donates to the registered charity 'Spirit Pet Sanctuary'. With two books out (including a suspense/romance novel) called “CONQUER ALL OBSTACLES”, Jo-Anne has overcome her own obstacles to follow her dreams. An English major, graduated from the University of Saskatchewan (Canada), in 2006 she had to give up teaching when she was diagnosed with an illness that forced her to get out of the classroom. Now, with the novel “Conquer All Obstacles”, and the non-fiction resource books “Premium Promotional Tips for Writers” and Internet Marketing Made Easy”, Jo-Anne Vandermeulen is an inspiration for many.
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