Tag Archives: facebook

Book Sale Advertising Cost

Not many things cause me to jump for joy, but today as I looked at my book stats on Amazon ranking, I noticed Be Still was ranked higher. How did I get sales? Facebook advertising. But that came at a cost of $30.00. One sale with a royalty of $1.75 at the cost of $30. This is marketing! Welcome.

I’m still not being condescending. As an author and entrepreneur, and non-marketing expert, I have had to experiment with several avenues of advertising. Next month I will try Pinterest as I have found that Twitter has not panned out at all (and was very expensive). Another marketer contacted me today stating they could get my books into the hands of 100 bloggers and reviewers and would only cost $3,500. I asked how many they would guarantee would actually leave reviews and/or blog review, they had no answer. Again, buyer beware.

As an independent author, I will continue to try different avenues of marketing. For now I will set my sights on preparing for the 2017 L.A. festival of Books coming up soon. I did find this venue to be great for making contacts and creating an email list. Sales weren’t fantastic, and I didn’t recoup my costs, but the exposure was fantastic.

Sales to date have been good however, much of that has come at a cost of trial and error. I try and bring what I learn back to my blog but I still haven’t found that ultimate trick to “find readers.” If you have advise on Pinterest advertising, I’d love to hear from you.

Tania L Ramos RN BSN

The Human Prospect

Social media is changing. Better? Worse? Every time I look at how to market there is some new media out there. I couldn’t possibly keep up, not with all the current changes. Read on how to market for indie authors and you will undoubtedly get Facebook, Twitter, blogs, LinkedIn, Reddit, and more.

Many years ago when this was all new it was easy to market on these social media avenues. You were among the first which meant you topped the market when these sites went ginormous. It was like investing stock at pennies and hitting the payload a short time later. But now, you are a small fish in a huge and crowded ocean.

Why stick with social media? Its one of those hideous necessities. In all honesty, outside of blogging the rest of it for me is tedious work. I’m a writer, and I’ve said it before but allow me to say it again: marketing is not my forte. Does it work? Yes, it works as far as numbers go. I posted a few weeks ago how I hit these sites hard and fast for a week and saw major spikes in my numbers, but they did nothing for sales.

Is there a human aspect? Yes. I handed out flyers, bookmarks, and did a few small “vendor” events. These weren’t bookie type events, but more geared toward direct marketing vendors. At times when I’m late on the list to sign up as an It Works vendor, I’ll ask if I can set up a book booth. Most people want their money and allow me in. For the most part, I get to talk with people and interact and hand out tons of material. Most say they use some electronic device now and will order it online. Some do, most don’t, but in the mix of things I am able to sell a few books here and there. Depending on the booth cost, I rarely make my money back, but I sell books, gather an email list, and get information out.

The human aspect of one-on-one interaction seems to fair better than social media sales. Can’t say this is true of all writers, of course when Sparks or Palahniuk posts a new book online I’m all over it…but they aren’t indie. They are whales swimming in a sea of millions of indie writers. Maybe someday I’ll be a whale and my mere presence will command sales, but until then fellow indies, don’t forget to step out of your little writer’s cove and try a new aspect of sales marketing: the human aspect.

links

Tania L Ramos, RN and Author Meeting Other Humans

Follow me on FB, I like back
Read “Be Still” on Nook, Kindle, paper & hardback

A Writer’s Missing Link

Man is in constant search of the missing link! Okay, not necessarily the “missing link,” but that one thing that bridges the gap between point A and point B. In my last post, I wrote that if you wanted to sell a million books, then write a million books and sell each one once. It was sarcastic, yes, BUT the point was that you have to think outside the box.

In my last post [An Empire of Books], I also said that you have to be prepared to become a marketer and publicist. This is true no matter what avenue your business is: writer, home-based business, even a non-profit organization. You may have the best to offer, be the nicest person, or wrote the book that will change the world, but if nobody knows then . . . nobody knows.

Case and point: In 2012 my book, Be Still was published and I became a marketing and advertising fool! I hit every media and outlet and sold lots and lots of books. My efforts continued into the first part of 2013 and I, of course, continued to see sales. Then I stopped. It was exhausting and I needed a break, and wanted to write. The results: one book sold in the third quarter.

Dilemma: I am flat broke! The economy is a bust. I no longer have droves of cash to toss into publicity, book shows, or buying ads. All my numbers were stagnant during my period of absence. My name was no longer out there and I was just another writer under the tag of One Hit Wonder. You see, when you fall off the planet as a new writer, so does your name.

Fix: Since I haven’t been at work, I decided to market and chat up my books again. I can’t always tell sales numbers until the quarter ends, but I can see numbers of hits to my YouTube trailer and book When I Thought I Was Tough. I used those numbers to gauge the results of using free social media. Keep in mind, my numbers had been the same for all of November and December 2013.

