Author Topic: The Top Secret Diary of a Kindle Scout Prepper.  (Read 7744 times)  

Offline Tom Swyers

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Re: The Top Secret Diary of a Kindle Scout Prepper.
« Reply #50 on: January 25, 2017, 03:13:10 PM »
Another thought: Would your local newspaper be interested in running a feature article about your speaking engagement? I've done a few local author articles like that. Our paper has always been more than happy to run something, as long as I write the article, snap a few pics, and send it in. Also, you might consider running your campaign so your event is right smack dab in the middle. From what I've read, that's when some campaigns tend to lag, and the boost from the event and the newspaper article might help you avoid that. Just my two cents :)

Thanks for the great ideas!

I have a front end talk on March 6 with an environmental group.

I think I'll go with this library talk towards the back end on March 26. I'm sure it will be well attended but the audience I suspect will be older, less computer literate, less likely to have an Amazon account, less likely to vote on Scout as a result. But I hope I'm dead wrong!

That leaves 20 days in between.

What I'm doing is creating an ongoing list of items to pursue. It's 14 pages now. I keep adding things as new opportunities open up and I come up with new ideas.  When I get closer to the campaign, I'll prioritize the items and create a calendar for the 30 days using Google Calendar. 


Offline Tom Swyers

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Re: The Top Secret Diary of a Kindle Scout Prepper.
« Reply #51 on: January 26, 2017, 03:05:56 AM »
You start the marketing planning process and you don't know really know what will pan out and what will be a dead end.

My non-fiction selling point is coming to life.

Tip: When writing a novel, try to develop a non-fiction selling point. It will make the book easier to market when the time comes.

My novel (a legal thriller) uses the fracking controversy as a backdrop for telling my story: pipelines and bomb trains. Although entertainment is my main objective, the novel will raise awareness of the dangers of fracking.I did a lot of science-based research for the book. I had two experts review my science to make sure it's accurate.

My marketing campaign: "Fight Fracking Through Fiction."

With the new President's actions with respect to the National Parks Service and the Dakota Access Pipeline, people are looking to voice their concerns. My novel can serve that purpose.

On twitter, a number of anti-fracking twitter feeds have expressed their support for my book already and have agreed to promote it. They have 20,000 followers combined.

On top of that, when the President clamped down on the National Parks Administration twitter feed, a few enterprising employees set up their own account   (@AltNatParkSer) http://buff.ly/2jxwhgn . In a period of 24 hours, it grew to close to 1 million followers. The key here is that they are active followers. (While I have 10k followers, over the years people have given up on their accounts. I don't know how many are active.)

 I am able to use the twitter feature to show the accounts of my followers that are following the Nat Park Service alt account. There are over 250 there and they are people more than likely that will support my novel.
The larger picture is that I have one million potential readers following this account (they are concerned about the environment). Now I have to figure out how to reach them.   

Key: Use the twitter list feature (use the private one) for keeping track of potential supporters. It will make it easy then to tweet to each of them when the time comes. You can also direct message your followers.

You can use either tweets or direct messages.

Key: Twitter limits tweets and direct message to 2,500 and 1,000 respectively each per day. Exceed that, and you can go to twitter jail (suspension)

Workaround: Create a separate twitter account for your book itself. It can cross reference to your author account. It can do the more salesy tweets without alienating your followers. Then you can effectively double your tweets and direct messages.   

Stay tuned .  . .
« Last Edit: January 26, 2017, 01:10:01 PM by Tom Swyers »

Offline Tom Swyers

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Re: The Top Secret Diary of a Kindle Scout Prepper.
« Reply #52 on: January 27, 2017, 04:50:04 AM »
Page View Goal

The page view goal is 200 per day (on average) or a total of 6,000 for the campaign (30 days x 200).

I figure I'll need that many each day (especially the first few days) to get on the hot and trending list.

Does being on the list matter?

Yes. Your book has a better chance of being selected (though not always the case) when on the list. More importantly, if you view the contest as a book launching platform then (win or lose) sure it matters. Show me a serious author who doesn't want optimum exposure for their book? Show me a publisher (i.e., Kindle) that doesn't appreciate an author's effort to market his/her book?

