Promoting a Story

Well I've been hard at work build traffic for my little web publishing company (fluffy-seme) and I decided to put together some thoughts on the various advertising/promotion services out there, what was successful, what wasn't, what each program is best suited for (from the web series writer's perspective) and what you can expect to spend for each one up here:


http://www.fluffy-seme.net/blogs/entry/Promoting-Your-Story


Thought some people here may be interested in avoiding my mistakes XD XD XD


Could you post examples of the types of ads you posted? I love the break-down by service, though. Project Wonderful sounds exactly that.


Looks good Isa. I agree that Project Wonderful has been very beneficial.


I will say that I put myself on StumbleUpon last week for free and have already gotten about 30 clicks, with an average visit of 4 pages and something like 2-3 minutes. Which I don't think is that bad.


Also, I'm now following you on Twitter. :)


grantcravens: Sure thing the Facebook ad looks like this:

http://www.fluffy-seme.net/Facebook_ad.png


And the Project Wonderful ad looks like this:

http://www.fluffy-seme.net/ss_adsky1.png


I'm seriously considering doing a more general ad and throwing some more money at Project Wonderful because they seem (from the analytics we have so far) to be EXTREMELY effective ads and oh so cheap :D


allantmichaels: What category did you list in Stumble? : / Ironically enough I have yet to try a more writing/books category for our content because I'm kind of more interested in building a reading audience not necessarily a writing audience (although obviously there is some cross over)


I used webfiction, webnovel, writing, blook, wovel and fiction.


Basically, as many ways as I could communicate that I was producing webfiction.


Ohh... Wovel is a new one. Also, the Project Wonderful ad looks fantastic. Who designed it?


Can't take credit for it. But I do have ownership of the name of the first ever webfiction authors convention:


WovelCon!


Now, we just have to make it happen.


Well, just wondering, is it okay to promote a story by posting it up everywhere? My web fiction is based on Xanga, with a port at Wordpress.com. I'm quite worried if I cannot handle the number of sites I'm handling.


grantcravens: Thanks :) I have a bzillion odd skills, one of them being graphic design XD so ...uhh... I designed it. I actually put together a second one last night for when that particular ad loses clicks to attract fresh eyes:


http://www.fluffy-seme.net/ss_adsky2.png


I think I may like that one even more XD (in case you were wondering these ads are for a serial that premiered just this week Split-Self ... right now it's only available to fluffy-seme members [*cough* this is free BTW] but I'll be submitting it to WFG as soon as the chapters start to archive in the public-no-membership-required-section ... in another week or so)


Murazrai: This is my opinion on the subject: there's a fine line between crossposting and spam. Crossposting works because it brings quality content to another site/group, but you have to remember that in most cases sites don't really want content so much as they want activity. So the cross posting that worked best for me were in communities/sites where I was also an active, contributing or established member. I think audiences are like plants they need cultivation to grow, so if you can manage being active on five or six different sites (whatever that may entail, reading/reviewing others work, commenting, discussing) then as long as you're not breaking the rules I'd say it's okay. But if you can't then I think you risk damaging your story because it gets labelled in people's minds as SPAM and they just ignore your posts whenever they see them.


allantmichaels: And what pray tell will we do it WovelCon :3 (Wovel, btw, sounds to me like some kind of space beetle from the Star Wars universe hahaha)


Isa,


I imagine we'll do what they do at comic conventions - have booths to sell merchandise, meet the authors, have panels on various topics.


Now, we just need to reach critical mass to the point it becomes worth hosting! :) But considering there are 300 stories on here in less than a year, and with bigger name authors jumping into the internet pool, we're not that far away from being there.


allantmichaels: That *does* sound neat XD Keep me posted~


haha - don't worry - if I ever do decide to try and do something like Wovelcon, this'll be one of the first places I go to announce it.


But if y'all are depending on me, it might be a LONG time.


Y'know, while a full-bore Wovelcon may not be viable just yet, wouldn't mind meetups at local conventions...


-J


I'm certainly in favor of that. And if I get a big enough bee in my bonnet, I may even contact the folks at ComicCon about hosting a panel next year....


All this is very helpful for my brother and I. He's going to design an ad so that we're ready to join Project Wonderful. Also, our website was featured in a front page story this week in the Santa Monica Daily Press at http://www.smdp.com/Articles-c-2009-07-23-60857.113116_Shoes_on_the_other_foot_now.html.

I think local papers are very willing to look at local efforts or storylines that include their city.


Just posted a follow-up to the article going into much more detail about our Project Wonderful Campaigns if you guys are interested:


http://www.fluffy-seme.net


You can always count on the fangirls to rally behind anything that might have homosexual undertones!!


The only way to get a story read is to write it well.


Sorry guys.


For a couple of weeks now I've had leaderboard ads for my fantasy-with-gay-bits serial Ketrin ( http://www.p-synd.com/ketrin/ketrinp.htm ) running on both Tales of Mu and An Intimate History of the Greater Kingdom.


And... I've had lots of e-mails with highbid and outbid notices, but as yet none actually commenting on the story. Even one saying "This sucks!" would at least tell me the ads were actually generating clicks.


On the bright side, I'm not getting any additional spam either.


As for NedC's sage advice, all I can say is "Don't you think I'm trying?", and I suspect that goes for most of us.


Leem: Google Analytics is your best friend in the world. It will tell you definitely whether or not people are clicking and reading or clicking and leaving. Other than that you can check basic stats by clicking "bid performance" on your control panel at Project Wonderful.


NedC: Were that the truth, sadly we have generations worth of literature to prove that it's not. Then there's that whole tree falls in the empty forest concept, one of the downsides of publishing online, if you put something up and no one knows about it, how is the quality of the writing supposed to help you?