The Goopy Ghost at Cristmas
November 2017 by V. R. Duin

BOOK PROMOTION

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”)

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

A Book Writing Website can change the undefined to something defined. People are tired of mass everything. They are looking for something unique among the one billion websites and millions of books floating in cyberspace. By adding a contemporary flair to traditional book promotion, book marketing and book selling, a flashy website design can make books attractive to technologically sophisticated consumers and search engines of the digital age. Regularly updated, informative articles and professional personal reflections can help drive traffic to a book writing website. Contemporary content and appropriate keywords prompt search engines and human readers to return.

As technology changes, writers must replace outdated and outmoded elements, such as unsupported templates and video formats. Websites define brands for the modern world. Literary agents will scrutinize our Web presence, before they will agree to representation. Mainstream publishers also are influenced by our Web platform. A book writing website evolves with each new book, event and change in direction. We may add multimedia, games, quizzes and other advanced technologies to draw and maintain website traffic. Content, without advertising, has carried several keywords for V. R. Duin websites to the first page of the Google Web Search Engine owned by Google Inc.

As reading falls out of favor, book promotion must attract remaining readers and encourage reluctant readers to engage with our vibrant content. The genre of our books, the covers, inside illustrations, videos of readings, video trailers, slide shows, excerpts and reviews should help generate ideas that turn our book writing websites and social media into accurate reflections of our book content. This said, we do not want to build a book writing website that is creative but hard to navigate, or difficult to view on a mobile device. Many people now are using mobile devices to navigate the Web. Devices of an increasingly small size, with burgeoning content to explore, call for brevity of verbiage and minimization of visuals.

Publishing provides material to present on social media, where we have an opportunity to generate a following for our work. Those who are not celebrities often harbor the hope of building celebrity status for one or more book characters. Celebrities garner a quick and easy following. The rest of us have to work very hard to reach the numbers that mainstream expects of us. Ten thousand generally is considered a “viral” following on social media. Getting there starts slowly, but momentum tends to build. Writers must be creative and consistent with content to win this “game.” A social media following offers a gauge of a writer's visibility and engagement with others. Social media content must be a solid, but brief reflection of a writer's style, genre and content.

Symbolic, photographic, video or verbal content that is brief, funny, ridiculous or unusual stands a better chance of being shared than subjects that are controversial or vulgar in nature. With any luck, this cultural icon will become a viral social “meme” around which we can further develop our brand. Lengthy texts and oversized images are rejected across the Web. Scrolling and panning are frustrations that few viewers are willing to undertake. Long and confusing productions of any nature are unlikely to maintain attention through to completion. Attention is subject to wandering. All of us are seeking solid structures upon which to reflect and from which to build personal strength.

The average social media account has approximately 300 followers. Agents rarely represent creative individuals with fewer than 3,000 followers on major social media sites, because the participation rate of followers in post activities tends to be low (1-2%). Additionally, followers often leave. Social media networking companies also have been known to delete accounts and followers from small business accounts. When a writer's account reaches 10,000 followers on social media, traditional publishers may accept this number as a ticket into their ‘stable’.

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. The correspondingly low measure of follower interaction gives clue that the high number of followers in a social media account may be bogus. Fake followers are only helpful to those who sell them. Mainstream recognizes and respects real numbers. Search Engines now are more influenced by interesting content than by old SEO “magic” with metadata. Writers can earn a real following for creative work, but we have to do it the right way. In the process, we will write far more material for book promotion than we will write in our books.

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  • 3 comments

    • book promotion admin says:

      Writers—whether unpublished, self-published, or traditionally published—must be informed about, if not steeped in, the technology of the on-line world, especially the creation and maintenance of websites, blogs, and social media, all of which contribute to successful book promotion.

    • digital age admin says:

      Writers in the digital age must understand the basics of 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 websiteadmin says:

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