 




Offline cmstafford

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Re: The Top Secret Diary of a Kindle Scout Prepper.
« Reply #53 on: January 27, 2017, 05:50:05 AM »
Page View Goal

The page view goal is 200 per day (on average) or a total of 6,000 for the campaign (30 days x 200).

I figure I'll need that many each day (especially the first few days) to get on the hot and trending list.

Does being on the list matter?

Yes. Your book has a better chance of being selected (though not always the case) when on the list. More importantly, if you view the contest as a book launching platform then (win or lose) sure it matters. Show me a serious author who doesn't want optimum exposure for their book? Show me a publisher (i.e., Kindle) that doesn't appreciate an author's effort to market his/her book?

I'm pretty sure high page views aren't the only thing that drives your book to the hot and trending list. I've never gotten 200 (though that'd be awesome!) and my book has been H and T for most of it's run so far. My highest was 169 and my lowest so far was 49.

I think you have the right mindset, too. I would love to get a contract, but I'm really focusing on using this as a launch platform. It helps me determine what marketing is working, what isn't worth my time, and where my social media outreach is completely inadequate. :)

Offline Tom Swyers

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Re: The Top Secret Diary of a Kindle Scout Prepper.
« Reply #54 on: January 27, 2017, 06:12:54 AM »
I'm pretty sure high page views aren't the only thing that drives your book to the hot and trending list. I've never gotten 200 (though that'd be awesome!) and my book has been H and T for most of it's run so far. My highest was 169 and my lowest so far was 49.

I think you have the right mindset, too. I would love to get a contract, but I'm really focusing on using this as a launch platform. It helps me determine what marketing is working, what isn't worth my time, and where my social media outreach is completely inadequate. :)

Thanks for sharing your stats!

Making it on the hot and trending is always relative to the competition out there at any given time. So it may take more page views or less depending on the books running at any given time.
 
I doubt page views is all that matters too. It's just that the only metric available to us to use.

That's wonderful that your book is doing so well!
 

Offline Tom Swyers

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Re: The Top Secret Diary of a Kindle Scout Prepper.
« Reply #55 on: January 28, 2017, 04:17:02 AM »
Today I will send an article out to my email list about the cover selection process. I will also post it on social media.

Recall that I'm using the cover selection process as a story to build excitement about my upcoming Kindle Scout campaign. This article is the second in a series.

Below are the covers up for debate. Pick one before you read the article. Which one do you think wins in the article poll?

After you pick a winner, go read the article at this link: http://wp.me/p2J3jr-Ws

Come back here and comment if you'd like.


Offline Joynell Schultz

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Re: The Top Secret Diary of a Kindle Scout Prepper.
« Reply #56 on: January 28, 2017, 04:26:17 AM »
Hmmm.... I was wrong. I would have picked the oil one. There's good contrast and it catches my eye. I can't wait for part 3... the humanizing element is so important.

Offline Tom Swyers

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Re: The Top Secret Diary of a Kindle Scout Prepper.
« Reply #57 on: January 28, 2017, 04:36:39 AM »
Hmmm.... I was wrong. I would have picked the oil one. There's good contrast and it catches my eye. I can't wait for part 3... the humanizing element is so important.

Hi Joynell,

Yes, you're right. But what type of humanizing element?

Here's some homework to read before we get to part 3:

 https://www.fastcompany.com/3059450/netflix-knows-which-pictures-youll-click-on-and-why

Offline Joynell Schultz

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Offline Tom Swyers

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Re: The Top Secret Diary of a Kindle Scout Prepper.
« Reply #59 on: January 29, 2017, 03:32:13 PM »
I've gotten great feedback from four beta readers so far. Two have read the entire book. They found some typos and had a few suggestions. But they all love the book.

Lesson: Get the book in the hands of any beta readers first thing before the Kindle Scout Campaign begins. They will provide great feedback you can use before your submission. They will also have time to draft any reviews.

Key: Have them vote for you too. That way if you do win, their purchases will be verified when you book comes out.

Either way, I know I'll have at least four reviews that'll be posted in the early days of publication, with or without a Kindle Scout win.

------
In case you haven't heard, Amazon UK is running a writing contest through Amazon UK.

