Rosanne Dingli

Rosanne Dingli

Sunday, July 17, 2011

How to get web attention

Graph from Goodreads
Statistics are often disheartening - I always suggest to beginning authors that they do not look into how many beginning authors exist, because it would put them off writing forever. The same might apply to those promoting a product on the web, especially if it has anything to do with the written word. There are so many books clamouring for promotion it is inevitable a proportion will never get any attention at all.

Morgen Bailey
Counting the numbers of your competitors is folly, because it illustrates the risk of failure in all its glory. The essence of success for any writer is to write on regardless, and hope for attention from some quarter, some time - even if it is posthumous. On that dreary note, it is quite amazing to see some authors gain attention by advertising their competition! Many authors feel that hosting other writers wins them some sort of note - and it does. Twice last week I found that hosts who had my words all over their sites benefitted in no small way.

The tireless interviewer Morgen Bailey has me on her site right now - she asks some pertinent questions and I had fun answering. She interjects with oohs and aahs and can get quite animated at some responses. She places relevant links and has accumulated a huge bunch of followers who hang on her every word. That's what I call attention. Most of the authors she plies with questions return the favour and receive more web attention themselves by announcing their presence on her site, and so it goes. It's a very effective way of garnering a following.

The e-Buffet
Patrick McCormick is another enterprising individual. Although his web magazine The e-Buffet is still in its start-up stages, he has gathered some momentum, and his 90+ contributors will draw their own followers to have a look at his site, where music, literature and art entertain and edify. Some of what he features is quite good. He has published one of my more continental short stories for all his patrons to read - and read it they do. It is called Strange Things, and the strange thing is that it's getting quite a lot of attention, not only for me, its author, but also for Patrick and his magazine.

It is just as foolish to wonder how many site managers, authors, promoters, publicists and general writers are doing all this, as it is to try and figure how to devise stunts that will bring a stampede of clickers onto any website. Even the most avid number-cruncher will tell you that pure chance plays such a big part in how hits happen, that trying to understand how it happens,  or why, or trying to replicate a rush is a complete waste of time. I know that there are grown adults out there whose entire careers ride on being able to prognostigate, plan, manage and direct web traffic, and I salute them all. But I also salute those who try and do the same with the stock market and the pacing and racing industries. The only sure thing about them is that someone makes some money sometime.
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  1. Excellent, Rosanne. The trick is, though -- as with those who risk the stock market or place bets on a race horse -- to lower the odds against failure as much as possible. Sure there's still a great element of chance involved, but hedging bets and studying form is a better course than playing five card stud with a blind hand. Love and luck. Neil

  2. Hi Rosanne. Truth be told, when I started my blog it was a way for me to vent the frustrations I was feeling as I realized how naive I was in my original thought process. I hoped that maybe somebody would see my blog and say oh thanks, I didn't know that.

    It wasn't until later that I learned that people actually offered to follow your blog if you followed theirs. So I did that. Little by little I've gained followers but I think more because they like my online personality and wish to share.

    I really appreciate the few followers that I have and I try to give them something different to see when I do post. I guess the reality is...there are just not enough hours in the day to do everything.

    Thanks for sharing your blog with us.