Wednesday, November 2, 2016

Some Promos Go Right and Others Go Wrong / IWSG


The Insecure Writer's Support Group is a safe place for insecure writers.
Sign up here: Alex J. Cavanaugh’s Insecure Writer’s Support Group



I am over at the IWSG website with Rejections: Serenity, Courage, and Wisdom.



November's Question: What is your favorite aspect of being a writer?

This may be a cliche, but my favorite aspect of being a writer is writing. I truly do love it. Even when I suffer from writer's block, I love writing. That's why being blocked sucks so much! I also love sharing my stories with readers. That is the ultimate reward.


December's IWSG Questions: In terms of your writing career, where do you see yourself five years from now, and what’s your plan to get there?

*Add this question and your answer to your December 7th IWSG post.


***

A little over a week ago I celebrated the release of my new novella and announced a sale:

Blake Herro is a cop in the Cleveland Police Force. Ever since he was a child he wanted to do right by the city he loved by cleaning up the streets and protecting its citizens. Red, a notorious mobster, has other plans.

On a bitter December night, ten police officers are drawn into a trap and killed by Red’s followers. Blake wants to bring down the Mob to avenge his fallen brothers and to prevent other cops from being murdered. Except the only way he can do that is by infiltrating the Mob.

Every minute he’s with these mobsters he’s in danger. Around every corner lies the threat of coming face to face with a gun. Will he make it out of the Mob alive or will he be their next victim?


BUY LINKS:


SALE ENDS FRIDAY!


***

Promo Efforts:

Libraries: After many emails and a month-long wait, Seismic Crimes went on the shelves in two of my local libraries in Central Florida!!!

If I were a Mobster Blogfest: Instead of a traditional blog tour for 30 Seconds Before, I wanted to do something different and fun, so I did a blogfest. The theme invited participants to turn themselves into mobsters. The posts were great. I had a blast, and I think those who participated and visited the posts also enjoyed it. Next time, I need to remember to offer a prize for my favorite post. I think that'll make things interesting. ;)


I loved them all, but there are my top three favorites:
Maureen L. Bonatch wrote a flash fiction piece.
Elizabeth Seckman created a gentle Mob boss.
Anna Durand was part of the Grammar Mafia.

Seismic Crimes Sale: In September, I did a sale on Seismic Crimes. I sent my sale info to a bunch of websites but only got featured on these: My Book Cave, Readfree.ly, and Book Bongo (UK). The rank rose but not to best-seller status, and that's okay. I had sales, which I'm happy about.

Goodreads Ad: I heard Goodreads ads were good, so I set one up for my sale. I did everything Goodreads suggested and what authors suggested. I changed it when it didn't work, targeting fans of specific authors at one point, and then readers of specific genres at another time. No one clicked on it. Not once. And Goodreads doesn't reimburse you. I added two more ads to the same campaign for 30 Seconds Before and 30 Seconds...nothing. I have ads that aren't doing a thing. 


QUESTIONS: What is your favorite aspect of being a writer? What promos have worked or haven't worked for you?


98 comments:

  1. Excellent post Chrys. It's always fun when one gets writer's block as you can write about simply "Nothing" and get away with it.
    Yvonne.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That should be fun, but nothing is quite boring. ;)

      Delete
  2. That's interesting to hear about Goodreads ads. Sorry they didn't work out for you :-( Next month's question is a great one. Can't wait to see everyone's answers to that one.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Next month's question will be interesting, and a good one to help us look forward with the end of the year.

      Delete
  3. Writing is what it all boils back to indeed. Ads in most any places suck, I find.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm finding that, too, but I sure thought Goodreads ads would've been different.

      Delete
  4. Writing indeed is the best part of what we do. Congrats on your new book! Looks awesome:)

    ReplyDelete
  5. Yeh on having your books at the local libraries!

    I remember Elizabeth's Mobster post - hysterical!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Elizabeth sure created a memorable Mobster.

      Delete
  6. Thank you, I'll not try a Goodreads ad. Facebook ads are also iffy. You really have to do your research to make one that's even half a success.

    Getting books into libraries is a beautiful thing. As a publisher, I love it because libraries don't return books. (Like bookstores do.)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The only ads I've had success with so far was a Facebook ad, but it was small success. At least they get noticed.

      Some libraries can pull your book and sell it in a book sale, though. lol

      Delete
  7. Hi Chrys,

    Congratulations on the new release! There's something intriguing about the mob, isn't there? Or at least the idea of it. I don't think I'd like a run-in with the real thing but that's the beauty of our profession: getting to do the crazy stuff we'd never really do.

