Yes, I promised. I would return after the blog tour concluded to discuss the results. And with the tour almost two weeks done at this point, I have to ask… too soon?
Maybe. But here’s what can report. I don’t know.
I have been selling books two ways at this point in the journey. On amazon.com (and on CreateSpace’s store) in both print and Kindle. And onsite at my book signing tour. (I do mean tour – that’s for next week’s blog) Anyway.
I’ve been averaging about 10 books a week. I’ve been selling about 30-50 at each of two signings to date (with five more before Christmas). So, between FB announcements about the book, these blogs, twitter announcements and the blog tour, I’m hitting it with everything I got.
So you do the math. At this point I can’t subtract the blog tour out of the equation but I can say that of the 10 blogs I was featured on, most were a nice ego stroke, but the blogger looked more interested in taking the day off and dumping my press kit (example available – just ask!) onto their site for the day and calling it done.
But there were 3 that took it seriously – one sent the interview questions ahead to me for filling it out exclusively – the other two took the interview responses from my PR gal’s boiler plate (which I took very seriously – and tried to balance my irreverent witty sense of humor with good punctuation… to appear erudite… LOL) Of the two who went with my on-file interview, both added a personal note/and endorsement to their readers, so it really did feel being “featured.” I will say that after the first couple of “dumps” I did complain to my PR agent. I did suggest (after I figured out what was going on – a day off for the blogger in trade for being featured on their site) that they at least add a paragraph in their own words to grab their reader’s attention. Which did happen on the two other rockstars. But what made the the other tow rockstars shine was that they tweeted the heck out of lil ol’ me AND their followers retweeted me. And retweeted me, and… well, my inbox virtually blew up one day when H.K Carlton @AuthorHKCarlton added the hashtag #mustread and hit the little blue bird… @Rachelle Ayala at BooksPromotion had the same effect.
And guess what? All of the best at promote were writers themselves. They knew what were’ all trying to accomplish. And they did their part. So I need to step up. But has it resulted in sales? I will confess as a member of the broadcast TV tribe for the last 30 years, I have always known of the unholy shotgun wedding of storytellers to our red-headed stepchildren the advertisers and PR peeps was what made the entire engine run. I don’t completely trust that it’s any one thing that is responsible for overall sales. It is truly alchemy or voodoo that can’t be completely reduced to a single thing or formula (tho’ that holy grail has been sought by everyone who ever had an overhead… overhead!)
But now that my hair is red, I have to ask myself (tho’ also as a turncoat, I will never admit it outloud) what the one thing is or will be that will open the flood gates.
I’m glad I did it – and the cost wasn’t crazy. I know a few ways to do it better next time… and that’s the ultimate question right? Would I do it again next time?
Well, since I am the gal with the lucky charm on keychain, who never steps on cracks, probably… but much better next time.
I will insist on screening the potential blog sites before we go up (my book has a niche audience) and make sure they’re compatible. I will insist that a personal intro go in front of my press kit AND a call to action from the blogger to end the article in whatever way is appropriate to that blogger’s site and audience. It can be as simple as “write your comments/questions below for the author” or anything that takes it out of being a throw away blog for that day.I do think there’s more to this subject than I know – so I’d love, love, love your thoughts and comments – so please post them below!Until next week! Every great blogger has a signature sign-of line. (Okay I stole that from talking into microphones)
Okay, now that the tryptophan has worn off, we’re back in the saddle. But I did have time to think during the albeit forced “pause.” My mission with this blog has been to document my learning curve so that the next girl receives less “lessons” along the way. And I realize in the warp drive we’re flying at, that some of my observations may seem that they would’ve been obvious to anyone who stopped for even half a second to think before leaping… but then… that’s not me. And in that simple understanding, I hope you’ll see the brilliance.
Because I know myself. My brain needs a “Scooby snack” to gnaw on while it waits for… results. Because, as artistic as we all ARE. We also, having stepped off onto this path, also become businesspeople. We’re self-publishers. You notice there’s never a mention of self-writers… write? I mean, right?
Because, no self-respecting writer WANTS to be a self-publisher. It’s a necessity that we may over time become addicted to… as the glorious heroin of power fills our veins with the power to say YES! Yes, it will be there, when I say! Yes, I can do that! Yes, this the color I want…
Now whether those decisions stick or make sense, are correct or successful are not the point. They just are. So make, ‘em and live with ‘em.
God did give me two halves to make my brain – one is the creative teenager, who never wants to clean her room, eat her broccoli or miss the prom. The other side is the sober statistician/mentat – or the adult in the room. She is wicked quick, whipsmart and sharp. She knows how long it takes to get from point a to b, with all of the factors in and has the track record to back-up her very opinionated view.
These girls are a great team – one always cover for the other and each never lets the other down. BUT, they are very jealous of the other’s spotlight, so it’s important to keep the girls separated.
That’s the brilliance of this self-publishing thingy. The teenager in me is so impatient with those, what are they called? Oh, yeah, details. (whatever) that the adult can get her to chill out by turning her lose on something like designing the next web page or creating an email letterhead, or the like, while they both wait for so and so to return a call, or an email response to come in, or any of the various “delays” in the process that are the daily life of a… well, a one of us.
So… what’s my ultimate point? Why thanks for asking! It’s to be grateful for the details, as they say, you-know-who is there smiling and watching as your little baby starts to stand on its on and… gosh, actually sell!
Blog Byline: Scottie Madden
Scottie currently lives with her love in a treehouse in the shadow of LA’s infamous “dirt Mullholland,” with their black dog Aria. When she’s not pretending that developing, writing and running television shows is anything other than a dream come true, (if they find out it isn’t hard at all, they’ll make us work!) she is cooking up some wild adventure in food for her friends and family.