The Goopy Ghost at Cristmas
November 2018 by V. R. Duin

BOOK PROMOTION REQUIRES
TECHNOLOGY ON STEROIDS

One elf asked, “Who are you?”
“I'm Goopy Ghost,” was the reply.
“I fell asleep in Santa's sack
And had a sleigh ride through the sky.”
(“The Goopy Ghost at Christmas”)

Writers must design a book writing website with constantly updated content for book promotion in the digital age, then use social media to drive visitors to that site.

For book promotion of digital age publishing materials, a book writing website can change the undefined to something defined. People are tired of mass productions. They are looking for something unique among the one billion websites and millions of books and videos floating around in cyberspace. They are more interested connecting with people than in reading about books. It is hard to make books appear extraordinary or to build a following for them. Few books offer unique and holistic experiences. It seems that everyone has self-published one or more books, or is currently writing one for future release. When everyone is doing something, nobody is impressed by it. To separate the many unknown writers from the few celebrated writers, local news media will tell self-published writers to come back, once they have a traditional publisher. Self-publishing continues to have some stigma attached to it. Few of these books can compete with the quality of professional editors and marketers at traditional publishing companies. For this reason, the grammar and spelling in all posts and tweets should be carefully checked and rechecked.


Independent writers are not just vying with each other for book promotion. Celebrities and Silicon Valley giants are entering the content production and promotion business. Name recognition matters more than quality of production to many book purchasers. These influencers are creating an experience that garners quick and easy attention. They have an established following. Fans have a strong personal attachment to iconic brands. Fans may feel enlightened by celebrities and want to be aligned with them. For the promotion of digital age publishing, non-celebrities harbor the hope of building celebrity status for one or more book characters through their book writing websites, advertising and social media outreach activities. Writers must connect with mainstream through the uniqueness of their missions, characters, systems and most importantly, their influential connections. Nothing great ever happens in isolation. Connections are critical to success with book promotion in the digital age. Breakout writers stand a chance of selling books and garnering an audience.


Merely trying to hawk books neither qualifies as nor works as book promotion in the digital age. People are looking for something other than books. Augmented reality, virtual reality and mobile or wearable devices drive today's creative environment. Writers must transcend books and become a fashion, trend, culture or voice for the outside world with their book promotion. They must brand themselves as well as their books. Websites, tweets and posts must contain information of wide and general interest. Content that is specific to unknown books or unknown writers is not compelling. The contemporary flair of a flashy book writing website is an expected feature for traditional book promotion, book marketing and book selling. Innovation can make books attractive to technologically sophisticated consumers and search engines. Publishers are reinventing the way content goes to market. Books seem flat and dull for consumers who are accustomed to the Web. Interactive and audio books are becoming the next level of literary production in digital age publishing.


Regularly updated, informative articles with professional insights can help drive traffic to a book writing website. Authoritative content and appropriate keywords prompt search engines and human readers to visit and return. Book lovers want to hear about a writer's innovations digital age publishing. Are the books scented, illuminated, plantable, edible or otherwise unusual? Curiosity may trigger the promotional interest and business participation of an influential individual or organization in a creation that is extraordinarily new. The book promotion must be professional. It should provide a scratch-and-sniff opportunity to sample the work. The numbers and rankings earned by a newcomer's surprising content and quality production may attract big business. Unknown writers can rise with stars, or like stars. Carefully planned and executed book promotion must be designed for the digital age. Writers must do something outlandish, quaint or unconventional that garners notice and earns respect for book promotion in the digital age. Traditional publishers have money, know-how, wide marketing appeal and broad distribution networks. Shoppers who have been burned by poor-quality independent titles may return to the safety of traditionally published books.


As technology changes, for book promotion in digital age publishing, writers must replace outdated and outmoded elements, such as unsupported templates and video formats. Writers must look for opportunities that transform a book from a commodity to an interesting and entertaining experience. Websites, tweets and posts currently define brands for the modern world. Technology offers a measure of accountability and an opportunity to be seen. Innovation may keep a writer's work from landing in the “round file”. Literary agents will scrutinize a writer's Web presence, before agreeing to representation. Measures of traffic to a website and social media accounts are readily available. Mainstream publishers also are influenced by the breadth, reach and scope of this Web platform. The numbers of human visitors and machine bots that hit each page of a website are public information. A book writing website evolves with each new book, event and change in direction. It must be regularly updated with vibrant, new content to retain the interest of returning visitors and machine bots. The number of visitors helps to determine the ranking of a website against the competition.