    Best of luck with the publication and with your marketing! Sorry the Goodreads Ad was such a bust :(
    Jen

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I'm intrigued by the idea of the Mob. ;)

      Thank you so much, Jen!

      Delete
  8. Congratulations on getting your books in the library! That would make my day. Marketing is so hit and miss. I can't say that anything I do has made much of a difference.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Marketing sure is hit or miss. What could be golden for one could be coal for another.

      Delete
  9. Sales are good!
    Glad you had a good turnout for the mobster blogfest.

    ReplyDelete
  10. Congratulations on getting your book in the library! Woohoo!! You must be thrilled with all your accomplishments this year Chrys. You've done FAB!!! Thanks for being such a sharing and caring writer - always helpful and insightful. Really appreciate it!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I am thrilled, Nicola. :) There are so things that bring me down though like lack of sales and reviews, but I have to remember my accomplishments.

      Aw. I try, Nicola. :)

      Delete
  11. I flipflop between loving writing and loving editing. Sometimes I enjoy writing more when I'm feeling creative and other times it's editing because the words are written and I just need to make them pretty.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Editing can be a lot of fun. I enjoy it. Sometimes writing can be hard, but when you edit, you know that hard part is done.

      Delete
  12. Congrats on getting your book on the library shelves. That is awesome!
    sherry @ fundinmental

    ReplyDelete
  13. You liked mine!? Yay!!! Yeah, I totally need a prize. Just joking.

    It's funny, I've had a promo work wonders, then I'll repeat it and get nothing. I think that's why marketing is so darned frustrating.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. LOL! I'm definitely going to have a prize next time. I think more people will participate with a prize, too.

      You're right. A promo can be great the first time and then fall short the next time.

      Delete
  14. I asked my former boss, at the newspaper where I used to work, to run an article about my just-released books two years ago. Some people in the community saw it and congratulated me, but I don't think it created any sales. That paper has been losing so many subscribers since before our founder passed away in 2008, and they don't have enough money to make changes which have the potential to gain back their lost audience and lure in new subscribers.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Getting in the newspaper is great, though. Visibility is important. If you had kept doing things in your community after that, like announced a signing or something, it might've lifted off as a great promo. Even with them losing subscribers. The fact that people did congratulate you proves that they saw it. :)

      Delete
  15. The act of creating something concrete out of our ideas is always exhilarating.

    ReplyDelete
  16. Congrats on the release of your new novella. Like you, I too love writing, I am very grumpy when I don't read and write.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you, Rachna!

      I get grumpy when I don't read or write, too.

      Delete
  17. Haven't done promos yet, but I image if/when I ever get something published I will do so.
    Greatest thing about a writer for me is the creation process. The ability to create whatever character or situation I deem possible. I have total control (usually). ;)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Promos are tricky. *sigh*

      The creation process is magical. :)

      Delete
  18. Hi Chrys - congratulations on getting your book into the two libraries ... now they can recommend them to other libraries ... I think Stephen Tremp did something on those lines. Try a school or two ...

    But writing - yes I have to say I love it ... but I think I need to record some of my posts and then transcribe them ... see if that works too - I get carried away with the writing and distract myself!

    Cheers Hilary

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I don't think I could get my books into schools...too mature. A college, maybe.

      Delete
  19. Writing is fun. If it wasn't (most of the time), why do it? Good luck with the promo. I hope you get good results.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Exactly. I couldn't write if I didn't enjoy it.

      Thanks, Diane.

      Delete
  20. I'm so small that I use word of mouth and cross my fingers. From this angle I'm not much of a marketer. :-)


    Anna from elements of emaginette

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I wish I had people to make word of mouth work.

      Delete
  21. I'm not there yet, but I can imagine the frustrations of trying to figure out what works and what doesn't. Trial and error- so much fun. ;)

    ReplyDelete
  22. I remember when I published my first novel and took two copies to the local library. I didn't have a clue what I was doing. But the librarian not only took them both, she paid me. I was floored. Today she has all my copies. Bless her heart. Turns out in Canada, if your book is with the archives, they're in every library in Canada. LOL

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It was an interesting experience. I know to speak to them the moment I have a copy. Not a month or two after the release.

