Thursday, June 11, 2015

Looks of companies that offer twitter campaigns for authors and even provide pushes of chapters to Kindle


Recently I’ve gotten some “Twitter life” messages suggesting more ways to promote my self-published books.
  
First, let me point out a Vox article by Ezra Klein on the glories of Kindle (and probably Nook) for readers, and the awkwardness of PDF’s for long articles or position papers published as “booklets”, here

Next, let me point out the “new” sales page for my own books, here.   Tweeting this one link seems to have gotten me an unprecedented rush of followers, but many of them try to sell obvious services to authors. 

There seem to be numerous sites that offer twitter-advertising campaigns for member authors (like “Booktweep” and “Book Tweeter”), claiming to place the books with purchase links in front of hundreds of thousands of people. 

There is a site called “Kindlemojo” that, among other services, has a “Books and Bacon” campaign, link ) intending to push early chapters of books onto large numbers of Kindle devices to encourage future purchases. 

I don’t know if this would be practical for a book like mine (already published) when it is more “academic” in many ways and not as “entertaining” as a lot of consumer items.  It might interfere with other campaigns to place books in stores. 

I've long depended on "passive" advertising of my material, letting it be found by search engines without any specific SEO.  That has worked for a long time in the past  But the people who find "your" material this way may be mostly those in "your choir", not the public at large, because they already are familiar with "your" issues and where to look for them.  
    
A huge portion of the traffic that I see seems to be fantasy or “alternate world” sci-fi.  


Update: June 15

Note the short film by Calumet on how "self-publishing" and hybrid work today, and on how the traditional publishing industry used the word "vanity" in a vain attempt to gate-keep the book supply smaller. Note the mention of many self-published authors, including Vince Flynn.

I'm seeing a lot of this on Twitter lately.

Update: June 21

Here's another link, "5 Horrible Mistakes Self-Publishing Authors Make" by Laurence O'Brien on "Services 4 Authors", here. Four of the points I agree with.  The email list is more problematical. People don't like getting mass emails today because of the spam problem.  It's easier to get lists of Twitter followers, but you have to be careful not to act too spammy there, too.  I think his idea that it takes traditional publishers a long time to publish a book, partly because they want to have have a lot of favorable reviews accumulated is interesting.  But that means that if a book is about something really important and current (like terrorism) it takes too long to get out.  For fiction this could make sense.  For "How to" in the tech area, it could lead to quick obsolescence.The idea also leads approaches to sensitive social or political issues that over-commercialize and dumb-down the material, and lose objectivity. 

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