Using Exclusive Content to Turn Readers Into Fans: Serials

Serials

We’re back after a little holiday hiatus with part 3 of our series! Have you ever considered serializing a book or a story for readers? Serials are a great way to engage your audience. And, let’s be clear what we mean by “serial.” A serial is just taking some story or content and chopping it and serving it out in little bits*. You can serialize a full novel or a novella, it works the same.

We have a number of authors who are doing serials on BookFunnel, and the engagement is consistently high. They can be used to get new readers onto your list, but they also work well as a reward for existing readers. Giving them a little something to read every week (or every other week) makes readers happy.

Engage!

The biggest thing you get from a serial is regular engagement. If you’re the kind of author that cringes at the idea of sending out a newsletter, serials could be for you. Every week, every two weeks, once a month, however you want to do it, you have something to say and it keeps your list warm. And, unlike news of your cat(s), you’re sending readers something that will make everyone happy: more content from you.

And, if you’re clever, and you’ll use this serial to lead into your other books or series. Let readers get hooked on the characters in the serial and then point them at the rest of the story (maybe while it is on sale for the holidays?). Even a seasoned fan that has already read your entire catalogue can enjoy the serial and it will remind them why they joined your list in the first place. This is just more content for them, and they’ll love you all the more.

Also, don’t blow that regular engagement. You have a reason to email your list every week now with something relevant. Ask them questions. Which character would you like to see more of? What part of the series do you want to hear more about in my next serial?

Box It Up

And, of course, when you’re done with the serial, you have one more piece of content. You can add it to your welcome sequence and keep it free forever, or box that serial up into a single book and sell it. Your fans still got the VIP treatment because they got to read it before anyone else, and now that it’s done, people that aren’t your VIPs can pay for it.

Your Own Personal Wattpad

You don’t even have to write something new for this. You can take an existing work and serialize it yourself to your list. This might annoy some that have already read it, but it still gives you a chance to engage with your readers on a regular basis. If they’ve already read it, ask them questions with each chapter about why they loved the book or characters the first time.

*It’s not technically a serial, but who’s going to stop you? The Serial Police?

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