                         Before Social Media                   After 2 Days of Social Media

Book Trailer:        1,376                                            1,405
“Tough”Reads:    10,965                                         10,997
“Tough” Likes:     339                                              345
Blog Follows:        224                                              231

You be the judge. I worked day and night to post to Twitter, Facebook, Pinterest, Google+, LinkedIn, and this blog. I wanted to see how much of social media caused a real effect on the numbers. Granted, number of views & likes do not equate to sales. However, it does equate to how many times somebody saw your name, your product, or service. I put in fulltime hours to boost those views, but I think it proves to show that you have to actually put in the work.

Is social media the missing link? Not at all. Hard work is. Go get your audience.

Tania L Ramos, RN and Author Who Found the Missing Link

Feeling Squirrely

As we drove home today from dropping off my daughter it occurred to me that I am not as daring as I once was.  What brought on this sudden notion? Squirrels. Yeah, I said it: squirrels.

Truth be told, I think squirrels are the ultimate thrill seekers. Think about it: How many times have you driven down the road and had a squirrel dash out in front of your car? It’s happened to all of us, right? Coincidence? I think not.

Here’s what I think:

Fluffy the Squirrel: Hey Butch?

Butch the Squirrel: ‘Sup of Fluffs?

Fluffy: You feeling like a round of danger today?

Butch: Hellz to the yeah.  Whatcha got in mind?

Fluffy: Tracks?

Butch: Oh man, you must be feeling squirrely today if you wanna hit the tracks.

Fluffy: I’m feeling kinda nutty. Let’s do it.

The squirrels hang out at the train tracks, watch a few roll by, even leave a few acorns on the tracks and watch them get smashed.  Butch dodges a train followed by Fluffy.

Fluffy: Enough practice. Let’s do this!

Butch gives Fluffy a smack on his fuzzy tail and shouts, “Go! Go! Go!” Fluffy waits until the absolute last moment and races across the street barely missing being obliterated by a speeding car. His little pounding heart is filled with adrenaline as he does an air fist pump and declares, “I am the ultimate thrill seeker!”

So the next time you see a little Fluffy or Butch run across the street you have to say, “Well played little extremist thrill seeker. Well played.”

squirrel

Tania L Ramos, Author Giving Squirrels their Props.

**************************************************************************

http://BeStillNovel.com Free gifts with purchase through website

http://Facebook.com/TaniaLRamosBooks

Giveaway! It’s That Time Again

Be Still is coming up on its one year anniversary in May.  When I started this adventure into publishing last year, I had no clue where it would take me.  I thought I was taking the road less traveled; turns out the Self-Publishing Road is  a crazy, busy highway.  Thank goodness most drivers are friendly and well mannered.

I’ll write a one year memoir in May, telling all the ups, downs, positives, negatives, joys, and regrets of this rocky uphill climb.  Well, guess it couldn’t be all bad since I plan on publishing again this year . . . or maybe I enjoy swimming against the current more than I think.

In honor of coming up on my one year anniversary, I am doing a biweekly giveaway (that’s every two weeks, I looked it up).  The entry date starts today and will end May 31st.  There will be four drawings: 04/14, 05/01, 05/14 and the big giveaway on June 1st.

The first giveaway is for an ebook of Be Still on Kindle or Nook.

The second giveaway is for an ebook of Be Still and Surviving the Writing Apocalypse  on Kindle or Nook.

The third giveaway is for an autographed copy of Be Still in softcover along with a softcover of When I Thought I was Tough.

The big finale is a wonderful goodie bag: softcover of Be Still, When I Thought I was Tough, Surviving the Writing Apocalypse (if softcover is not out yet it will be an ebook), bookmarks, tote bag, pen, magnets, sticky pad, and any other fun stuff we have at that time.

Entry is simple: Use Rafflecopter to be entered into the giveaways through the end of  May 2013.

ENTER HERE

A bonus surprise giveaway will be held on June 1st for anyone signing up for the WritingApocalypse.com email list. We send one monthly update listing new books, offers and events and that is all. Find the email sign-up here: https://www.facebook.com/WritingApocalypse/app_115566291178

Tania L Ramos, Author Surviving the First Year

Help me out friends, family, and fellow authors by sharing this post to your blog, Facebook page, or Twitter feed. Thank you.

A Literary Affair

Over the past few years, I have read more books than I can count. I mean, I ran out of fingers and toes to count on awhile back. Many are great, some were plain awful, others were so horrible, I didn’t get past three chapters. But there have been some whose words were so flawless, whose stories were so great, I couldn’t put down the book: Imminent Danger (Michelle Proulx), Embers at Galdrilene (A.D. Trosper), Crazy About You (Randy Attwood). These authors write so well, all I could do is imagine that they sit behind some mahogany desk (well, not Michelle, I’ve seen a pic of her desk), with a small, dim, Tiffany lamp, a cup of Joe, and a wild passion in their eyes as they pluck away at the keyboard.

