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Thursday, February 23, 2017

I'm Going to be The World's Most Famous Author, Here's How You're Going to Help Me!

Move over James Patterson, Stephen King, JK Rowling and EL James, there’s a new kid in town. Well, maybe not so new, but on the way up and I wanted you to be the first to get a chance to know. I am on my way to the top and I will not stop until I’ve become the world’s most famous author. Sounds crazy, right? Okay, maybe it is, but here’s a question, if you wanted to be known for your fiction writing, why would you stop before you were the world’s most famous author?



When you think of it like that, setting the top as your goal is the only thing that makes sense. Obviously, you'll become an NYT bestseller along the way, and make movie deals, and all the rest, but why settle for just half the enchilada? Even if you never quite reach everybody, why not invite one more person to buy your book, one more reader to find out if you have what it takes to win them over! So, that's why I decided, I'm going to be the World's Most Famous Author!

So, what would it actually take to become the world’s most famous author? I intend to find out. Stephen King and JK Rowling are tied at 673,000 Google searches for their names monthly, to give you some idea, that’s about 5x what famous author James Patterson got, and more than double what the inimitable Mark Twain collects monthly. EL James doesn’t even really register with just 90,000 searches, but they all pale in comparison to the master of the Attention Economy, the great orange one. Are you ready to be sickened? Donald Trump’s name is searched 16,000,000 times a month, over a dozen times more frequently than Rowling and King combined, while Jesus Christ is only searched just under 250,000 times each month.

I am sure there are a lot of factors involved in search volume, for instance, not too many who claim to follow him search “Jesus Christ” on Google with any frequency, since their source material likely doesn’t require a name search, and Mr. Trump’s recent victory is, no doubt, skewing the odds a bit. Meanwhile, the outgoing president, Obama, is still pulling a million and half searches a month. My campaign to become the world’s most famous author has a two step plan so far.

The first step, you are a part of right now, write a post called, “I’m Going to be the World’s Most Famous Author” step two also involves any of you that want to be involved. I’m daring you to find out if I’ve got what it takes. The first of my scifi series, “The Complete Beginner’s Guide to Saving the Multiverse” Is going on 99 cent countdown special starting tomorrow, and here’s where you come in! I dare you to prove me wrong. See if I’ve got what it takes! Get the book and read it, let me know what you think. I think you’ll love it, but some of you won’t and that’s okay.

          
                                               Download the book here!


When you’ve finished reading the whole book, and please, not before, leave me a review. After all, I’m on my way to becoming the World’s most famous author and your opinion matters. I’d give you the book for free, but I know two thirds of you wouldn’t finish it, so for less than a McDonald’s coffee, you get in early on the trending literary conversation of the next decade, Mark R Morris Jr, World’s Most Famous Author. Some of you may want a piece of this fame in the making, and I’m prepared to share!

Here are a couple of ways you can get in on it. Get yourself an Amazon Associates account, share my books on your blog and earn commissions! Bam! Can’t beat that, you get to be part of the rise of the World’s Most Famous Author, and you make some money to boot! Some of you will see the benefit in connecting with me and for those, I’d love to do an interview for your blog, or podcast, just message on the form at the top of the page!

For those who think I’ve lost my mind, well, I’m out here trying to earn money as a writer, because my stage directing career took a dive, so thanks a lot Captain Obvious, now, either help me get ready for the big time, or stop bothering those of us who are working to make me the World’s Most Famous Author! Comments? I know you’ve got one! Leave it! I’ll love it! Find me on Facebook, with the button below, get your own Amazon Associates account here! And I’ll be looking for all of you on my many world tours as the World’s Most Famous Author!

Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Tracking my Promotion, Including Some Great Author Promo Tools!



Good morning fair reader! Well, the promotion is going slowly but surely. With no list and no leadup, I managed to generate 25 downloads on the first day, and I’m looking to triple that today. So, in the interest of giving you some ideas of how to move your book from flatline toward the first sale, here is the anatomy of my campaign. 

Mass Planner

I start with Massplanner as my hub

I’ve mentioned it before but it’s the central pin of my entire operation. It allows me to be promoting while I’m writing this. It gives me the ability to create a network of “people” that share my posts and links. It’s great. 

Massplanner is an automation dashboard that works differently than any other automation tool. It allows for the use of multiple accounts to share content across a wide variety of social media outlets. I use five Facebook surrogates, accounts I have logins for that allow me to post my promotional information through them. (I didn’t tell you to make a second Facebook account, just so we’re clear, wink wink)

These accounts are also linked into blogs, Google plus, Pinterest and more. When I set up a campaign, one post might be shared by five people across a half dozen platforms. 

So, here were my results from yesterday

First, you need to hack your Amazon traffic. You can’t KNOW how many people visit your sales page, Amazon will not tell you. But, if you go to Bitly.com you can create a custom, shortened (great for Twitter) trackable link that will count not only the number of hits, but the sources of the traffic. Use your Bitly link exclusively when promoting to allow you to calculate your promotional CTR and conversion rate. 

