Planning Ahead - The Internet Promotions

Back to my survey regarding my promotional effort next year. So far your input on My Website and My Blog have been tremendously helpful. Hopefully others have benefitted from your generous insight as well.

Today's topic: Internet websites that promote to the reader in general. Great sites such as Romance Designs, Road To Romance, Romance Junkies, Novel Spot, Fresh Fiction, Writers Space, and so on.

#1 Do you frequent sites like these? If so, approximately how many?

#2 Has an animated banner ever caused you to click through to that author's website?

#3 Have the excerpts or contests offered ever prompted you to purchase that author's book?

Those are my three big questions. Please feel free to offer any other observances! Looking forward to your thoughts.

Comments

Constance said…
Beth,

# 1 -- I tend to look at the Smart Bitches site, Romancing the Blog, and Dear Author frequently, (every day) various author sites less frequently- mainly because they aren't updated very much. There are a few exceptions, and I tend to check their sites at least everyday to see what's new. Everything else I look at everyday is SF/F or historical reader/writer related. I like John Scalzi's site Whatever because it is interactive between author and readers. I like other sites because I learn things about the writing process.

#2-- I'll click on a static banner way before an animated one. Animated banners are annoying, flash is annoying, and I don't care for in your face ads. I like seeing the covers of the books on an author site, and having them link to Amazon or an excerpt. Too much clutter on teh margins is also a big annoyance. Ads are fine, but show some restraint. Too many looks like pimping. *g*

#3-- Yes! I read an excerpt once that tickled me so much I went and bought the book. I like getting the feel for the author before I buy, especially if I buy off Amazon (I live in the boonies, internet mail order is my life.) Also, after winning books in a contest on Scott Oden's site, I bought another set anyway and donated them to my library. Best way I could think of to help an author whose writing I like was to help promote and find new readers for them. Word of mouth is a great thing. Now that I've been wordy, I'm out of here!
Cynthia said…
Through Bloglines I read a lot of writers/publishers/reviewers blogs. Way too many actually. The first two things I do every morning, without fail, when I first log into the internet is open one window for email and open another for Bloglines.

I've followed links to author's sites when they've been part of banners on group sites. Whether is animated or not, doesn't matter much. What draws my eye is the attractiveness of the banner, not whether it's flashing or dancing or waving at me.

I've found many new books through the excepts on the author's sites. The contests are fun, but I'd prefer to see excerpts. My local Waldens is oh, about the size of a large closet. They don't carry much beyond the new releases. So, having excepts helps me make decisions. It's a wonderful way to browse a book that I'm more likely to order online.
Gabriele C. said…
I'm totally a fan of excerpts. For me, style/voice is one of the important points and I want to read a chapter before I spend my money - the only disadvantage of shopping via Amazon.

Another Smart Bitches and Romancing the Blog reader here. Generally, I've found lots of good book via the blogsphere recently, by author blogs and blogs that have the occasional review among other topics (there are some for historical fiction).

Giveaways would be cool. I so love getting litte book parcels. *grin*
Beth Ciotta said…
Constance, Cynthia, and Gabriele, THANK YOU! I appreciate your thoughts. They help tremendously. Day by day, my vision for the upcoming year becomes more and more clear. This is awesome. Thank you again!
Jordan Summers said…
Excerpts and blurbs get me every time. :) I don't like banner ads. Never have, doubt I ever will. They remind me of commercials. Annoying commercials.
Beth Ciotta said…
Jordan, I've never bought a book because of a banner and I rarely click through. However, they do catch my eye. Mostly, I figure if they do anything, they promote name recognition. I've done a few. But I'm not sure they return is with the cost. Excerpts on the other hand... ya'll have got my mind churning on how to make the most of those. Thanks again!

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