6 years, 2 months ago Posted in: Blog 0
DIY Marketing is well an essential tool to have unless you have a marketing budget sown up with a publisher. There are a lot of "social marketing" and other tools and in the end most operate on the principle that either you are committed to marketing (ie you will learn how to make it work), nieve (you believe their marketing spiel that magically you will sell books) or lazy. Unfortunately time poor authors often become prey because they don't have time or the knowledge to get to be a committed marketer.

On the surface BookBuzzr, an on-line book marketing service sounds great. Their own Marketing line is – “The Books Market Themselves”. They also claim to have thousands of authors successfully using their solution. Both claims are more than likely to be (pardon my french) crap. On the first claim, books by JK Rowling, Dan Brown, Tom Clancy… market themselves. Books by me and most other authors need a bunch more luck and work. The second claim *may* be true but I doubt it. Some people will be using it successfully, a good portion will be using the basics “ok”. None of them are making a million dollars out of it cause if they were, they wouldn’t need BookBuzzr, they would be supported to the hilt by a publisher.

So with wild claims abounding why would I be putting this one forward to other authors? Well, underneath the marketing guff (they are a marketing company after all) they actually have a good kit bag of tools that are pretty much essential unless you want to spend time (and money) getting even part way on what they have for you.

What’s Good

Two words – SOCIAL MEDIA. Yep you have heard about it possibly tried it and maybe even sold a book using it. BookBuzzr has the tools authors need to make facebook, twitter and email work a whole lot better for them without resorting to pimping your book every 20 seconds in the vain hope someone will buy it. Will you still have to do work – hell yes but you will at least look the part and present like a pro and I don’t mean red light district. These WILL NOT save you much time, some but the real value is in presentation. You may not write prose like Dan Brown but you can at least scrub up as well as he does. I am told turtle neck sweaters do wonders.

The bonuses are actually as good as if not better than the highlight features. They include – time saving integration with Amazons sales system so you know when your book is going well (of course it will be a hit). The second (and even better) tool is a book previewer that allows people to “Try before you buy” in safety but is linked to google so it makes it easier for people to find your book. This is the KA-CHING item on the list get em hooked and rope them in cause your prose is way better than Stephanie Meyers and if only people read it… 😀

What it comes down to is if you don’t have time to market none of these features will be much help. HINT make time for marketing. 🙂 All up, these features are very cool.

What You Can Ignore

They have a number of Gimmicks in the list which I think cheapen the service overall because despite having a really solid set of technologies they feel compelled to hand out the kind of gimmicks that should be relegated to infomercials – “But wait… There’s more!” So in the “free set of steak knives” class they have some games that people can play to get to know your book. This includes the “Ultimate” Book Promotion Tool – Hangman (geez JK why didn’t you think of this, you could have made millions, ohhhh that’s right). After you have finished shovelling your earnings from hangman into a truck, there is also some “giveaway” options to promote your book. Honestly you can giveaway your book anywhere if you want… IT’S YOUR BOOK. Treat them as what they are cheap gimmicks, if you want to roll the dice go ahead but roll it in the knowledge that more than likely it’s going to come up Snake Eyes.

The Wrap

So that’s it for BookBuzzr. If you know your social networking and want to get focused on the things Authors need, BookBuzzr is a worthwhile tool at $15 per month as it will save you time and make you look good. Will it sell you a million books, unlikely but all the same if your goal is a couple of hundred a month it has everything you need to get surgical in targeting an audience. A word of caution, tools are that tools – you still need some marketing nous. Maybe that’s a topic for later.

This Weeks Podcast – Legacies

With the recent death of Science Fiction Author Anne McCaffrey, I am taking the opportunity to talk about the changes in the world that some of the great science fiction writers have made. I also will have some comments from a few of the guests that have appeared on the podcast on the legacies they would like to leave behind.

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