·         I shared my promotion in 130 places yesterday, including about 100 Facebook groups for book promos, and readers. 

·         From that, I got about 85 clicks on my link, so 2/3 of the groups (approximately, no way to know this for sure) earned me at least one click, I’m sure some were more effective and some got 0.
·         Out of 85 clicks on my link, I earned 25 downloads, or about a 30% conversion rate, again, not bad for starting from zero. 

Promoting to lists of locations will help you fine tune your strategy

I create promotional lists of groups, profiles and pages that I want to post to, that way I can see which parts of my campaign are the most effective, so that I can repeat them again and again. The lists that don’t bear great results can be edited and tweaked to improve the conversion rate. I also make sure I am serving the same content to all of the lists of locations to make sure I am comparing apples to apples. 

So, how long does all of this take?

The set up is the most time consuming part. Gaining access to profiles you can use, then inputting them, and adding them into your promotional groups on Facebook, Google Plus, etc, is the most time consuming part. Once that’s done, campaigns take very little time to set up and zero time to run.
·         Use images whenever possible and mix them up. I use book covers, but I also create illustrations of various aspects of the story. Any program you use to create ads or memes will work for this, I use photoshop. 

·         Make your text fun, funny and engaging. Lure the reader in. Make them want to comment, or click on your link. One line that gets some good response for me, is to guarantee double money back on free downloads. It always gets comments and clicks. 

·         Whatever tool you use to automate your campaign, input your posts and choose the locations to send them to, then start it up and get ready to respond. 

Make sure you engage with the audience. 

If someone comments, or shares your promotion, like their comment, or post. Comment in return. Ask questions, engage them in conversation. Posts with conversation are more likely to catch attention and will rise to the top of the group newsfeed. 

·         Use your surrogate accounts to like and comment on each other’s posts. You can start a conversation with yourself if you’re creative, making it appear there is even more interest. This always draws a crowd. 

·         Be polite, even if someone is rude. The audience is watching your response, if you manage to defuse a heckler, they will be on yours side. If someone is harassing, simply delete their comments, rather than responding in kind. 

·         Commenting and liking also makes posts appear in your notifications on Facebook, giving you even better tracking over the conversation. 

Don’t be afraid to claim credit for rankings!

Amazon has split the rankings between free and paid downloads. Don’t lie, but when you reach the top ten in ANY category, screen capture it and promote it! People like success. They like things that are perceived to be popular and the more you promote your success, the more others will be willing to share and promote it too. They want to be associated with winners. Be one!

One more tool that I used on this campaign to date

Sign up for Copromote. It allows you to boost a Tweet or post so that other users can retweet, or share your content. It expands your audience and gains you new followers. I’ve only used the free version, but I have a friend that swears by the premium version as well.

Tuesday, February 21, 2017

Tracking my Origin Dime Chronicles Promo, Part One



It was a long day, but I think I made a dent in some much needed promotion. So, here’s what I’ve been up to. I finally came to the conclusion that to move into a better paying platform ( Gum road, or Payhip) I needed to leverage the audience building power of Amazon to sell enough books to make the transition. For whatever reason, people will spend money on Amazon, even at a slightly higher price, than on these other platforms. So, I’m moving full bore Amazon. 



At the moment, I’m promoting my Origin Dime Chronicles series, a collection of three novellas that all add up to one novel sized collection, The Complete Beginner’s Guide to Saving the Multiverse. Through the magic of Kindle select, I have two types of promotion at my fingertips and I’m using them both. I can only use one for each book, so here’s what I determined to do. First: a 2 day give away of “Jacked” (part one of The Complete Beginner’s Guide to Saving the Multiverse) 

Then, a Kindle Countdown deal on the whole enchilada! Starting Thursday, The Complete Beginner’s Guide to Saving the Multiverse, formerly titled All Jacked Up until I realized there was too much competition for that name and it also said nothing about my story, for 99 cents! The hope is that the bite sized sample of the 80 page JACKED will lure readers into the larger purchase of The Complete Guide, for a cash price. 

Since Amazon stopped promoting free books, even when they hit #1, getting a book to paid download status, is the key to getting ranked. Also, the Kindle Countdown program has its web pages, where the countdown volumes are listed separately for readers to find. So, what’s the benefit? Same as the benefit of being sold in a small book store, less competition for eyeballs! 

So far, I’m up to #8 free in Time Travel scifi and hoping to break #1! Then, when The Complete Guide moves to Kindle Countdown, I’ll shift the second novella into free give away mode to keep the traffic coming. The final piece of the puzzle, book three, will not go up for discount or free giveaway, making the novel length “omnibus” containing all three novellas, the best deal and hopefully a sure fire seller. So, while I may not make much off the 99 cent sales, hopefully, I will move up in the rankings. 

I’ll keep you posted! Thanks for tuning in. Be sure to share my blog if it interests you and I love comments! Like to learn more about any phase of self-publishing? Message me at MarkRMorris2@gmail.com with your questions! Thanks!

Two Day Giveaway on Some Awesome New Scifi! Multi-verse Fans, Get it Now!