It's open to new works published with Kindle Unlimited:

https://www.amazon.co.uk/b?ie=UTF8&node=12061299031

Books have to be published between 2/20/2017 and 5/19/2017 with Kindle.

That presents another opportunity for authors of new books.

I thought it might have a UK author bias and maybe it does/will, but since fracking (the backdrop for my novel) is a hot issue in the UK, then I have as a good a shot as anyone I figure.

When I started writing my novel a little more than a year ago, I never knew it would be so timely. It deals with prejudice against Muslims, the anti-science movement, and fracking (pipelines) in North Dakota.

I suspect Amazon will look at books that are selling well during that timeframe.

So that's all the more reason for everyone to try and get a well-launched book with or without Kindle Scout in the next few months.

Repeat after me: Kindle Scout is a book launching platform. :)


 

Offline lincolnjcole

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Re: The Top Secret Diary of a Kindle Scout Prepper.
« Reply #60 on: January 29, 2017, 07:06:52 PM »
Good luck with it!

Offline Tom Swyers

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Re: The Top Secret Diary of a Kindle Scout Prepper.
« Reply #61 on: January 29, 2017, 07:24:18 PM »

Offline Tom Swyers

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Re: The Top Secret Diary of a Kindle Scout Prepper.
« Reply #62 on: January 30, 2017, 03:11:15 AM »
I have now have assembled a bunch of Facebook and Goodreads links where book promotion is allowed. I looked for general groups and ones specific to my genre.

KEY: I don't think these links will generate many page views in the Scout campaign.   

Because the group sections of these sites can be difficult to navigate, I put the links on a Word Document. Now I can keep track of where I posted and when with some notes once the campaign goes live.

I made notes about where I was allowed to post on Goodreads groups. (Sometimes there are specific rules).

KEY: I asked to join the groups now--weeks before my campaign begins. This is important because often times the admin will not grant you permission to join right away. You don't want to be awaiting permission during the campaign. Sometimes it can take days, even weeks. And if you're granted permission during the heat of the campaign, you might not even notice.

With this list, I can post to all forty of these groups in an hour.  Then I can post to them again as the campaign progresses. Also, with this list, I can more easily delegate the task.


Offline Tom Swyers

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Re: The Top Secret Diary of a Kindle Scout Prepper.
« Reply #63 on: January 31, 2017, 04:24:20 AM »
In a follow up to yesterday's post, it seems the Kindle UK twitter feed died quite a long time ago: https://twitter.com/KindleUK
So perhaps they are trying to revive UK interest through this contest.

On the subject of twitter, I have been reducing the number of inactive followers on my account so that my ratio of  followers to followed allows me to follow more during my Kindle Scout campaign.
Following people is a good way to tell people about your Scout campaign either through DM or through welcome tweet.

This tool allows you to unfollow 300 per day for free:

https://manageflitter.com/unfollow

There is a 10% limit of people you can follow over people who follow you. For me, I have 10K followers and am following 5.4k so I have a little less than 4.6k to follow.

I plan to follow 650 per day (twitter limit is 1K)  when the campaign begins. So, in theory, I will run out of people I can follow after six days assuming nobody follows me back. But after six days, if people haven't followed me back, I will unfollow 650 of them thus leaving me open to add more followers so that I should be able to always follow 650 each day.

I plan to use Crowdfire during the campaign to help with the task. It's $10 per month.



Offline Joynell Schultz

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Re: The Top Secret Diary of a Kindle Scout Prepper.
« Reply #64 on: January 31, 2017, 05:24:08 AM »

This tool allows you to unfollow 300 per day for free:

I plan to follow 650 per day (twitter limit is 1K)  when the campaign begins. So, in theory, I will run out of people I can follow after six days assuming nobody follows me back. But after six days, if people haven't followed me back, I will unfollow 650 of them thus leaving me open to add more followers so that I should be able to always follow 650 each day.


I'm a little freaked out to over "unfollow" people, as I've read about twitter locking your account out for violating their rules. Nobody knows at what point they do that though.

Oh, and for my first campaign, I used the auto DM route, a simple, "I could use some help--would you nominate me? It's free" Kinda post and it did work, though most people ignore DMs (but some don't.)

Just my 2 cents :-) I'm loving watching your journey.

