I’m sorry this so late. I am having trouble with the site today. I am such a compu-dunce. Sigh…
As you have seen from Edmund’s pictures on Saturday, we had a blast at StellarCon. We also picked a name from the hat for our basket of goodies.
Emily Pea Fairy, you are the winner!
Let’s hear it for Emily! Yea!!!!
Emily email me offline so I can get your mailing address.
Back to your regularly scheduled post. This is about some specifics relating to PR. It’s just bits and pieces of things, nothing cohesive because my brain is fried after last night!
Not a big party with too much of everything. No. Rather …
Last night, I did something that all writers are asked to do at some point – I was the special guest at a live chat. It was blast. I usually turn down live chats because of my typing. I have what is called a familial tremor, and while my case isn’t bad, it does get worse with time. My fingers now type of out of order. My PC is set to autocorrect my most common errors. Live chat isn’t. But this was a special case, and I was *not* going to say no to this request. (it was from 10pm EDT to 12mn at http://purlsonline.forumotion.com/ ). These ladies are book fans—no! They are BOOK FANS! When they fall in love with a writer, character, series, story, they go bananas over it! They tell their friends, they promote the books, and they are so very nice. The chat – while totally fun – was also exhausting. Which explains the fried-brain thing and my inability to be coherent today! I’m Zombie food. But it’s part of being a writer.
PR is expensive. You want your PR dollars to go where they are most useful. Planning far in advance can save a lot of money and time (which cannot be recouped) in the long run. If you are getting a book out to the agents and editors, it isn’t too early to be jotting down notes for future PR.
From my PR person at The Author Pro a bit of advice for tracking online traffic about, me, about my characters and my books:
Why another set of stats? Different stats packages will track different subsets of numbers. Some will catch referrers that others won’t. Some give a little more accurate data on certain kinds of numbers. That sort of thing. I usually like to use the general two stats packages that come with the server, verify with Alexa a bit, and then, only if I really want to dig for the numbers in more detail, use a Google analytics account to back it all up and get more info. FB and Amazon have their own stats data, which we have to reply on to trickle us little bits of info. I’m not keen on what numbers / data either one provides. It’s not enough info.
Track and verify, verify, verify marketing numbers. Always. Never trust one source. Nobody has total market coverage, saturation, and depth. Not. One. Single. Company. Never hire a company that uses only one source for that data either (to buy ads from them or otherwise use them). I don’t care what they tell you! If you’re buying from them, always look at their numbers. They owe you that.
I’ll admit that I have no idea what she is saying from a math standpoint. She tracks my numbers, and streamlines my PR efforts–that I know. I am doing a lot more PR work right now, making sure I am keeping up with what she needs, all this so that I get to do less work and more targeted work down the road when the systems are all in place and all she has to do is monitor and tweak.
I am talking to a book club tonight. I don’t do many of those at Faith, but this one is for Gwen. (I’m taking along Faith’s boots and clothing to show them the difference!) Do I recommend book clubs for fantasy writers? No. Online book clubs and fan sites are the way to go!
And last – book trailers are growing in importance. Our own Todd Massey at firstname.lastname@example.org made these for Mercy Blade at a very reasonable price.
And I have a lot of thoughts how to make the one for Raven Cursed really jump off the screen.
If it sounds like I’m hawking the people I work with, well, in a way I am. They are dependable and efficient and honest. And they understand stuff I don’t. When asked for a recommendation, I give it, just like I’d say Buy AJ’s Will books or Misty’s MadKestrel. I know a good thing when I see it.
That’s all folks!