Saturday, July 28, 2012

Kinky Sex

Warning:  This post doesn't really have anything to do with kinky sex.  I'm just doing a little experiment.  I'm pretty sure that if a blog post has a title with any of the following words - sex, kinky, throbbing , you get the idea - it gets way more views regardless of its content than any other entitled tome.

Anyway, today's post has to do with reviews and marketing.  (Admit it, if the title was Reviews and Marketing, would never would have checked this out, right?)  Now that I think about it, having kinky sex with a reviewer could, in fact, be a marketing tool.  There.  I feel better.  I did mention kinky sex.  Now I can't be accused of bait and switch.  Bait and Switch...that could have something to do with kinky sex as well.  Probably something Christian Grey would be into.

So back to reviews and marketing.  Laurie, at Laurie's Paranormal Thoughts and Reviews has graciously invited me to do an author interview on her blog on September 8th.  I'm very excited; this will be my first time.  Her blog readers should enjoy that; isn't it always a bonus with a virgin? (Oops, there's a sexual comment again.)  Seriously, thanks for the invitation, Laurie.  But along with the invite, she added some incredibly useful "bonus" information, the best of which was an absolutely fantastic link to a list of potential review sites.  The long and informative list was compiled by Pippa Jay and Lauri Owen.  Using it, the last couple of days I sent out 48 new review requests.  I have already received positive responses from six sites!    I had previously used another list for names of potential reviewers, from which I sent out about the same number of requests.  Most of the listings weren't accepting new requests, and of the 52 I contacted, I only got six reviews. So, I'm pretty happy with Pippa and Lauri's list; most of the sites were ones of which I was unaware.

I am encouraged by the response so far, and I hope to have more agree to review soon.  My loins are throbbing just thinking about the possibilities...

Monday, July 16, 2012

Facebook Ad Experiment Update: The Good, The Bad and The Ugly

My Facebook ad finished its run yesterday, and frankly, I'd have to say it was a partial success. The ad directed people who already expressed interest in paranormal romance to a post on Special Offers' FB page, describing the book and detailing where to buy it.  I was charged - I think - every time someone clicked on the ad.

The Good: I got over a hundred "likes" on my FB page.  And along with the likes, I got some good feedback from some people on a variety of topics related to Special Offers.

The Bad:  I didn't get that many sales.  About 10% of those who liked the page actually bought the book. Which is a little confusing to me; I would have thought when someone liked the book's page, they would be somewhat inclined to shell out the 0.99 to read it.  At first, I wondered if many of those who liked but didn't buy were people that didn't own an eReader, or didn't realize that they could download the Kindle app for free for their computer.  I posted asking if the lack of an actual print version was preventing some from purchasing, but only three people said they'd buy it if it existed as a paperback.

The Ugly:  I still don't completely understand the FB ad stuff.  You get a whole crap-load of "statistics" about how many people your ad has reached, how often people click, etc, but I never got to see what the ad actually looked like.  And I have no idea if my goal of getting more sales would have been better accomplished by directing the ad to the book's Amazon page rather than its FB page.  Because whether I like it or not, the vast majority of sales are through Amazon.  Sure, a few have bought the Nook or iPad versions.  But 99% of my "sales" through Smashwords have occurred during various free promotions.

In an attempt to make some sense from the bewildering world of the FB ad, I started a new, smaller ad campaign.  This ad directs people who are interested in romance books (presumably a wider audience than before) to a new post on the book's FB page.  This time, I should only be charged - I think - when someone actually goes to the book's Amazon page.  Or maybe not.  Which brings me back to the ugly part. It is unbelievably difficult to figure out what has to happen to be charged.  So what I think I'm paying for might not be anywhere close to what I'm actually getting.  And the forums are no help at all.  I think it is because everyone is as confused as am, but too embarrassed to admit they are clueless.  Seriously, I have a Ph.D., albeit not in advertising or marketing, and I'm pretty much flying by the seat of my pants here.  So much for higher education.