Over time, writers may add multimedia, games, quizzes and other advanced technologies to draw and maintain website traffic to their book writing websites. Book promotion in the digital age is not an instant or immediate process. It is critical to track book promotion results. Most writers work alone and with a highly speculative product. Self-publishing is an expensive and time-consuming undertaking. Writers need to network to gain allies in the digital age publishing industry. Anything new is considered suspect until it evolves, matures and earns respect. Authoritative, qualitative content has carried keywords for websites administered by V. R. Duin to the first page of the Google Web Search Engine owned by Google Inc. The rankings of these sites soared above the competition, without paid advertising. These successes came after years of development, not days or months. Trends change, making it a constant battle to remain at the top. Celebrity writers generally have a crew of directors, producers, copywriters, editors and tech specialists. Few self-published writers earn enough from book sales to afford payments to collaborators.


As reading falls out of favor, book promotion in the digital age must attract remaining readers and encourage reluctant readers to engage with writers and their content. The genre of a writer's books, the covers, inside illustrations, multimedia programs, participation in events, videos of readings, video trailers, slide shows, excerpts and reviews should generate a constant stream of ideas for book promotion. Longevity of effort helps lend credibility to a writer's commitment. Book promotion should highlight actual accomplishments. Followers may be interested in learning about the conferences, book signings and other events in which they may participate. The prospective audience to a book writing website and social media content is unlikely to be drawn by mere reflections of the unfamiliar published or pending works of unknown writers. It is particularly hard to make an approach seem fresh and interesting when it comes from a remote location and involves an unknown brand of a literary product. Writers must display a far-reaching platform of reliable, accurate and quality information or another proven asset of benefit. Corporate publishers of digital age publishing may be drawn to a profitable writer.


It may be helpful to reach out to bloggers about a writing website. Mention in their articles can become a source of referrals and links. Fans and allied sites may link a writer's website to theirs for mutual benefit. Registering a website in relevant directories and listings may generate traffic. A review of the main referrals of major competitors may provide information about websites with which engagement may be possible for writers. Research and share these important resources with colleagues. Free and paid website analytic tools analyze collective online data for websites or blogs, including those personally owned and administered by writers. If there is sufficient data for the website, these tools can provide valuable information about the year of formation, location, numbers of employees, business category, global and national rankings, keywords, backlinks and much more. Free and paid resources are available online to train writers in book promotion for digital age publishing.


Members of the digital age are in search of celebrated content and successful ideas that can be used to fulfill a personal purpose or with which to meet a personal goal. People want to be a part of big campaigns and big trends. Today's writers must provide solid structures in a book writing website upon which visitors can reflect and from which they can build personal strength. Writers can make themselves known by connecting on Facebook and Twitter. However, social media is a poor book selling channel. Social media giants commandeer digital data. Finding, supporting and sharing popular content lends a sense of power that is not available for the unknown writer in digital age publishing. To share in the limelight, the 99% willingly promotes the top 1% of book promotion in the digital age. Influencers and the big companies behind them have the funds, knowledge and experience to channel their brands to consumers. The 99% gets pushed outside in this concentration of searching, streaming and socializing. An inability to pay, creates a wall that may be shattered through a connection or partnership with someone from the 1%. It doesn't help that books are falling out of favor.


Publishing provides material to present on social media and in a book writing website. An online presence gives the 99% an opportunity to generate a following for material that does not resemble advertising. The aim of social media posts and other Web writing can be specifically targeted to interest groups through advertising. However, the unsolicited and unsafe use of the proprietary data behind this targeted advertising has created a data privacy backlash. This is not to say that writers should not be specific and consistent about their personal branding. “Shotgun” book promotion in the digital age will miss more than it hits. Readers recoil from writers' ego-talking shares of personal links, URLs and obvious customer-stalking tactics. Instead of these self-serving misses, writers must craft content that adds value, connects with influencers and creates visibility. Writers who monopolize feed lines with tags or automated tweets, without interpersonal interaction, are sure to be muted or blocked. More hits than misses may pave the path to 1% status. Writers must work very hard and adjust approaches constantly in effort to reach the promising numbers that mainstream expects of book promotion for digital age publishing. Ten thousand followers generally is considered a “viral” following on social media. Periodically approaching agents may help to open inside doors.


