A bit about my journey in marketing…
Emily Enger is a book marketing and publicity coach. She teaches poets, fiction, and creative nonfiction authors how to incorporate minimalist marketing strategies into their creative process so they become successful without feeling overwhelmed. Emily has worked in the marketing and PR field for over ten years. Her career boasts titles such as Assistant Editor for a national trade magazine company and Communications Director for a Minnesota arts nonprofit that serves nine rural counties and three Native American reservations. Visibility and creative networking were an early passion for Emily. Her first marketing job was at only 16 years old, when she convinced a small summer camp to give her a shot at their Communications Coordinator position. Emily holds a B.A. in English, a Minor in Music and a Certificate in Publishing from Minnesota State University-Moorhead. She is also a certified content marketer. Emily lives in the northwoods of Minnesota with her husband and two children. Follow her on Instagram at @emilyengerwrites.
Certificate in Publishing, Minnesota State University Moorhead
Content Marketing Certification, Hubspot Academy
Assistant Editor (trade magazines), Lee Publications
Marketing Columnist, Lee Publications
Communications Director, Watermark Art Center
Book Marketer & Author Virtual Assistant, Freelance
Some Career Highlights…
Workshops & Presentations
It has been my honor to be a featured speaker at the following conferences and summits:
- Independent Publishers of New England Conference (upcoming), 2023
- The Loft Literary Center (Minneapolis, MN), 2023
- Women in Publishing Summit (virtual), 2023
- The Poetry Salon (virtual – Free replay available here!), 2022
- Minnesota Northwoods Writers Conference (Bemidji, MN) 2022
- Red River Valley Writing Project (Fargo, ND), 2022
I decided I wanted to be a writer when I was ten years old. I had just read The Saturdays, a children’s novel by Elizabeth Enright. If there was a real job that meant I, too, could create such magical worlds, then I wanted to be signed up for that career!
From that moment, everything in my young life was in service toward my ultimate goal of being a novelist. Every job, every hobby, every moment of free time all somehow fed into improving my craft. I read so many books, I had more fictitious friends than real ones. I wrote stories and poetry almost daily, filling an external hard drive plugged into my parent’s old dinosaur Dell. I pursued a degree in English and intentionally chose a college with a publishing program that would teach me all the behind-the-scenes tricks to get my foot in the door of this competitive industry.
But in college, another bug bit me, too, in an advanced marketing class. I realized that Communications and Public Relations work made me feel alive and full of purpose. So, though I continued to pursue creative writing during my spare time, I spent the next decade working in marketing, mostly in creative, arts-based spaces.
Then one day I landed a dream. An excerpt from my unpublished novel earned me an all-expenses-paid trip to a writers retreat to study under an award-winning literary novelist. I couldn’t quite believe it. After so many years, my inner little girl was finally getting a chance to focus on her dream.
During the retreat, an acquisitions editor from one of the Big 5 publishing houses gave a presentation. She discussed a lot of things, including what genres her company was seeking that year and which social platforms they looked at when considering new talent. I was working as a freelance book marketer at the time, so I understood the industry enough to not be surprised by such a cold, analytical approach to books. But this was the first time I was getting the advice instead of giving it. The perspective shift was humbling.
I left that retreat overwhelmed, knowing how many years it would take me to build the kind of platform agents would be enticed by. Unfortunately, I had spent years marketing for others. Other authors. Other nonprofits. Other companies. And not any time marketing my own personal brand. And now here I was, finally ready to fulfill a 20-year childhood dream, only to be told I still couldn’t start yet.
I decided to not give up quietly. The industry was asking authors to be professional marketers. Well. Wasn’t I lucky? That’s what I knew the most about. I decided to stop doing “Done For You” marketing services for authors and became a book marketing coach instead. Because if this was going to be a requirement for authors, then somebody had to teach them how to do it.
Thus, Good Enough Book Marketing was born. This program is built around a principle I had already crafted from my years (and mistakes) in the marketing industry: minimalist marketing.
How I Came Up with the “Good Enough” Method and Why It Matters So Much To Me
When I was marketing for companies and nonprofits, I was a workaholic who gave 110% and sacrificed health, relationships and boundaries at the altar of stress and perfection, checklists and timelines.
Then my husband and I started our own woodworking business. Because we couldn’t afford to quit our jobs, we began it as a side hustle, growing it slowly and imperfectly with what little energy we had left in the tank after other responsibilities.
The woodworking business did not scale the way I over-planned and expected, but even though my Big Detailed Marketing Plan didn’t unfold as was written, we still achieved the outcome we wanted: after only a couple years in business, both my husband and I were able to quit our careers and work for ourselves.
In starting my own business, I learned my most valuable lesson. Perfection in marketing isn’t just an impossible goal, it’s an unnecessary one.
How did we grow an artisan business into something that provided a livable wage for a family of four? We stopped holding ourselves to an impossible standard.
We didn’t grow our business perfectly, but we did it good enough. We found ways to prioritize our sanity without sacrificing all profit. We stopped believing the lie that being stretched too thin was the sign of a good work ethic. We adjusted some of our expectations while still holding on to our top non-negotiables.
I found creative and financial freedom for my family and I want to help you find it, too.
There are marketing experts out there who are employed by Fortune 500 companies and use confusing acronyms like B2C, ROI and AIDA. Who care so much about branding that they won’t rename their TV program even when the talent it was named for leaves the show!
I am not that person.
I am the woman living in the woods, writing her own novel while pondering the relevancy of 19th century literature. I am the woman who will tell you that overwhelm is an enemy of creativity. And who will insist that your first priority always be your “writer” hat—even if current publishing trends keep saying otherwise. Most importantly, I am the woman who will let you in on the big marketing secret: growth isn’t tied to hustling or investment, it is tied to efficiency and consistency. And in my newsletter, I help you discover what that looks like for you.