virtualDavis

ˈvər-chə-wəlˈdā-vəs Serial storyteller, poetry pusher, digital doodler, flâneur.
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Why Writers Need Bloggers

I’ve come to see book bloggers as indispensable to authors, especially first-time authors.

~ Miriam Gershow

When Miriam Gershow (@miriamgershow) published her novel The Local News she landed coveted reviews in The New York TimesMarie Claire andLadies Home Journal. Home Run! Or not…

It turns out that even a top drawer print run and allstar mainstream media buzz, the job still fell to her to keep the novel visible and selling. And she did, due in part to her discovery that book bloggers are an essential (and friendly) ally.

One of the most surprising things about book publishing is that after the initial fanfare and reviews and readings… there is almost a deafening silence… suddenly it was my responsibility to keep the buzz going. (Guide to Literary Agents)

For Gershow, and for an ever-increasing parade of authors, the blogosphere and its social media cousins offer affordable word of mouth relationships directly with readers. As the data maelstrom grows louder and more overwhelming, more and more readers are tuning out. Traditional marketing channels are less effective than they used to be. But bloggers invest themselves day after day in cultivating a loyal readership. Blogger recommendations are respected, trusted and acted upon.

I do know that when a book is talked about in the blogosphere—especially by the insatiable bloggers with their insatiable readership—it keeps that book alive in the public consciousness.

Besides, authors have far greater accessibility to bloggers than they do to mainstream media outlets. So time and effort invested in courting bloggers is far more likely to pay off. But that’s not all, Gershow confides. Writers need book bloggers for their delicious soul food!

And… bloggers are good for the writer’s soul… They remind me that what I’m doing matters. And for that alone, they are worth their weight in books.

All Abuzz about AuthorHive


“Create buzzz for your book” with AuthorHive

Generate Some Serious Book BZZZ : With help from the marketing experts at AuthorHive, your book can be the talk of the town. No matter what your marketing experience or budget, our marketing consultants can help you create an integrated campaign to tell your story. (viaAuthorHive)

Yet another sign of the times, shifting services toward writers, empowering the author to step increasingly into the shoes of the publisher. Have you had any experience with AuthorHive or a similar book marketing service? Is it the wave of the future?

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10 Useful Usability Findings and Guidelines

Users Focus on Faces:

People instinctively notice other people right away when they come into view. On Web pages, we tend to focus on people’s faces and eyes, which gives marketers a good technique for attracting attention. But our attraction to people’s faces and eyes is only the beginning; it turns out we actually glance in the direction the person in the image is looking in.

via smashingmagazine.com

This post over at Smashing Magazine shares insightful website usability guidelines for designers and developers.

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What Are Google TV Ads?

Google TV Ads is a flexible, all-digital system for buying more accountable and measurable TV advertising. Using the familiar AdWords interface, you can launch a TV advertising campaign in minutes.

Just a little follow-up on my previous Google TV ads post, and this time it’s straight from the horse’s mouth. What are you waiting for?

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How to Run to Advertisement on Fox News

See video here!

Slate ad critic Seth Stevenson tries out a Google service that allows you to run your own commercial on national TV for as little as $100.

via slatev.com

Outstanding! A new day is dawning. I’m going to check this out now…

Audiences Don’t Pay for Content

Where to Look for Opportunities

When we start with the premise that consumers haven’t paid for content in the past, we gain visibility into new ideas that make sense for the digital era.

It’s not micro-payments alone that will save the future for professional quality media content. On the other hand, the idea that the consumer will always pay for distribution that massively over-serves their needs is not a foregone conclusion either. Paying $2500+ per year for cable/broadband/telephony/mobile in order to gain access to a million times more content than you could ever possibly need is not going to work out so well for the media industry either.

We need solutions that improve the relevance of content for individual consumers without expecting individual consumers to be able to predict exactly what they want. The Internet has exploded the supply of content but digital technologies have only just begun to filter and sample that content for the consumer in an effective manner.

Content providers who used to enjoy control over the method of distribution are feeling a lot of pain but their content remains vital and appealing to consumers. Rather than stomping our foot like Mr. Isaacson, it is better to focus on new solutions that tie content and distribution together in ways that create great consumer experiences.

We don’t know what the other side of this transformation will look like but we have guidance;

  • Look at what the iPod did for music. Think about the critical role of sampling in the success of the micropayment model for songs.
  • Look at the potential of what Kindle can do for print publications.
  • Study the legacy of syndication that makes business partners of the content distributor and the content provider.
  • Look at the popularity of expensive sets of DVDs for old TV episodes.
  • Anticipate what the near-future DVR will be capable of doing.
  • Think of what GPS will mean for the distribution of local and timely content.
  • Think about what Twitter and search are doing to reveal the consumer’s need for specific content at precise moments in time.