Developing a social media following for book promotion in the digital age is very difficult. Social media site managers place “pay-to-play” ceilings on growth. These tactics greatly limit the visibility of accounts that do not pay to be seen. Additionally, the number of followers may be limited for accounts that do not pay for advertising. Some platforms require the establishment of separate business accounts for book promotions. Active self-promotion to the random person is unacceptable and spammy. It is very easy to “unlike” or “unfollow” a person, place or thing. Social media companies are in business to make money from advertisements targeting their users. To this end, social media management companies may facilitate and encourage departures by blocking or suspending violators of their terms of service. Writers of digital age publishing materials rarely generate sufficient income to pay for advertising. However, payment for advertising on social media may not rival the lure of a quality website content to human and machine traffic. It generally costs more to pay for one advertisement than writers can earn from the sale of one book. People often click “Like” without any purchasing interest. The advertiser pays for these clicks, with no return of the investment.


Profit focused algorithms restrict growth of non-advertisers. Non-promoted pages may find their audiences and fans shrinking dramatically. Across social media, paid content is prioritized. Unpaid content is filtered out by algorithms and content manipulations. Social media platforms favor paid content for visibility. People are in search of information and inspiration, not advertisements. Active participation with retweets, sharing and generous comments about the posts, tweets and articles of other users and may encourage some growth momentum. Curious visitors to websites often come through social media platforms. Writers must be creative and consistent with the development of engaging, new content to win the digital age publishing “game”. Followers may be attracted by views of a writer's workspace, works in progress or by animated book cover, plot character reveals. There are many reasons why writers need social media for book promotion in the digital age. It is an important resource for connecting with bloggers, reviewers, publishers, agents and other influencers. Unfortunately, the backlash against data collection and ad tracking is causing followers to scale back social media presence, deactivate or completely close accounts.


Writers must be aware that deleted tweets are stored in perpetuity by Google and the Library of Congress. Dehumanizing and aggressive content should be avoided. Social media content should be positive, humorous and intriguing to drive visitors to the book writing website for additional information. Writers of digital age publishing materials should not build a book writing website that is creative but hard to navigate, or difficult to view on a mobile device. Mobile devices are increasingly used to navigate the Web. Devices of a shrinking size, with burgeoning content to explore, call for brevity of verbiage and minimization of visuals. Book promotion in the digital age that is not paired with images often loses views. Persons who cannot read the source language, or who prefer to read nothing, may be drawn to the images. Few followers may be in a book writer's buying demographic. However, occasional information about books in a social media post or tweet may attract traffic to the book writing website. Traffic counts are critical measures of a writer's visibility.


Symbolic, photographic, video or verbal digital age publishing content that is brief, flippant, funny, irreverent, ridiculous or unusual stands a better chance of being shared than material that is controversial, grotesque or vulgar in nature. In the digital age, more people are drawn by images and videos than by text. People can process visual content more quickly than textual information in today's short-attention world. The development of recognizable cultural icons may lead to the establishment of a viral social “meme”. From this meme, a writer's brand can become known, followed and shared by fans as they go about their days. Book promotion in the digital age should focus on image and video content. A 2012 National Endowment for the Arts Survey showed fewer readers were turning pages. According to that survey, art was proving to be more popular than reading. Statistics from analytic resources, such as BuzzSumo and Buffer, stress the importance of using visual assets to obtain shares and retweets. A listing of free image sources, important visual marketing statistics and free email marketing courses may be found on socialmediajustforwriters.com.


Increasingly, individual interaction and networking is the province of cellular phones. A website that is not mobile-friendly is ranked poorly, if it is ranked at all by search engines. Google, Bing and other insightful tools are available online to enable administrators to evaluate and improve the performance of digital age publishing websites. Many of these tools are offered free of charge. Book promotion in the digital age should accommodate search operations on a wide variety of search devices. This will help to ensure optimum reach. Voice commands are also coming into wide use for searches made om the Web. Business-to-business, intra-company and professional engagement, work and production may continue to require the additional capacity of desktop or laptop computers. Writers also should be seeking new avenues to create stronger ties in the data-privacy world. It is important to create trust by employing trusted resources for operations within trusted online environments.


