Platform Building-Who to Trust?

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Years ago I taught my daughter, Patty, “Don’t take financial advice from poor people.”
The same holds true for building your platform. Be cautious when taking advice. Be extra cautious when paying for advice. There ARE legitimate places to spend money, but Bill Gates could go broke buying all the courses offered.
Photo courtesy of Vichaya Kiatying-Angsulee @
We need to make sure the experts we’re following are the real deal.
Dynamic Duo Jeff Goins and Tim Grahl go together like peanut butter and jelly. But more helpful and not as calorie-laden.
Jeff’s an author and uber successful blogger with a following of 100,000. He’s about “writing, marketing, creative business ideas, and making a difference in the world.”
Tim’s the Founder of Out:think, and author of  Your First 1000 Copies: The Step-by-Step Guide to Marketing Your Book. The tagline at outthinkgroup reads, “We help authors build their platforms, connect with readers, and sell more books.”
My current budget for writing is $0, but I sign up for their free emails, books, courses, and webinars.
They whet my appetite for the awesome material they’re selling, but I still get a free mini-feast from their sampler platter. For example:
I’ve learned the #1 most effective book sales tool is (drum roll please)
Grow your email list.
(Mine’s if you feel a sudden irresistible compulsion to sign up.)
Tim Grahl gives this platform building advice:
  • Focus on the few things that work really well, instead of spreading yourself thin across a dozen platforms
  • Develop a system to figure out what is working and what isn’t, so you can keep doing the former and stop doing the latter
  • Connect with other authors and influencers who can help you quickly grow your platform
  • Create content that will attract new readers
Jeff and Tim both give away a good deal of free material. They’re worth checking out.
Now on to
Jeanie’s Super-Secret Newbie No-No’s
Photo courtesy of graur razvan ionut @
To recap what we’ve learned so far:
Week 1- Exclamation marks scream, “Newbie!”
Week 2- Annihilate Adverbs.

This week- Eradicate empty words.Really justskip them. I’m very serious.

The exception is dialogue. Sometimes.

Most new writers don’t realize that editors keep Godzilla on retainer. When a submission arrives with words like
they text him. Godzilla arrives, eradicates your manuscript with a blazing blast of fire, and collects his fee.
Play it safe and pull out the empty words yourself.

Read Grammar Nazi David Williamson’s great post on the subject to protect your work…and possibly Tokyo.
Like Mothra says, “Only you can prevent foreign fires.”

Last weekend I hosted a workshop at Bible Truth Ministries church. I shared tips about getting into print from a new writer’s perspective. My writing journey began 13 months ago, and so far I’ve sold stories for three books, two for Chicken Soup for the Soul, plus a Bethany House compilation.
If I can do it, so can you.
Since we all need to move forward, my Current Lofty Goal (AKA something I need to do, but put off)
Make my website “prettier.”
How about you? What are you working toward? I’d love to hear.
Jeanie Jacobson

Jeanie Jacobson

Jeanie Jacobson is on the leadership team of Wordsowers Christian Writers Group. Her book, Fast Fixes for the Christian Packrat, is available on Amazon. She’s also published in “Focus on the Family”and “LIVE” magazines, many Chicken Soup for the Soul releases, and Bethany House compilations. Jeanie teaches workshops geared toward helping new writers, and is working on a Christian-slanted YA fantasy novel. Connect with her at
Jeanie Jacobson

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