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Thread: Is this even feasible? And if so, how?

  1. #1
    New Fish; Learning About Thick Skin
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    Is this even feasible? And if so, how?

    I'm an online marketer with a new client, an author published by Amazon Digital Services. She has asked me to sell 75 of her e-books by Christmas.

    To me, this seems like a lot. To her...well, she's surprised that almost a week has gone by and not a single sale has been made by me.

    I have been posting to her FB (not just links to her book either, but articles in her genre, etc), Tweeting on her behalf (again, joining in conversations and not just advertising her book, but I do post links to people that genuinely seem fit to buy it), asking related online presences to consider posting links to her website, etc.

    So is it me? Or is expecting 75 sales in about three weeks unreasonable?

    Any advice would be appreciated!
    Last edited by SoftSnowflake; 12-06-2012 at 11:58 PM.

  2. #2
    crazy mean SuperModerator Old Hack's Avatar
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    You're the online marketer; you've taken on this client and by doing so, have promised to achieve what she wants. So you tell us.

    If you're having to ask us if this is feasible then you've taken your client's money without knowing if you can provide the service you're charging for. And that's not on.

  3. #3
    New Fish; Learning About Thick Skin
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    No, I'm not getting paid until/unless I achieve the goal. Not sure why you jumped to the conclusion that I already took the money and am only now wondering if I can provide the service, but that's not the case.

    I'm asking you all for advice as to how to achieve it and whether making this amount of book sales in this time frame is reasonable or if I should rework the agreement.

  4. #4
    The 1st Rule of Write Club: Write! Jamiekswriter's Avatar
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    What's the price of the ebook? And how long is the book? What's the genre?
    How many Facebook followers & Twitter followers does she have? How many do you have?

    To answer your original question. Nope. 75 is not an unrealistic number to sell by Christmas, providing the story is professionally edited, has a good cover, has a decent price point and adequate length for the price, and, of course, a compelling story.
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  5. #5
    New Fish; Learning About Thick Skin
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    It's selling for $6.50. About 800 words in length. Fantasy genre.

    She didn't have a Twitter at all until I set her up with one.

    She also barely had a Facebook page until I set it up better a couple days ago.

    Personally, I have about 3,000 friends on Facebook and 600 followers on Twitter. I've been spending at least five hours a day marketing it online this past week. Still, no one is really biting yet.

  6. #6
    volitare nequeo AW Moderator veinglory's Avatar
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    I think you aren't going to get paid, should stop working for free, and severe the relationship with the client right now.

    $6.50 for 800 words? Unless it explains where the Lindbergh baby is you ain't gonna sell a single copy, let alone 75.

  7. #7
    The 1st Rule of Write Club: Write! Jamiekswriter's Avatar
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    Oh.

    Yeah, with a $6.50 price tag for 800 words. . . I'm going to have to change my answer to no. You probably won't get a lot of takers outside of friends and families.

    Most short stories are going for $0.99 and that's for about 12,000 words give or take. Heck, full novels are going for $2.99.

    Any chance, she'd lower the price to $0.99? It would increase your odds of people buying it.
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  8. #8
    volitare nequeo AW Moderator veinglory's Avatar
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    Unless it has a shocking blurb, hideous or missing cover, and clearly sucks. Which given the pricing the author chose, I would not rule out.

    You can only sell people things they want to buy.

  9. #9
    The Crazy Man in the Sun. Feel me. WillSauger's Avatar
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    I just have to say, I was about to head off to bed, and reading "$6.50 for 800 words", I just instantly shocked myself to stay up a couple more hours.

    I'd be on the fence about paying $6.50 for a 500 page Fantasy novel that I liked for a digital copy. I really wouldn't pay more than a few cents for 800 words.
    I always liked the idea that short stories under 2000 words should be free. It's a great way to show off your writing skills and pull in a reader for a novel.


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  10. #10
    Roofied by Rylan Bloo's Avatar
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    just going to echo what everyone else said, $6.50/800 words is wayyyyyy too much. I've never paid more then 9.99/ebook and that was for a big name author I really liked and was for a full length.