Offline Tom Swyers

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Re: The Top Secret Diary of a Kindle Scout Prepper.
« Reply #65 on: January 31, 2017, 05:33:59 AM »
I'm a little freaked out to over "unfollow" people, as I've read about twitter locking your account out for violating their rules. Nobody knows at what point they do that though.

Oh, and for my first campaign, I used the auto DM route, a simple, "I could use some help--would you nominate me? It's free" Kinda post and it did work, though most people ignore DMs (but some don't.)

Just my 2 cents :-) I'm loving watching your journey.

Hi Joynell,

I understand. I've researched the limits.

Twitter limits: https://www.crowdfireapp.com/help

   Direct messages (daily): The limit is 1,000 messages sent per day.

   Tweets: 2,400 per day. The daily update limit is further broken down into smaller limits for semi-hourly intervals. Retweets are counted as Tweets.

   Following (daily): The technical follow limit is 1,000 per day. Please note that this is a technical account limit only, and there are additional rules prohibiting aggressive following behavior. Details about following limits and prohibited behavior are on the Follow Limits and Best Practices page:

: https://support.twitter.com/articles/68916

So, I plan to be under 1,000 follows a day.  I won't unfollow for 6 days. Hopefully, that will keep me out of twitter jail.

Nice to have you along for the ride!

Tom

 

Offline Joynell Schultz

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Re: The Top Secret Diary of a Kindle Scout Prepper.
« Reply #66 on: January 31, 2017, 07:26:07 AM »
So, I plan to be under 1,000 follows a day.  I won't unfollow for 6 days. Hopefully, that will keep me out of twitter jail.

Have you found anything on the amount of people you can UNFOLLOW? That's what scares me. Side note: I wonder what twitter jail is like. Who'd be there with me? I hope some little blue birds.

Thanks for having me along for the ride!
Joy

Offline Tom Swyers

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Re: The Top Secret Diary of a Kindle Scout Prepper.
« Reply #67 on: January 31, 2017, 06:46:54 PM »
Have you found anything on the amount of people you can UNFOLLOW? That's what scares me. Side note: I wonder what twitter jail is like. Who'd be there with me? I hope some little blue birds.

Thanks for having me along for the ride!
Joy

Hi Jynell,

Twitter does not offer this information.

My research does indicate anything definitive. Twitter does not have a rule for unfollows.

I have done 300- 350 each day for the past few days and no problems. BUT I am not aggressively following in return. So I am not churning accounts. That type of behavior is aggressive and might trigger jail. . To Twitter, it looks like I'm cleaning up my account--something that happens quite often

I want to clean house now before the campaign begins so that problem is less likely at the outset of the campaign.

I think more will be allowed now for me because I'm not really following anyone in return.

Hope that helps!


Offline Joynell Schultz

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Re: The Top Secret Diary of a Kindle Scout Prepper.
« Reply #68 on: February 01, 2017, 02:21:23 AM »

I think more will be allowed now for me because I'm not really following anyone in return.

Hope that helps!


Yup. That helps. Thanks!

Offline Tom Swyers

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Re: The Top Secret Diary of a Kindle Scout Prepper.
« Reply #69 on: February 01, 2017, 03:42:45 PM »
This morning, I followed up with my beta readers I haven't heard from. I wanted to make sure they were able to download the book.

The feedback has been wonderful. I'm taking the feedback and grammar/typo catches and rewriting my manuscript. I'm openly thinking about using beta reader quotes in the marketing of the campaign.

Key Again: Get thee book to beta readers well before a campaign starts. Win or lose with Kindle Scout, it's going to help you garner reviews during the first month of publication on Amazon when the algos show you the most love.

-----

Today I was invited to join a twitter group. It's an anti-fracking group made up of different accounts out of the UK. I've never been a part of a twitter group. I've been supporting them and they've agreed to support my campaign since my book has an anti-fracking theme to it. Collectively all 26 of them have 50k active followers.

---

Since there seems to be a shortage of reputable services to promote a Scout campaign, I contacted one I've had a relationship with over the past few years and they've agreed to do an experimental email blast with my Kindle Scout campaign to see if they can generate page views for free.

I've also done this with a firm out of New Zealand who I've helped over the years. He will send out a blast to his subscribers as well.