      Delete
  23. Yay! Libraries are tough, so many rules and regs. Good for you!
    Oh, I'm so terrible at marketing I run from it as if one of the dogs let a stink. Too bad I can't pay someone else to do it. Nevertheless, I try. Could you spare some of your enthusiasm?
    If I'm not still writing in five years, somebody (else) will have written my epitaph - ha!
    I'd also like to release at least three or four more books. Fingers crossed!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The two libraries actually took them without any hassle, but they had to create a book page for it on their "website" and set it up with a number since it was so new. That took a while.

      My enthusiasm for marketing is draining. It doesn't seem to be doing what it should anymore.

      Delete
  24. As strange as it may sound, writing is my least favorite part of being a writer. It's such a struggle for me to come up with the right words. I'd rather plot and let my imagination take off than to actually put the words on the page. But that's the only way anyone else is ever going to hear my story, so that's why I write.

    Promotions sound like a real pain, and it's hard to tell what's working and what's not. Hope your book takes off soon.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I sure do love it when my imagination goes off. :)

      Thanks, Ken!

      Delete
  25. Thanks for sharing your marketing information. It helps to hear from others when something works or doesn't. It's such a crapshoot.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It is a crapshoot! I will keep sharing my promos and the results.

      Delete
  26. I love the writing, but I hate it when too many ideas converge at once. :)
    Congratulations on your release and thanks for sharing your marketing ideas. It's a difficult thing to win at!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Too many ideas can be a hindrance.

      Thanks, Yolanda! It is difficult.

      Delete
  27. Woo Hoo on getting shelved in the libraries! That is awesome! And your blog tour was genius. Loved it.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I don't think anyone has checked a copy out yet, but it is exciting.

      Thanks! I'm glad you enjoyed it. I'm trying to come up with a theme for the next one. ;)

      Delete
  28. I'm an ideas guy but it's nice to know real writers that love the writing....................and have discovered marketing is tough.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Marketing is sooo tough. It makes me not want to write sometimes, but I love it too much to give it up.

      Delete
  29. Loving to write is an awesome answer. As far as marketing, Bookbub is my favorite promo site. Then getting my books on reading lists. SCBWI helps with that. Congrats on your new novella.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I think I tried Bookbub once or looked into it at least. I'll have to look into it again.

      Thanks!

      Delete
  30. Oh Chrys, I wish I'd known you were going for a Goodreads AD. They haven't been effective...ever. Indie Guru's have been saying that for ages, but I guess it's impossible to know until you try, eh?

    So, that means you're at one of my libraries? I'm going to go find your book and take a picture if that's true!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I think it was Lexa that had a guest post somewhere and endorsed them, so I gave it a shot.

      Well, if you're in the Melbourne area, you'll be able to find it. I need to try to get a copy in an Orlando library.

      Delete
  31. Congrats on the release!
    That's so frustrating about the goodreads ads!

    ReplyDelete
  32. Love your answer - if we didn't love writing, none of us would be here today :)! It's disappointing about your Goodreads ads, but at least you can say you've tried it and move on to the next thing :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I was very disappointed with the ad after I heard it was a good way to go. But, yes, I won't be trying it again. Lesson learned.

      Delete
  33. Sorry the ads on Goodreads didn't give you a boost, but thanks for sharing that info with us. Now I know one thing NOT to do.

    Just before my book came out, I contacted the newspaper editor of my hometown newspaper in Maryland. She got back to me, and did an in-depth interview via email, and then wrote a fabulous front page article about the book. I believe that article helped me gain sales up that-a-way. Also, I found out my high school graduating class (you know... from the Dark Ages) had a Facebook page. I joined that, as well as another Facebook group for people who grew up in the Baltimore area. I mentioned the book in both of those places when it first came out, and have mentioned it again when the book went on sale for 99 cents a couple of times. Those moves helped generate sales, too.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Not many ads work. Twitter ads were equally disappointing and a huge waste. I've only had luck with a FB ad.

      I'll have to look for groups for my school and area. That's a good idea! I tried contacting my hometown newspaper a few times and never heard back. I also tried my state paper with no luck.

      Delete
  34. I didn't have any luck with Goodreads ads, either. I've found Facebook ads (not promoted posts) are more effective - especially when I emphasize to read free in Kindle Unlimited.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I've also only had luck with FB ads. I've never mentioned Kindle Unlimited, though. I'll do that next time.

      Delete
  35. I've taken ads in ebook newsletters--those seemed to do well enough, but choosing which ones and when to take get an ad is the hard part. Promoting is tough. It takes a lot to get a story to an end product, so you have to love it to do it!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I never had any luck with newsletter ads. And I thought I was picking good ones. My ads just seemed to get buried because so many other authors had ads in the newsletter, too.