Jacked Part of The Complete Beginner's Guide to Saving the Multiverse is currently on free giveaway on Amazon, today and tomorrow! This is leading up to an Amazon countdown deal on the whole first book in the Origin Dime Chronicles! So, get the first novella and take a free sample. You're going  to love it! Then come back on Thursday to get the novel-sized portion for 99 cents!



When I write fiction, I do it to change the world, and the Origin Dime Chronicles is no exception. Sure, it's filled with twists and turns, and laughs and gasps, and great heroes and cool tech, but it's also going to make you think and feel and reconsider your own existence in new ways. So, why not check it out? You might just find your new favorite author right here on a blog you thought was just about freelance writing!

Wednesday, December 7, 2016

0 to 60 Book Sales in 60 Days Challenge, Day 3, IFTTT strategy.

Today is  day three of the challenge and I managed to accomplish a little. I got the second podcast episode up today, with some strategy for IFTTT automated syndication networks to spread your blog traffic across the web with every single post! Go check out the specific strategy for IFTT and a link to an applet  building tutorial, here.



Following the strategy outlined in this post, you will create over 800 backlinks from your blog per year, or, blog  daily and increase that to over 5000! just by posting on your blog! That's right, one time set up, and forget the rest.

So, day three didn't go exactly as planned, but we are gaining some momentum, I got over 60 new Twitter followers, and was added to four large lists yesterday, just through sharing this challenge.

So, I need your votes on the Gumroad.com or Payhip.com platforms to sell from. For now, I'm on Gumroad with the podcast, because the platform offers me the ability to add a file for each episode, and you can access the whole archive just by leaving an email to sign up.

In addition to the Twitter followers, we gained a few likes on our Facebook page, which is here. Please take a moment to go like it and comment. Thanks!

So, we are on our way and tomorrow I'll share some blog numbers so far and more on the IFTTT network building !

Tuesday, December 6, 2016

0 to 60 book sales in 60 days, without Amazon, day 2!

60 day challenge, day 2 was a success! The first episode of the Indie Pub Academy podcast is up and ready for download here! It was a bit of a learning curve, since I've never produced a podcast before. I do however, have a ton of audio engineering experience from my theater days, so it all came out in the end.



I really wanted to get it up on Youtube

In fact, this was my plan, from the beginning but I had a tough time finding a video editor that would do what I wanted, that I could afford on my zero budget. So, after spending the afternoon dinking around trying to solve this problem, I finally came to the realization that it wasn't a problem and I needed to launch it from one of the platforms I'm considering for the challenge, so, there it is folks, ready for download.

I've set the cost to $0+

As the show progresses, I will probably add a price to access the archive, so get in early and you'll get the premium stuff for free once we get going. If you find the information helpful, or would like to support our quest, please contribute generously, every penny helps.

So, here's what's next

Next on my agenda  for the next day or so will be setting up a syndication network for the Indie Pub Academy blog using a tool called IFTTT.com . If you've never hear of it, you should really take a look. Not only is it free, it is the single most powerful automation tool online, and that is no exaggeration.


For our purposes, I'll be setting up some relays to broadcast every post from the Indie Pub Academy blog into several dozen other platforms. I'll set up some repeater blogs, a few bookmarking sites, and some social media automation as well, so don't miss it! You'll learn a lot.

By the way, if you'd like to read one of my books, they are on sale for Christmas! $0+ pricing on all volumes on my Payhip store, so check it out!

If you ever have publishing, or writing questions, please leave me a comment, and don't forget to vote, Gumroad.com or Pahyhip.com for the 60 day challenge platform? Every comment will be entered to win a free membership in Indie Pub Academy when we go premium, so start talking!

Monday, December 5, 2016

Going From 0 to 60 Sales a Day Without Using Amazon, in 60 Days! Can I do it?

I'm frustrated. Amazon is a cool site, don't get me wrong, but when it comes to selling books, there are some serious drawbacks and other platforms can help fix them.



  1. Low commission, the best you EVER get is 70%, and that's if it sells on Amazon, and it's priced right!
  2. No analytics, so you have no clue how well your offers are converting, no traffic numbers, equals flying blind. 
  3. No contact information, your buyers are really Amazon's buyers, unless you convert them to a mailing list. 
  4. Changes are complicated, discounts are limited, and giveaways are extremely controlled. 
So, I am launching a new challenge. I want to take my books and sell 60 copies a day on a platform other than Amazon. The first thing I'm going to do is choose a platform. I've narrowed it down to two choices, and I'd love your opinion!

  1. Payhip.com, instant commissions, earn 90% on every sale, super simple uploading and changes, price changes, give aways, coupons, affiliates and more. 
  2. Gumroad.com commissions paid weekly, more advanced interface, with product selections based on keywords, and a market place where they share your content with shoppers. 
So, which one would you choose, and why? Leave me a comment, today is Tuesday, by Monday I need to decide which one I'm going to use, so add your comment and find me on Facebook to talk more about it.

For more details of the challenge, my rules, what part you can play, and more, check out my latest post on Indie Pub Academy.