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Promotional Strategy Discussion > Suggestions to the new contest entrants

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message 1: by Dave (new)

Dave | 28 comments Hi folks!

A couple people have approached me asking about what particular strategies I used for the Nerdist contest to drive pre-orders. I figured I'd c/p my response here so that anyone else interested could take a look at it. Maybe it will help.

Here's my official response when people ask me for advice on how to run a successful campaign:


In terms of things that worked, it was mostly direct requests. The most effective thing I did was tag people on my facebook list. I posted a link to the project page, and then said, "Bob ordered a copy, how about the rest of *group to which Bob belongs*". The tags made people get notifications they had to clear, rather than just hoping the post would show up when they were at the computer. Pointing out the ability to get the credits from both signing up and (now) leaving your first review - effectively making the book free - was nice.

I put up some flyers around town, including in the local library. That may have gotten me another 5 or 10, but not a huge amount. I work at a college, so I put flyers up there, and that was pretty helpful. Between students and colleagues I probably got 50+ supporters.

I had some serious help from friends and family. My book is YA, and my 14 y/o daughter got about 40 of her school friends to sign up. A couple other friends got all their family to sign up.

What didn't work: I went to fiverr.com and had a couple people promote me on their blogs and twitter feeds. That was pointless. Luckily it wasn't expensive either. I twitterbombed media outlets, and got in touch with the local game store and comic convention. Neither were interested in helping me promote. Don't rely on other Inkshares authors to help out (note: not a passive aggressive statement - just trying to be complete). Most authors have already pushed their individual contacts to the breaking point just to get them to sign up for the free book. Expecting them to get their friends to drop $10 on a book by someone they don't know is unrealistic.

Bottom line, funding on Inkshares right now is all about having personal networks. If you don't have them, you're going to have a rough go. I believe in the long term they are hoping that they will have critical mass on the website that books will fund organically, but they're not there yet, so it's up to us to scramble to find supporters. The free book thing is hugely helpful for this.


message 2: by Michael (new)

Michael Sebby | 37 comments Thanks for taking the time to share all this excellent info, Dave! This is extremely helpful.


message 3: by Jeyna (new)

Jeyna Grace (jeynagrace) | 33 comments Thanks for sharing! I agree, it's all about personal networks. I've exhausted mine with The Battle for Oz, I don't know what to so with The Slave Prince. Basically, I'm testing democratic publishing right now. Haha!


message 4: by Alan (new)

Alan (coachmt) | 17 comments Thanks for the run down, Dave. Great info!

Does anyone know if the site is consistent about how it doles out the free credits? I've had people complain that they aren't getting credits after they sign up, fill out their profile, and follow or comment on a book.


message 5: by Yicheng (new)

Yicheng Liu (liu0019) | 229 comments Alan wrote: "Thanks for the run down, Dave. Great info!

Does anyone know if the site is consistent about how it doles out the free credits? I've had people complain that they aren't getting credits after they ..."


I reccomend you to have a talk with Jeremy about it. Inkshares is still a small startup and I am pretty certain that small bugs are going to pop up from time to time, .they probably are trying their best fixing it. But admittedly the credit system is still broken and liable to cheaters gaming it.

So while the system has its flaws, but I believe that if they know there's a problem, they'll fix it.


message 6: by Dave (new)

Dave | 28 comments Alan wrote: "Thanks for the run down, Dave. Great info!

Does anyone know if the site is consistent about how it doles out the free credits? I've had people complain that they aren't getting credits after they ..."


In my experience, people were just not waiting long enough. Sometimes the server gnomes take a little while to get things moving. If after an hour they haven't gotten their credits, there's probably something wrong and they should email hello@inkshares.com That email addy has always worked wonders for me.


message 7: by Alan (new)

Alan (coachmt) | 17 comments Thanks for the responses fellas! I'll keep checking with the folks who were having issues.


message 8: by C. (new)

C. (cbrennecke) | 170 comments Mod
I'd give it about half a day before contacting Inkshares about pending credits. I've definitely seen it take a few hours in some cases.


message 9: by Joseph (new)

Joseph Asphahani | 12 comments Dave! Thanks for the tips! I was already well underway with some of those strategies, some working, some not, and now I know where to refocus my efforts. Thanks again!


message 10: by Matthew (new)

Matthew | 9 comments Awesome info Dave. Very helpful! Thanks!


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