Just how deep is the marketing monster’s hole?

First, some good juice for struggling writers. Go to Outpublish and claim your FREE 3D book generator tool. Put in you ISBN and receive 9 3D images. Cool! See my feature picture.

I find myself falling, tumbling, spiralling inexorably downwards into a dark and bottomless pit. Or am I spinning, twisting upwards towards bright clear sky/water/rolling savanna? My bearings are so confused I am frankly a little lost. Which way is up and which way is the pub? I think I need a drink.

Today, on my journey up or down, I discovered a well known site for promoting specific time limited services, which is almost the same name as the English colloquial expression for a five pound note. Yes, I really am that innocent! I did not so much discover it, as ‘be directed there by a big sign saying THIS WAY DUMMY’. It was a message from someone who promotes the services of people who wish to promote my service. There are a gazillion promoters, all trying to earn a crust, who for $5-10 dollars will press the special red button they made which will apparently give me instant access (for 3 days) to 300,000,000 interested, engaged, and active customers who are patiently waiting for my wares.

I googled the product, which seems like a great idea for connecting people and services.  I read reviews from 2014 by people eager to use the book promo service/marketing tool ‘before it becomes over subscribed’. It makes sense now why so many fb sites of people with ‘a passion for finding new and unknown authors’ or ‘providing an accessible platform for writers’ are crammed to the gunnels with the same ads. Authors who have paid for a 3 day carpet bombing campaign of the literary landscape. It probably does a fantastic job of driving away civilians, whilst all literary competitors and feeders simply reappear out of their foxholes. It makes sense why the only interest I have had from my own forays into said sites is a smattering of likes and a plethora of offers to help me sell books in a myriad of inventive ways at moderately reasonable rates.

I also noticed, quiet a goodly number of the promoters who describe themselves as ‘experts in SEO – search engine optimisation’ are attractive young women. That is, their profile picture is of an attractive young woman, when they are often male. An overweight, hairy man, sweating in a booth in god knows where (apologies to overweight or clammy men, no connection between the two intended, I was thinking of hot climates). There is a book/thesis at least into why an image of a fresh-faced, smiley, respectable, educated, attractive but not sluttish looking young woman is the quintessential, trustworthy image to project to…..me? Perhaps that’s a little too paranoid and algorithms are not so refined yet. Having said that, i’m sure a lot of self-promoting authors are older people (certainly looks like it to me) who have grand-daughters with Macbook Pros who are, ‘very good on the computer’.

My search continues for the sunny uplands. For that rich un-mined seam of readers who will take me to their breast and cry ‘thank the gods for Wayne and his wonderful book. Our lives are richer and fuller for the read, and can we buy six more copies for Christmas!’ I know, I know, it’s only in my head. But it’s a special dream I reserve for my most deluded moments.


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