Tuesday, August 2, 2016

Advertising . . . dammit!!

Soooo . . . . the problem, me buckoo;  How do you lift something you've written up into the Top 100 in sales?  How do you pluck your book title out of the vast quagmire of about 10,000 other titles published per month and shine that proverbial beam of light toward it so
everyone can see.

I think I have the answer . . . and you ain't gonna like it.


That's the answer.  As it's the usual answer for a lot of our hardships to get out of . . . Money.

But if you're a small-fry writer like I am, when we talk about anything over five-bucks, we're getting far too rich for our thin blood.  The air starts to get thinner;  we've get this rash that suddenly covers our posterior when we talk about something six-bucks are higher in cost.  Why . . . even buying a full meal for two at McDonalds may require a bank loan.  Which we don't want, thank you very much.

But the harsh truth is . . . you want to be a well known writer?  It's gonna cost you some advertising dough.  And probably more dough than you've got the bank account to pay for it.

What I find interesting is that most small time, middle-grade, and even large publishing houses won't put a plug  nickle down in advertising until you have some real STAR POWER behind your name. (with the exception, possibly, to those writers they've lavished huge signing bonuses onto to . . . you know, the ones that gets way above $100,000 or more.  Now they've got a vested interest in getting a return for their investment).

So, if you're just a GOOD writer, or maybe a GREAT writer waiting to be discovered, it falls upon your shoulders to cough up the coin to do your own advertising,  And there in is the rub . . .

'Cause, if you're like me, the number of struggling writers you know who have more than two nickles to rub together is about the same number of multi-million dollar Power Ball lotto winners you know.  Meaning . . . you don't know any, fella.

I have a new book out.  While the Emperor Slept. (it's over on the right hand column to check out if you want to).  The first of a series.  Features a 1st Century Roman detective/assassin who is intriguing to know.  Or at least, I think so.  The publisher who has it out is a great company.  I'm hoping we can work for years together churning out this series.  But for now, the advertising is on my shoulders.

So far I can say that the small . . . and I do mean small . . . amount of money I've spent on advertising has had a discernible reaction to the book's ranking.  I suspect more money, in this case, would mean a larger response.\

Didn't James Patterson do something like this in the beginning of his career?  Being an ex-advertising exec he went out and did an entire campaign blitz on a book of his, all own his own.  And it worked.  Worked so well his publisher made gobs of money and decided to do the advertising themselves.

It can be done.

And I'm thinking maybe $2,000 might be the tipping point.  Or, maybe more like $20,000.  Or maybe more.

Hell.  How the hell should I know?!  Remember, I'm the guy who has just two nickles in his pocket.  Well . . . a nickle and possibly five pennies.  Maybe.

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