      Delete
  36. I haven't tried a goodreads ad so I don't think I will now that I've read this. Facebook ads are effective though. Pubslush is pretty good as well. They featured my book for a day. That didn't cost me anything. Every Wednesday is (was) female author book promo day. I'm not sure if they're still doing this. Newspaper interviews were effective and got people out to the bookstore to buy my book, the old fashioned way. LOL. Thanks for sharing your process, Chrys. 30 Seconds Before looks awesome! I will get a copy now. Wish I could have participated in your mobster blog hop.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. FB ads seem to be the only ads that work for me. I'll have to look into Pubslush. Thanks for the tip! And thank you for picking up 30 Seconds Before. I appreciate it. :)

      Delete
  37. That's some good feedback. Now you know what to do (and what not to do) for the next one.

    ReplyDelete
  38. Sorry to hear that Goodreads ad didn't work all that well but it does come to learning and we are always open to that. It must feel so good when you enjoy something and your see the fruits of your labour.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It was a learning experience. Now I know. We all learn when we try something new.

      Delete
  39. As a reader I can say that I almost never click ads. Not unless it's offering a discount on books. I like attending online Facebook parties, reading online posts that interest me, the right online profile could get me interested in a book, recommendations from fave authors or bloggers, a statement in your book from a popular author (which she posts about doing online) and other stuff. The point is there are all kinds of ways to promote your books and get attention. All the best Fey.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Two of my ads were for sales. I'm careful to not make them all "buy me" and ask for them to read the full blurb on Goodreads instead.

      I know there are many ways to get attention for books, but so many authors are doing the same things, so it's hard to get noticed. What once worked, no longer does.

      I did a FB party in July that was a success.

      Delete
  40. I love the writing, too. :)
    And December's question - ooh, boy. I will have to think about that one.

    ReplyDelete
  41. Hi Chrys
    So far, not a single promo has worked for me. I just ran a Facebook promo which was an accident. I was on it investigating and there was no cancel button. Zero sells.

    Good luck,
    Nancy

    ReplyDelete
  42. Just sitting down and writing is a wonderful thing to do. A gift. I'm looking forward to getting back to writing once I move.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I sure hope your move us smooth so you can get back to writing.

      Delete
  43. Great idea to do a blog hop for your book release, and fun theme!
    IWSG co-host Mary at Play off the Page

    ReplyDelete
  44. I'm with you, I love writing and writer's block sucks! I hate that feeling when you want to share an idea, but the words won't come out on the page. But, when they finally do, it's magical :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. It sure does suck, but you're right...when you break the curse, it's magical. :)

      Delete
  45. I love editing, but you've got to write something to edit, LOL! Wow, disappointing about Goodreads promos! The results for all media are many and varied. But you have to keep at it. I hope Wild Rose Press does something for you!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Unfortunately, The Wild Rose Press doesn't do all that much with marketing. It's really up to the author.

      Delete
  46. I love the writing aspect too, but I find that I honestly don't enjoy it as much now that I have the pressure of deadlines and expectations from readers. *sigh* And if I didn't have to market at all, then I would really love to focus all my time and energy on only writing!

    Sad to hear that the Goodreads ad did nothing. But thank you for paving the way so I know what works and what doesn't! :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The only deadlines I have are the ones I place on myself, but they can sure be restricting. Oh, how I wish I didn't have to worry about marketing.

      Haga! You're welcome! :)

      Delete
  47. If only writing was the only thing we had to do! It seems like with promo, you never know what will work and what won't. But in terms of Goodreads, I found that joining a review group was a fun way of getting more reviews.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I tried review groups. I never really had much success with them. With one, I got back two for one story and one for the others.

      Delete
  48. Hi, Chyrs,

    Sorry about GOODREADS, but at least you tried.... Determination like yours will get you to the best seller lists very soon. CONGRATS on getting into two libraries.... that is AMAZING!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi, Michael! Oh boy. My goal is to be a best-seller. I sure hope it happens soon. :) Thank you for the motivation!

      Delete
  49. Hmm, I thought after I found my commenting problem and came back here and commented. I guess not. I found two I thought I did but no comment or maybe it was eaten? But it appeared to post when I did it. Eyes crossing. Great post and answer.

    Juneta @ Writer's Gambit

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I can check my spam folder, but your comments usually come through fine. I'm sorry you're having problems commenting on people's blogs. What a headache.

      Delete

Please tell me what you think. I love to chat! :)

Popular Posts!

Join!

Follow!