On social media, it is important to engage with people and businesses that share interests. The average social media account has about 300 followers. On major social media sites, the participation rate of followers in post activities tends to be low (1-2%). While many writers hang out on Facebook, other platforms may prove better for digital age publishing businesses. It may be helpful to expand to other networking and business platforms. Agents rarely represent creative individuals with fewer than 3,000 followers. Should a writer's account manage to reach 10,000 followers on social media, traditional publishers may accept this number as a “ticket” into their “stable”. Social media can be a great place to engage with others, but beware of friend “fatigue”. Do not overwhelm connections with interactions that may make them feel they are being shadowed or tracked. Spamming people with direct messages to buy your book or to follow you to another social media platform is off-putting. As it is, the average participant has fewer active friends than disengaged acquaintances. Aggressive, self-serving pursuit are alienating.


A social media following offers a gauge of a writer's potential for ongoing visibility and engagement. It is important to select digital age publishing connections carefully. It is not obligatory to connect with spammers or other uncomfortable people. Unknown writers have to connect with influencers to expand their reach. Until they become known, writers rarely generate sufficient income from books to pay for book promotion in the digital age. It is expensive to use pay-per-click advertising or to purchase space in a visible location. Moreover, advertising does not guarantee book purchases will be made. The value of location and interest specific advertisements is greatly diminished by traffic from fake traffic, like bots. People often click adds without a buying intention. Consumers are increasingly unwilling to release personal information about age and interests for use in targeted ads. It can cost more to advertise than a writer can expect to earn from book sales.


Purchasing followers for social media accounts rarely works. The “fans” that are available for purchase, and for incorporation into social media accounts, are generally inactive “shell” accounts. Social media platforms are actively investigating and closing these accounts. They are not real and generate nothing of value to a digital age publishing platform or other users. Fake followers are only helpful to those who sell them. The correspondingly low measure of follower interactions gives clue that the high number of followers in a social media account may be bogus. Social media management companies are increasingly monitoring their platforms for undesirable content and fake news. Due to strict regulations and privacy concerns, social media companies are censoring content uploaded to their platforms. Some accounts are blocked, banned or deleted. Mainstream recognizes and respects the potential in real numbers of followers obtained through quality book promotion and trending content production in the digital age.


Search Engines actively track interactions between sites and social media. Social media companies have bots trolling the sites connected with their platforms. Societal and government forces are pushing social media companies to remove bad actors and respect data-privacy rights. The Federal Trade Commission is regularly called upon to launch investigations into activities that may be unfair and deceptive practices. Book promotion in the digital age requires quality, authoritative content. Old SEO “magic tricks” with metadata no longer work with the advanced learning achieved by machines. It is no longer sufficient to use digital age publishing techniques that are designed to attract search engines, rather than to engage real audiences. Search engines recognize such unethical, unapproved and often illegal tactics as the creation of garbled text by unrelated keyword stuffing, the duplication of content to add length or the copying of content from other sites without proper approval or credit.


Information culled by machines is understood by these machines. Much of this information is widely and freely available to humans. Digital age publishing information is immersive and specifically targeted, making it difficult to regulate. In addition, humans are complaining about content that is of a false, hateful, bullying or vulgar nature. As people spend more time online, some of the large tech companies have released tracking tools and scheduling controls. Bad news seems to travel fast in the digital age publishing world. Bad reviews are worse than no reviews. Few people bother to write positive reviews about products or services. Negative reviews seem to flow more easily in these unsettled times. Many people seem to lack the concentration to control their impulses and focus their attention. Machines are predictable and linear in their programming. Unless content is regularly updated, of high quality production and contains authoritative links, it is not likely to appear in automated searches. Writers can earn a real following for creative work, but it must be presented and executed in the right way. In the process, writers will be required to write far more material for book promotion in the digital age than was written in the actual books.

Book Writing Website

  • book promotion V. R. Duin says:

    Writers—whether unpublished, self-published, or traditionally published—must be informed about, if not steeped in, the technology of book writing websites, blogs, and social media, all of which contribute to successful book promotion in the digital age.

  • digital age publishing V. R. Duin says:

    Writers in the digital age publishing world must understand the basics of book writing website design, including HTML, CSS, JavaScript, graphic formats such as JPEG and PNG, as well as scripting, content management systems, web hosting, and mobile technology.

    • book writing websiteV. R. Duin says:

      The book writing website design and social media must reflect the continuous transformations that technology is making on book readers, writers, publishers, sellers and marketers.