These new authors are talented.  They are inspirational to say the least. And it is rare that I feel that way.  One thing I can say about these authors is that they have succeeded. I mean, honestly, the second you type “The End,” on a manuscript and mean it, then you have succeeded and pushed passed the boundaries so many aspiring authors haven’t. Everything beyond that is icing and cream filling.

But a few months ago, I stumbled across a talented young woman whose words took my breath away. She wrote a few blogs; a few short stories about her life, and I was like, “WOW!” Then she was gone and took her blog with her. The last entry read something along the lines of, “I was told to quit dreaming. People with their heads in the cloud get nowhere.” And she was gone, and I was aghast. I hate dream stompers! Haters.

More recently, I’ve happened across another very talented writer. To say I’ve stalked this person would be an understatement. Big understatement. I think the restraining order may already be in the works, but who cares? Not me. Nope. This person writes like Dickens and Joyce (if they joined the Navy and spoke like sailors, still amazing though) without holding anything back. I’m in love with his words. With the way he makes me feel like I am right there: part of the action, part of the problem, part of the bigger picture. Yep, it is a literary affair, but again, who cares? Not me. Heck, I just want to be part of it.

And then yesterday, I received an email from the first woman I really started to follow. She vented in an email so sad, I was blubbering as if I had just read a Dear John letter from a long time love. Her dreams were being held back by a family who wanted her to be a doctor, lawyer, something–anything–other than an underprivileged author. She’s seventeen. WHAT? Of course, it was all she ever wanted, so I did my best to encourage her dreams, telling her I would be there for every question, every time of doubt, every bit of help I could give no matter what path she chose. Because quite frankly, if I can be a full-time mom, a full-time nurse, and still write then so can she (minus the kids part for her). It takes dedication, and sometimes it takes a stranger on the other end of an email, Facebook chat, or Twitter message and so help me, I plan to be there if she needs it.

So, two writers in two months, who have stolen me away with words. Two writers who have seemingly stopped writing. Really? Now, I don’t know if all you readers have ever come across an author/writer who has made you melt, but I have, and wow! I only hope that someday, I get to read a book they write, more so, I hope they write. I tend to monitor chat rooms, and in one online room several authors bullied a newbie, and that newbie left with tail tucked, and the bullies wrote in their nasty little remarks after. I was appalled.

Authors! Please be mentors, not haters or bullies. We all started somewhere, some of us are still a bit wet behind the ear. Help out the new guy. And if there is a great author out there who makes your heart bleed at his/her very words, then please encourage them to continue. I shall continue to stalk from a distance … or 50 yards at the order states, waiting in a perpetual state of anticipation.

Tania L Ramos, Author Impressed

BeStillNovel.com

Facebook.com/TaniaLRamosBooks

Some songs that keep me encouraged. Hope they help you as well:

 

My Fountain of Youth: You

It has struck me that I am no longer in my twenties.  You’d think I would have figured that out nearly ten years ago, whilst leaving my twenties. But internally, I don’t feel like I’m hitting my forties. My brain is stuck on being 25 and in my prime. Then I look in the mirror and . . . eh! Crap, when did I age? I blame it on five years of night shifts, and now on endless future years of never-ending on call shifts that easily turn into 16+ hour days at work.

But I have discovered a fountain of youth. After a night of tossing and turning, and no one to talk to, it dawned on me that I don’t need to spend countless days doing on-call shifts. NO! All I have to do is sell 500,000 books. No biggie right?  This is where my fans, friends, and those lurking from behind a url come in.  All you have to do is buy two books: Be Still and Surviving the Writing Apocalypse.  Then you tell two people (or more, I don’t want to limit anyone), and tell them to tell two people (or more, don’t damper your friends with boundaries), and so on.  Before you know it, I’ll be 50 shades of younger in no time.

After selling 500,000 books and clearing anywhere from $500,000 to $1,200,000 depending on which version of book was purchased (paper back is nice *hint), I can leave my day job, which turns into a night job way too often, and no more sleepless nights. Whala! No more red, swollen eyes with dark circles aging me by years.  No more dehydration from never getting to the water machine (a nursing hazard by the way). No bladder infections from holding my pee because I can’t get away from my patient in a urine friendly timely manner (yep, another nursing hazard).

The binocular has a smile too

Help me stay young

Why, if you only purchase one (or two, give one away) copies of my book, then tell two of yours friends, and two of their friends (etc) do the same, I can be a new person in no time. You’re tiny contribution can be my fountain of youth: bright eyes, hydrated skin, fully functioning kidneys. You alone can be my youthful salvation. What do you say?

Yeah, I agree. Maybe I should try and get some more sleep.

This shameless plug has been brought to you by the exhausted rantings and middle of the night epiphanies of,

Tania L Ramos, sleepy author

Be Still: available on all ereaders, paperback, and hardback

Surviving the Writing Apocalypse: Content help for authors  is available on most ereaders.

Facebook.com/TaniaLRamosBooks      Facebook.com/WritingApocalypse