    Discuss with your client about dropping her price or cutting your losses. It sounds like (if the author set the price) her expectations are too much.
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  11. #11
    Cultus Gopherus MacAllister SuperModerator Medievalist's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SoftSnowflake View Post
    It's selling for $6.50. About 800 words in length. Fantasy genre.
    800 words for $6.50? Is that a typo for 80,000 words?

    800 words is almost cover copy and frontmatter. It's not a novel.

    Assuming it's a typo, you need to have a really really good book.

    You need to have landing pages at the retailers with fabulous copy, and an excerpt that so fills the reader with narrative lust that they'll shell out the money to find out what happens next.

    But I think you should apologize for promising something you can't deliver.

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  12. #12
    Maybe I should see someone . . . Tigerlilly79's Avatar
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    I'm sorry but $6.50 for 800 words is crazy. She's going to have to lower her price drastically for people to buy her story.
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  13. #13
    Mushroom Polenth's Avatar
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    If I were starting a marketing firm, I'd set my offerings to concrete and controllable things. Like set up a Twitter account, write a certain number of blog posts, set up a blog tour with ten stops, etc. Basing payment on a sales target isn't sensible if you want to earn a living. A lot of the things people will pay you to market simply won't be that great, so they won't get the sales.
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  14. #14
    crazy mean SuperModerator Old Hack's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SoftSnowflake View Post
    No, I'm not getting paid until/unless I achieve the goal. Not sure why you jumped to the conclusion that I already took the money and am only now wondering if I can provide the service, but that's not the case.

    I'm asking you all for advice as to how to achieve it and whether making this amount of book sales in this time frame is reasonable or if I should rework the agreement.
    You've taken on the assignment, right? So even if you haven't taken any money yet, you've still taken on a job you aren't confident you can do. The time to ask your question was before you agreed to do the job, not after.

    And I agree with the others, the price-point and length of book combined makes it highly unlikely that this book will sell any copies, let alone 75.

  15. #15
    Writer is as Writer does Terie's Avatar
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    Most self-published books don't sell 75 copies ever. Which is a fact you should have known before you opened a business as a marketer for self-published books.
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  16. #16
    Edited: I was in two minds whether to leave this post up because I really, *really* like telling people what they should be doing, but as OH points out, this post shouldn't have contained any information you already don't know. If this were a thread in BRBC, I wouldn't be giving you any advice about this.

    The bottom line is that you are charging to do a job. You should know how to do that job.

    So, with regret, I've consigned this to the ether.
    Last edited by Theo81; 12-07-2012 at 04:06 PM.

  17. #17
    crazy mean SuperModerator Old Hack's Avatar
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    Theo, it's really kind of you to give the OP all that very useful advice and help, but if she is an "online marketer" then she should know all that stuff already.

    And if she isn't, then she shouldn't be presenting herself as one, to us or to her clients.

  18. #18
    Your Genial Uncle Absolute Sage James D. Macdonald's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by SoftSnowflake View Post
    It's selling for $6.50. About 800 words in length. Fantasy genre.
    A self-published short-short by an unknown for $6.50? Your client will be lucky to get 75 sales between now and the heat death of the universe, let alone by this Christmas.

    She should combine it with nine other stories and sell them for $0.99 for the lot. Even then it'll be scraping it.

  19. #19
    Smooth Operator TheKoB's Avatar
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    Looooool, I wouldn`t even pay that much for a single Shakespeare story.
    Your client should revise the pricing model, take a deep breath and return to reality.

  20. #20
    Boldly going nowhere in particular. Jess Haines's Avatar
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    There are plenty of online places where you can get flash fiction of that length for free, like www.everydayfiction.com. I can't see any author, let alone an unknown, selling a short story of 800 words for that price point.

    I sincerely hope that 800 was a typo. Even if it should have read 8,000, it's unlikely any sales would be made. At 80,000? Possible to sell for $6.50, but unlikely many people would be willing to take the risk on a debut.

    If it wasn't a typo and the story is 800 words, as everyone else said above, no, it does not have a snowball's chance.
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