It is time to think about distribution and content holistically. Digital technologies are not the enemy, they are an enormous opportunity to improve the relevance of content to the individual consumer. Don’t think so small as micropayments for one article at a time and don’t take for granted the current ability to charge a big fee for massively over-delivering irrelevant content. Look in the middle.

Somewhere in between asking the consumer to buy content “al a carte” and asking the consumer to pay for the whole menu, new “prix fixe” solutions are going to mature.

A Final Word from Our Sponsor

While we are at it, let’s not lose sight of the value of the advertising supported model. We are in the middle of a complex media transformation and a brutal recession. At times like this, pundits like Bob Garfield want to convince us that advertising is dead.

Advertising works. In the digital era, the consumer finds it very easy to ignore irrelevant advertising but they are quicker to engage with relevant advertising than ever before because the Internet makes engagement easy.

Be careful not to throw the baby out with the bath water in pursuit of the goal of getting the consumer to pay for the content. The advertiser remains happy to assume that role so long as we can offer a reasonably scaled and engaged audience. We just need to apply our new resources to help the advertiser better align their message with the right consumer at the right time.

Media companies can create new and better advertising values and it will still command a premium relative to the costs of distribution. Now that digital efficiencies have greatly reduced the cost of distribution, media companies need to look hard at the overhead that is a hangover from the analog era.

Some legacy media executives complain that they are trading analog dollars for digital pennies as advertising moves online. That is a valid concern so we can’t drag our feet when it comes to rethinking overhead costs from analog dollars to digital pennies as well.

We can reduce overhead, improve advertising value and find new consumer revenue models built on interesting combinations of content and distribution all at the same time. We need to be more disciplined about who the consumer is and what they really want as we build our new solutions, but the solutions are just waiting for the imaginations of new media moguls to find them.

via huffingtonpost.com

I excerpted this from an informative piece with sound thinking that I’d recommend to anyone creating content (word, video, music, etc.) for an audience. A few highlights:

#1. “We need solutions that improve the relevance of content for individual consumers without expecting individual consumers to be able to predict exactly what they want.”

#2. “Study the legacy of syndication that makes business partners of the content distributor and the content provider.”

#3. “Think about what Twitter and search are doing to reveal the consumer’s need for specific content at precise moments in time.”

4. “We need to be more disciplined about who the consumer is and what they really want as we build our new solutions, but the solutions are just waiting for the imaginations of new media moguls to find them.”

Novice Authors Must Promote Themselves, Since Publishers Won’t

Poor Kelly Corrigan, first-time author, didn’t get invited to this weekend’s National Book Festival on the Mall to plug her 2008 memoir, “The Middle Place.” She won’t be rubbing shoulders with heavyweight authors such as Sue Monk Kidd, John Grisham or Pulitzer winner Junot Diaz. No major newspaper bothered to review the California mom’s tale about cancer and family and recovery when it was released. Her publisher didn’t send her on tour. All the old-school staples of book promotion — the book festival, the tour, the glowing newspaper review — Corrigan got none of them.

What was a newbie author to do?

She cobbled together a trailer for her book on her home computer, using iMovie software, downloading a free tune off the Web for background music, and stuck it on her Web site. Her agent helped get her on one network television morning show. About 20 friends hosted book parties, which she hit on a self-funded three-week blitz, selling books out of the trunk of her car. A guy shot video of her reading an essay at one of these parties, and she posted it on YouTube when the paperback came out.

A year later, the book has sold about 80,000 copies in hardcover and another 260,000 in paperback, according to Nielsen BookScan data. It sat on the New York Times bestseller list for 20 weeks, peaking at No. 2. That homemade trailer has been viewed more than 100,000 times. The video of her reading has drawn 4.5 million hits. She’s in Washington on Thursday, speaking at the Congressional Families Cancer Prevention Award luncheon. Then she will plow into more than a dozen paid speaking gigs across the country in the next six weeks.

(Excerpted from Neely Tucker’s article in The Washington Post on Thursday, September 24, 2009)

Before It’s Too Late.

 

via adsoftheworld.com

“Before it’s too late.” This advertisement from the WWF is on Ads of the World http://adsoftheworld.com/media/print/wwf_lungs and was brought to my attention by Nicholas Patten (@nicholaspatten on Twitter) in his tweet: “52 Most Interesting and Creative Advertisements.”http://bit.ly/8Mxizm

Posted by virtualDavis via web from virtualDavis’s posterous

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