I have also helped a weekly newsletter publisher over the years and he has agreed to run a Kindle Scout campaign pitch for me every week while the campaign is running. 

Key: If you have such a relationship with a promotional firm or someone else, contact them and see what you can arrange. Tell them how Kindle Scout works and see what happens. Think outside of the box. Time to call in all favors.

Today's tip: Don't only use a #kindlescout hashtag on twitter. Only other authors really see those. Use something more if you have room. #iartg #asmsg #bookboost are some.
   
« Last Edit: February 02, 2017, 03:05:33 PM by Tom Swyers »

Offline Tom Swyers

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Re: The Top Secret Diary of a Kindle Scout Prepper.
« Reply #70 on: February 02, 2017, 03:14:44 PM »
Twitter Test

Today I ran a twitter test. I followed readers interested in thrillers and people who are a part of the anti-fracking movement.
Anyone who followed back was given the same DM about my upcoming novel. I asked for a response DM if they were interested in receiving more information about the book.

Findings: The anti-fracking group was far more excited about it and far more willing to support it.

Takeaway: I'll likely target them first and foremost in the Kindle Scout Campaign as opposed to targeting it towards general thriller readers.     

Offline Tom Swyers

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Re: The Top Secret Diary of a Kindle Scout Prepper.
« Reply #71 on: February 03, 2017, 06:25:51 AM »
Working on my advertisements today.

I use: http://www.fotor.com/

It's free.

Hit "design."

Then choose media type: facebook post, etc.

OR choose "custom' and set pixel size desired by unlocking size and entering your own dimensions.

Refer to this cheat sheet for size requirements:

https://makeawebsitehub.com/social-media-image-sizes-cheat-sheet/

Drag and drop images. Fit to size.

Add text.

Save to PC.

Done!



Offline Tom Swyers

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Re: The Top Secret Diary of a Kindle Scout Prepper.
« Reply #72 on: February 04, 2017, 06:59:39 AM »


I'm posting the article below on social media today and emailing it to my mailing list. I'm trying to build a little buzz about the book. I don't expect much response. But I'm trying to lay the groundwork for my campaign yet to come

If you've thought about whether or not to use a character's face on your book cover, you might be interested in reading it.

Pick out the book cover do you like better from the two above. Now read the article to see which one readers chose in this article and why:

http://wp.me/p2J3jr-WN



The results may surprise you.

Comment here if you'd like.

« Last Edit: February 23, 2017, 09:14:49 AM by Tom Swyers »

Offline Tom Swyers

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Re: The Top Secret Diary of a Kindle Scout Prepper.
« Reply #73 on: February 06, 2017, 03:17:07 AM »
Yesterday, I worked on a book trailer for the Kindle Scout Campaign.

Over the past several weeks, I've researched various ideas and I've shared them here.

Time for some vacation.

While away, I'll  develop some type of plan from my written outline. I want to make a to-do list for what I want to accomplish each day of the campaign once it starts. 


Offline Tom Swyers

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Re: The Top Secret Diary of a Kindle Scout Prepper.
« Reply #74 on: February 17, 2017, 03:45:29 AM »
Back from vacation, it's back to work prepping for my Kindle Scout campaign.

While away, I read my manuscript one more time and corrected anything that was missed during the editing process. The most common error was an extra space at the beginning of a sentence. 

I've decided to push back the start of my campaign from February 20th until March 1st because I have two speaking appearances that I want to make sure fall within the 30-day campaign window.

Today's Tip: I've decided that I will use SmartUrls for my links to my scout campaign. I can create them now and then replace the destination for the link to my Kindle Scout campaign page when I receive that link. In a few keystrokes, I can then change the linked destination of all of my flyers, facebook advertisements, drafted tweets without having to do it manually once the campaign begins. It also allows me to get facebook ads or google ads approved before the campaign so there is no time waiting for approval once the campaign begins. I can also create twitter cards now. The links are customizable so you can do some pretty cool things with them like create a call to action in them or advertise your book through them. If you create different ones for different posts or ads, you can see what's working and what's not during the campaign.

I will use SmartUrl as my service:

https://manage.smarturl.it/

It's free and keeps track of clicks.

Key: No matter what service you choose, make sure you can change the destination link.  Some services will do it, but only with paid plans.