Some people have asked me how I manage to promote things so well, which has seemed to draw people to the DimeStore site to sign up and vote… Maybe it has even helped to draw more competitors to the competition. I was telling Sam (one of the judges) the other day that you never really know what people are reading out there. There’s rarely feedback on the web, just hits, so if people are reading and end up listening to you, that’s great!
Below is what I posted today on the DimeStore site in hopes of helping my fellow competitors get the same level of “hits” in the competition.
I’ve been called a promotion machine by a few people, so I thought I’d go ahead and share my “tricks” with everyone. Fair warning, though, that there is some work involved. It has also been asked “when do I sleep?” Well, I don’t know… Anyway, below are some of the places I go, some of the things I do, etc, to help promote the competition and my project. My only request since this is something that everyone will probably take advantage of (in a good way) is that in forums outside of DimeStore, maybe we should post a thread for the competition as a whole and then individually post in comments, pictures, etc, to try and sell our projects with our words associated with what has already been submitted in the competition.
I bet the judges and/or Ian might have some pearls of wisdom to chime in as well as other competitors old and new, so please chime in.
1. If you don’t have a FaceBook account, get one silly!
2. Start a FaceBook Group for your project. This has been the single BIGGEST draw for Faction on the web, I think. Some of the voters of Faction came from the FB group and many of them weren’t my friends on FaceBook before the competition. DO NOT UNDERESTIMATE THE POWER OF FACEBOOK!
3. Update your Facebook group regularly.
4. Invite Facebook friends to your Facebook group.
5. If you don’t have a lot of friends on FB, let the system recommend them to you and just suck ‘em up. The system will give you a warning if you do too many at a time, but I didn’t have a FB account a month ago and now I have like 500 friends. The cool thing is I get a lot of messages from people now and I’m networking… I’ve even started to make industry contacts, which is SWEET!
6. If you don’t already have a blog, get one… Post whatever’s going on in your little slice of comic world. You can tie the blog to FaceBook with a widget, which has worked well for me. I have 40-something people following my blog, but mainly because I keep updating it with interesting things, not just “walked the dog today”.
7. ProjectWonderful.com is awesome… I set up an account on there, made an ad and managed to get my ad on several sites for free. You get outbid regularly, but if you keep up on it, you can have ads circulating over a bunch of sites for nothing. If you have a few bucks to throw in, you can find some medium to high traffic sites to put ads on for not too expensive. I posted on several sites and figured out which ones were getting the most click thru’s (people to site and actually click on banner) versus cost. I have one site which around 20 people have clicked thru in just a couple of days, which is great, and I’m only paying about $0.11 per day for that one. Others after a couple of days I took off the bid because I was paying up to $0.50 per day and wasn’t getting the hits. Just because my ad works on one site might not mean another book’s would, you just have to see. I put $10 in there and now have a couple of ads on my blog so I can get some funds into the account that way. Once my $10 is gone, I need to see if it was worth it.
8. Regular updates in the forums. I don’t know if you read through things, but I’ve become a member of the community on DimeStore… It wasn’t a pre-meditated attempt to integrate, I just found the conversations interesting and wanted to learn everything I could about the industry. Along the way, I’ve found that a lot of the people are really really cool.
9. Other forums. I have a DeviantArt account where I post images for the project when I think about it, a journal which I update from time to time, etc. Also, there’s CBR, the Wizard Forums, Comic Careers, PencilJack, DigitalWebbing, etc etc etc…. When I post on the forums, I’ve been pretty good about just promoting the contest as a whole and whole-heartedly believe that should be the intent on those sites… What I’m afraid of is that if we are all posting on the same forums, we’re going to saturate the forums and people will get turned off by the whole thing. If we have a single thread for SPI Round 2, for example, communicate it here, and all have a chance to post some details on our project from our perspective for people to check out, link to the competition, etc, I think it would benefit all of us VERY well. Just my opinion.
10. Twitter? Actually, I don’t have an account and probably won’t get one, but it has seemed to help a number of people spread the word.
Anywho, I hope this helps everyone AND that people take advantage of the recommendations. We all want to win, but the competition isn’t all about winning, it’s about joining a community, embracing and being embraced by it, and helping to introduce people who don’t know about the competition or Small Press in general what it’s all about. Anything we can do to get someone to look at ANY project is a win for the community.